Dynamic Cost Indexing


This project designed a decision-support prototype tool for managing flight delay costs in the pre-departure and airborne phases of a flight. The tool trades accelerated fuel burn and emissions charges against 'cost of time'. Costs for all major 'cost of time' components, by three cost scenarios, twelve aircraft types and by magnitude of delay are derived.

Short-term opportunities for saving fuel and/or reducing environmental impacts are identified. A shift in ATM from managing delay minutes to delay cost is also supported.

Summary papers from 2007 and 2008 may be found below, along with a selection of supporting TDDs (technical discussion documents).

Start date and duration

This project started in January, 2007, and finished in December, 2008.


Our partners/contractors were:
  • the Transport Studies Group at Westminster University (UK), the main contractor;
  • the Centre for Transport Studies at Imperial College (UK), a sub-contractor; and
  • Lufthansa Systems Aeronautics (Germany).

Project deliverables


  Acrobat Dynamic cost indexing
  Acrobat Progress report (D1)


  Acrobat Including climate impacts of NOx in a dynamic cost index tool (TDD 4.2)
  Acrobat Aircraft crewing – marginal delay costs (TDD 5.0)
  Acrobat Airline costs of delayed passengers and how to estimate full network delay costs (TDD 6.0)
  Acrobat Outline instructions for calculating emissions and associated costs and inputs (TDD 7.0)
  Acrobat Airline maintenance - marginal delay costs (TDD 9.0)

For more information

If you would like more information, please contact:
Alan Drew
  Last validation: 27/01/2009