Dr.ir. B.F. (Bruno) Lopes Dos Santos

Dr.ir. B.F. (Bruno) Lopes Dos Santos


Main research topics

My research focuses on: 

  • Scheduling airline operations, including flights and crew;
  • Air cargo operations;
  • Disruption management, including for flights, crew and maintenance operations;
  • Airline network and fleet planning;
  • Aircraft maintenance planning and aircraft availability, with particular interest on the topic of Condition-based maintenance. 

To solve these problems, I have work with different methodologies, including:

  • Mixed integer linear programming;
  • Dynamic-programming;
  • Meta-heuristics (single-solution and population-based);
  • Stochastic-modelling;
  • Machine learning techniques, including supervised learning algorithms and reinforcement learning.

Current projects

Title: ReMAP - Real-time Condition-based Maintenance for Adaptive Aircraft Maintenance Planning
Website: https://h2020-remap.eu/
ReMAP will contribute to reinforce the European leadership in aeronautics by developing an open-source solution for aircraft maintenance, the Integrated Fleet Health Management (IFHM) system. By replacing fixed-interval inspections with adaptive condition-based interventions, ReMAP will have an estimated benefit to the European aviation of more than 700 million Euros per year. This is due to a direct decrease in maintenance costs, reduced unscheduled aircraft maintenance events, and increased aircraft availability.

Title: ClimOp – Climate Assessment of Innovative Mitigation Strategies Towards Operational Improvements in Aviatio
Website: (not existent)
ClimOP will investigate, for the first time, in a sound research framework, which operational improvements actually do have a positive impact on climate, taking non-CO2 effects into account. Subsequently, it will analyse and propose harmonized mitigation strategies that foster the implementation of these operational improvements. To this end, the ClimOp consortium builds on its knowledge and expertise covering the whole spectrum from aviation operations research as well as atmospheric science and consulting to airline and airport operations.


Originally from Portugal, I studied Civil Engineering at the University of Coimbra and got my PhD in Transportation Systems Planning, at the same university, in 2009. During my PhD, I had the opportunity to study at the University of Toronto, where I performed part of my research. I joined the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering at the TU Delft in 2013, after six year of teaching experience and being involved as a faculty in the Doctoral Program Transportation Systems of the MIT-Portugal Program. 
I am currently an Assistant Professor on the topic of Airline Operations and the interim head of the group Air Transport and Operations, at the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering. My research is typically sponsored by European projects and company bilateral initiatives. I am the Scientific Coordinator of ReMAP, a 6.8 Million Euro H2020 project on the topic of Condition-based Maintenance in aviation.

For all publications

Link to pure:
Link to google scholar: https://scholar.google.nl/citations?user=RROJBYsAAAAJ&hl=en
Link to researchgate: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Bruno_Santos29

Completed projects

Title: AIRMES – Airline Maintenance Operations implementation of an E2E Maintenance
Service Architecture and its enablers
Website: http://www.airmes-project.eu/
The AIRMES project focused on optimising end-to-end maintenance activities within an operator’s environment. It developed and validated an innovative, state-of-the-art, integrated maintenance service architecture that can be a key step in achieving the goal of no technically-induced aircraft operational disruptions in European air traffic. These activities were performed within the scope of the Large Passenger Aircraft (LPA) Integrated Aircraft Demonstrator Platform (IADP) of the Clean Sky 2 (CS2) Joint Undertaking (JU).

Title: AIRPLANE – Aircraft Routing Planning Embraer 
Website: Non existent
The goal of this project was to develop an aircraft recovery optimization modeling framework to deal with aircraft routing infeasibility in the case of daily operational disruptions.

Publication highlights

Title: A practical dynamic programming based methodology for aircraft maintenance check scheduling optimization
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejor.2019.08.025
This research presents a long-term aircraft maintenance check scheduling optimization approach. The optimization considers multiple inspection interval and detailed operations. A solution (for about 40 aircraft) can be obtained in 15 minutes and the number of A- and C-checks can be reduced by around 7%, when compared with the current practice.

Title: Dynamic Aircraft Recovery Problem - An Operational Decision Support Framework
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cor.2020.104892
This research introduces an operational tool that dynamic computes a recovery aircraft routing solution when disruption occur during operations. A recovery solution is found whenever a disruption occurs and subsequent disruptions are solved based on the previously found solution. Aircraft maintenance schedules and passenger itineraries are modeled, while crew concerns are indirectly taken into consideration to avoid major disruptions caused by the recovery solution.

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