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Service network design for emerging modes in air transport: autonomous airport inter-terminal bus shuttle and air metro(2022) Zhao, RunqingThesisEmerging modes of air transport such as autonomous airport shuttle and air taxi are potentially efficient alternatives to current transport practices such as bus and train. This thesis examines bus shuttle service within an airport and air metro as two examples of network design. Within an airport, the bus shuttle serves passengers between the terminals, train stations, parking lots, hotels, and shopping areas. Air metro is a type of pre-planned service in urban air mobility that accommodates passengers for intra- or inter-city trips. The problems are to optimise the service, and the outputs including the optimal fleet size, dispatch pattern and schedule. Based on the proposed time-space networks, the service network design problems are formulated as mixed integer linear programs. The heterogeneous multi-type bus fleet case and stochastic demand case are extended for the airport shuttle case, while a rolling horizon optimisation is adopted for the air metro case. In the autonomous airport inter-terminal bus shuttle case, a Monte Carlo simulation-based approach is proposed to solve the case with demand stochasticity, which is then further embedded into an "effective" passenger demand framework. The "effective" demand is the summation of mean demand value and a safety margin. By comparing the proposed airport shuttle service to the current one, it is found that the proposed service can save approximately 27% of the total system cost. The results for stochastic problem suggest estimating the safety margin to be 0.3675 times of the standard deviation brings the best performance. For the second case, the service network design is extended with a pilot scheduling layer and simulation is undertaken to compare the autonomous (pilot-less) and piloted service design. The results suggest that an autonomous air metro service would be preferable if the price of an autonomous aircraft is less than 1.6 times the price of a human-driven one. The results for rolling horizon optimisation suggest to confirm the actual demand at least 45 minutes prior to departure. Based on data from the Sydney (Australia) region, the thesis provides information directly relevant for the service network design of emerging modes of air transport in the city.
(2023) Ma, MingyouThesisWith the rapid growth of e-commerce, the surging freight traffic is imposing unprecedented pressure on urban transport systems. To mitigate negative impacts of urban freight traffic, the integrated public transport system, i.e., urban co-modality, has been proposed to utilize the existing urban passenger transport system to also carry freight during off-peak hours. Despite the benefits, the co-modal system might reduce public transport reliability and demand due to freight loading/unloading and transshipment operations. This thesis focuses on understanding and modelling the emerging integrated co-modal system for passengers and freight, and investigating and managing its system-wide impacts. This thesis first uses the smart transit card data to understand the travel behaviour of public transport users, and quantify the impact of public transport reliability on users’ day-to-day travel choices. We find that public transport users tend to reserve safety margin for the unforeseen service unreliability. Besides, we also find that there was under-utilized capacity in transit services operating during off-peak hours, which indicates the potential for transporting freight in the public transport system. With the understanding of service-reliability-based travel choices, this thesis then models the mixed freight-passenger cross-type flow and strategic interactions among operators and users in a standalone co-modal system. We first construct a fundamental game-theoretical model based on the essential characteristics of the co-modal system, such as negative impacts of freight on passenger demand. In the fundamental model, we examine the strategic interaction between a transit operator and a freight operator. We show that introducing the co-modality has the potential to generate Pareto-improving outcomes for the operators. This model is extended by considering the endogenous interactions among freight customers, passengers, freight and transit operators. We find that the co-modal system may enhance levels of services for both passengers and freight customers. Building upon these, this thesis further explores the impact of the co-modal system on the freight transport market with outsourcing arrangements. The non-cooperative and cooperative games among a freight carrier, a freight integrator, and a transit operator are modelled, and the co-modal system performance is quantified.