When AECOM Airport Planner Specialist Louis Roy assessed the de-icing project at Edmonton International Airport, he knew what he was up against.
Space constraints. Budget issues. Passenger satisfaction. And looming over all of this was the most critical factor of all: Time.
So when Roy chose Simio simulation software for his modeling needs, he also turned to Simaco Inc. Director of Simulation and Business Modeling Steve Pare to help get the job done. And Roy is not alone.
More and more, Simio users such as AECOM are turning to Simio partners like Pare and their respective decades of modeling experience and industry expertise to help carry projects to the finish line in style.
With respect to AECOM''''''''s project, Roy relied on Pare to handle the modeling. Pare''''''''s 20 years of experience in dealing with airport operations and expert-level familiarity with Simio allowed him to make short work of the modeling.
"Where it would take me four to six days to create a model, Steve could probably build in it two," Roy said. "Moreover, I can start analyzing results while Steve is developing and upgrading the model in parallel."
Roy said Pare''''''''s work on AECOM''''''''s recent airport de-icing project is a good example of how such a partnership can help bring a job to a close quickly.
AECOM used Simio to model de-icing operations at Edmonton International Airport -- a 7,000-acre facility that serves 6 million passengers a year and offers non-stop service to more than 50 national and international destinations.
To structure and validate its planning processes, AECOM built a de-icing facilities simulator using Simio. Click here to read the case study. AECOM was able to rapidly develop the de-icing system and use the model as a reliable and highly communicative decision support tool. Simio allowed AECOM''''''''s seasoned planners to predict aircraft wait times while experimenting with different flight schedules, weather conditions, aircraft mix, de-icing bay configurations, and coordination methods.
Roy said Pare''''''''s unique mix of modeling savvy and airport experience make him a vital part of the project.
"Offering technical support is one thing, but having a knowledgeable support technician -- or consultant -- in your field of expertise is really what we were looking for," Roy said. "The basis of our thinking was to have the flexibility to relate to an experienced consultant which eventually could be phased out as our in-house modeling capabilities grow."
Roy and Pare have also worked together to model other situations, including simulating long lines in passenger terminals.
Roy has extensive experience using airport-specific simulation software but said that Simio''''''''s ability to illustrate a simulation in a real world environment puts it ahead of other modeling tools.
"The 3D capability of Simio provides better visual graphic abilities than [other tools]," Roy said.
Specifically, Roy was able to enhance his model with Simio''''''''s connection to Google''''''''s 3D Warehouse, a library of thousands of free graphical objects. With Google''''''''s 3D Warehouse, Roy and Pare were able to paint a more accurate picture of the actual system. They used an actual scale model of the real airplane instead of a generic plane. Pare and Roy had the ability to find the Google Earth representation of the real airport and add it as a backdrop for the simulation, adding a new level of realism to the model that normally would have been lost in a blank background.