A model with a solution algorithm for the operational aircraft maintenance routing problem

Abdelrahman E.E. Eltoukhy, Tung Sun Chan, S. H. Chung, Ben Niu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The operational aircraft maintenance routing problem (OAMRP) determines the route for each individual aircraft while incorporating operational maintenance considerations. This problem is significant for airlines as it determines the routes to be flown in real life. Most studies incorporate particular operational maintenance requirements, like restrictions on the total number of days between two successive maintenance checks, while neglecting other considerations. Such neglected considerations include restrictions on the total cumulative flying time, restrictions on the total number of takeoffs, the workforce capacity and the working hours of the maintenance stations. This can result in the generation of routes that are not feasible for implementation in reality. In this paper, we study OAMRP, with two objectives. First, to propose a model that considers all operational maintenance requirements, and for this purpose, we formulate a mixed integer linear programming (MILP) model by modifying the connection network. The proposed model is solved using commercial software for small size problems. Second, to develop a solution algorithm that solves the model efficiently and quickly while tackling medium and large-scale problems. The performance of the proposed solution algorithm is assessed based on real data obtained from EgyptAir. The results demonstrate high quality solutions and significant savings in computational time. The experiments were extended for two reasons. First, to compare the performance of the proposed solution algorithm with existing solution methods. Second, to test the effect of incorporating the operational requirements on profit. The results show that the proposed algorithm outperforms existing methods, like compressed annealing (CA), in producing better solution quality in much shorter computational time. In addition, the results reveal that considering the maintenance workforce capacity improves the profitability of the airline. Such outcomes provide evidence that the proposed model and solution method have great potential for solving the actual OAMRP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)346-359
Number of pages14
JournalComputers and Industrial Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018


  • Air transportation
  • Aircraft routing problem
  • Airline operations
  • Integer programming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • General Engineering


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