Dennis F X Mathaisel


Massachusetts Institute of Technology, PhD in Flight Transportation & Operations Research
University of California at Irvine, M.S. in Operations Research & Computer Science
Northeastern University, B.S. in Aeronautical & Mechanical Engineering

Dr. Mathaisel, a principal at FTA, is a Professor of Operations Research at Babson College, where he specializes in operations research applications in aviation.  He is also affiliated with MIT's Flight Transportation Laboratory. Dr. Mathaisel's teaching responsibilities at Babson College include both graduate and undergraduate courses in mathematics, operations research and software design. His academic research activities at Babson and MIT involve the application of operations research and artificial intelligence techniques to aircraft scheduling, airline fleet planning, classroom and course scheduling, and mail distribution and delivery.

At FTL, Dr. Mathaisel developed a mathematical optimization model for air transport fleet planning using the cell concept, a technique for aggregating and reducing route networks into similar groups. He was also responsible for redesigning and extending the FTL/FTA Fleet Assignment model, and was Principal Investigator on the MIT/FTL Lean Aircraft initiative. He developed new techniques and refined existing methods for forecasting passenger airline and airport travel demand.  Dr. Mathaisel was instrumental in developing a quality-of-service index for use as an explanatory variable in analytical models.  His research findings have been applied broadly, from NASA's gauging the impact of new aviation technology, to a Massachusetts Aeronautics Commission forecast of major categories of airport activity.

Dr. Mathaisel is the lead consultant for FTA projects involving the use of the Cell Theory Model for airline fleet planning. In one, a restrictive proposed noise rule at a major airport was examined to determine the potential operational and financial impacts on a major air carrier. He also assisted a pilots' association in arbitration proceedings for integrating the seniority lists after the merger of two carriers; the Cell Model was employed to estimate the future fleet (and hence crew) requirements for the two carriers absent the merger and for the merged carrier.


Dr. Mathaisel worked with a major international airline on the development of an aircraft scheduling facility using FTA's Interactive Scheduling System (ISS). ISS was combined with the heuristic algorithm of the MIT/FTA SCHEDGEN model and other features to create an expert system for airline scheduling.

As a principal of Scheduling Systems Incorporated, he co-led the development and implementation of an aircraft schedule planning environment for US Air. He also directed the development and implementation of an aircraft schedule execution environment for flight following and handling irregular aircraft operations at Northwest Airlines. 

Dr. Mathaisel also has extensive experience in aerodynamic performance and systems analysis. At the former Douglas Aircraft Company, he managed the design and development of computer models of production, performance, operation, maintenance, and economics of new commercial jet aircraft. He developed simulation techniques to study the procedural and economic effects of the operation of various commercial jet aircraft, either proposed or already in service, and he.  supervised the development and use of computer programs for financial analysis, market forecasting, aircraft performance evaluation, and airline operations analysis.


Dr. Mathaisel holds several memberships in scientific and professional societies, including the Operations Research Society of America; the Institute of Management Science; Air Transportation Research International Forum; American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics; and the Transportation Research Board. He has published numerous technical papers and articles in the above areas. Dr. Mathaisel is a private pilot and aircraft owner.




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