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Bi-level Network Design for UAM Vertiport Allocation Using Activity-Based Transport Simulations

Sebastian Brulin and Markus Olhofer, "Bi-level Network Design for UAM Vertiport Allocation Using Activity-Based Transport Simulations", The 6th International Electric Vehicle Technology Conference, 2023.


The design of a future Urban Air Mobility (UAM) infrastructure plays an essential role when introducing a new mode of transportation. One key question is where to optimally allocate vertiport facilities to offer the best coverage, mode integration, and highest utilization for a new aerial transportation service. This paper presents a bi-level network design study in which the discrete decisions of the network design planner are optimized based on the dynamic demand of the user's mode choice according to the behavior in response to the available transport supply. In the introduced approach, we solve the activity-based network design problem (AB-NDP) using integer programming for an alternative maximal coverage model while simulating the demand with the large-scale Multi-Agent Transport Simulation (MATSim) framework. The proposed bi-level approach is compared against the results of static demand methods. Due to its generic character, the demonstrated utilization of a bi-level method is applicable to many questions within the mobility service domain. It allows incorporating complex system responses of mobility services to determine service parameters or product specifications for particular markets early in the design process.

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