top of page


D. Bertsimas, P. Parrilo

Optimization Methods

Introduces the principal algorithms for linear, network, discrete, robust, nonlinear, and dynamic optimization. Emphasizes methodology and the underlying mathematical structures. Topics include the simplex method, network flow methods, branch and bound and cutting plane methods for discrete optimization, optimality conditions for nonlinear optimization, interior point methods for convex optimization, Newton's method, heuristic methods, and dynamic programming and optimal control methods. Expectations and evaluation criteria differ for students taking graduate version; consult syllabus or instructor for specific details.

Transportation Optimization, Operations Research


D. J. Bertsimas, A. S. Schulz

Integer Programming and Combinatorial Optimization

In-depth treatment of the modern theory of integer programming and combinatorial optimization, emphasizing geometry, duality, and algorithms. Topics include formulating problems in integer variables, enhancement of formulations, ideal formulations, integer programming duality, linear and semidefinite relaxations, lattices and their applications, the geometry of integer programming, primal methods, cutting plane methods, connections with algebraic geometry, computational complexity, approximation algorithms, heuristic and enumerative algorithms, mixed integer programming and solutions of large-scale problems.

Transportation Optimization, Operations Research


Jinhua Zhao

Transportation Research Design

Seminar dissects ten transportation studies from head to toe to illustrate how research ideas are initiated, framed, analyzed, evidenced, written, presented, criticized, revised, extended, and published, quoted and applied. Students design and execute their own transportation research.

Transit, Emerging Mobility


Jinhua Zhao, John Moavenzadeh, Bill Aulet, Bhuvan Atluri

Mobility Ventures: Driving Innovation in Transportation Systems

This course is designed for students who aspire to shape the future of mobility. The course explores technological, behavioral, policy and systems-wide frameworks for innovation in transportation systems, complemented with case studies across the mobility spectrum, from autonomous vehicles to urban air mobility to last-mile sidewalk robots. Students will interact with a series of guest lecturers from CEOs and other business and government executives who are actively reshaping the future of mobility.

Mobility Entrepreneurship


Jinhua Zhao

Frontier of Transportation Research

Survey of the latest transportation research offered by 12 MIT faculty each presenting their ongoing research. Students are required to attend the classes, read the assigned articles, and write a brief reflection memo.

Frontier, Research


Jinhua Zhao, Andrew Salzberg

Decarbonizing Urban Mobility

This summer’s extreme weather and the just-released IPCC report have brought renewed attention to the urgent need to drive global carbon dioxide emissions to zero by 2050. Transportation is the single largest source of those emissions in the United States, and a major source globally. What combination of policy, technology, behavior change, and investment is best positioned to accelerate the decarbonization of urban mobility? A new course from MIT Mobility Initiative and DUSP Prof. Jinhua Zhao and transportation & climate change professional Andrew Salzberg will grapple with this question, drawing from the latest research and industry trends.

Sustainability, Decarbonizing


Ali Jadbabaie

Introduction to Network Models

Provides an introduction to complex networks, their structure, and function, with examples from engineering, applied mathematics and social sciences. Topics include spectral graph theory, notions of centrality, random graph models, contagion phenomena, cascades and diffusion, and opinion dynamics.

Network Science, Graph Theory


Cathy Wu

Transportation Systems Modeling

Introduces basic concepts of transportation systems modeling, data analysis and visualization techniques. Covers fundamental analytical and simulation-based methodologies. Topics include time-space diagrams, cumulative plots, queueing theory, network science, data analysis, and their applications. Provides students with an understanding of the current challenges and opportunities in different areas of transportation.

Transportation Systems Modeling, Simulation


Richard de Neufville

Engineering Systems Analysis for Design

Practical-oriented subject that builds upon theory and methods and culminates in extended application. Covers methods to identify, value, and implement flexibility in design (real options). Topics include definition of uncertainties, simulation of performance for scenarios, screening models to identify desirable flexibility, decision analysis, and multidimensional economic evaluation. Students demonstrate proficiency through an extended application to a system design of their choice. Complements research or thesis projects. Meets with IDS.333 first half of term. Enrollment limited.

Uncertainties, Simulation, Flexibility


Carolina Osorio

Transportation Systems Analysis: Performance & Optimization

Problem-motivated introduction to methods, models and tools for the analysis and design of transportation networks including their planning, operations and control. Capacity of critical elements of transportation networks. Traffic flows and deterministic and probabilistic delay models. Formulation of optimization models for planning and scheduling of freight, transit and airline systems, and their solution using software packages. User- and system-optimal traffic assignment. Control of traffic flows on highways, urban grids, and airspace.

Transportation Optimization, Operations Research



Transportation Systems Analysis: Demand and Economics

Covers the key principles governing transportation systems planning and management. Introduces the microeconomic concepts central to transportation systems. Topics include economic theories of the firm, consumer, and market, demand models, discrete choice analysis, cost models and production functions, and pricing theory. Applications to transportation systems - including congestion pricing, technological change, resource allocation, market structure and regulation, revenue forecasting, public and private transportation finance, and project evaluation - cover urban passenger transportation, freight, maritime, aviation, and intelligent transportation systems.

Transportation Planning and Management, Demand Models, Transportation Economics


Moshe Ben-Akiva

Demand Modeling

Theory and application of modeling and statistical methods for analysis and forecasting of demand for facilities, services, and products. Topics include: review of probability and statistics, estimation and testing of linear regression models, theory of individual choice behavior, derivation, estimation, and testing of discrete choice models (including logit, nested logit, GEV, probit, and mixture models), estimation under various sample designs and data collection methods (including revealed and stated preferences), sampling, aggregate forecasting methods, and iterative proportional fitting and related methods. Lectures reinforced with case studies, which require specification, estimation, testing, and analysis of models using data sets from actual applications.

Demand Modeling, Probability and Statistics


Arnold I. Barnett

Applied Probability and Stochastic Models

A vigorous use of probabilistic models to approximate real-life situations in Finance, Operations Management, Economics, and Operations Research. Emphasis on how to develop a suitable probabilistic model in a given setting and, merging probability with statistics, and on how to validate a proposed model against empirical evidence. Extensive treatment of Monte Carlo simulation for modeling random processes when analytic solutions are unattainable.

Probabilistic modeling, Monte Carlo Simulation


Saurabh Amin

Resilient Infrastructure Networks

Control algorithms and game-theoretic tools to enable resilient operation of large-scale infrastructure networks. Dynamical network flow models, stability analysis, robust predictive control, fault and attack diagnostic tools. Strategic network design, routing games, congestion pricing, demand response, and incentive regulation. Design of operations management strategies for different reliability and security scenarios. Applications to transportation, logistics, electric-power, and water distribution networks.

Resilient Infrastructure Network, Control Algorithms, Game-Theory, Operations Management


Amedeo Odoni

Planning and Design of Airport Systems

Focuses on current practice, developing trends, and advanced concepts in airport design and planning. Considers economic, environmental, and other trade-offs related to airport location, as well as the impacts of emphasizing "green" measures. Includes an analysis of the effect of airline operations on airports. Topics include demand prediction, determination of airfield capacity, and estimation of levels of congestion; terminal design; the role of airports in the aviation and transportation system; access problems; optimal configuration of air transport networks and implications for airport development; and economics, financing, and institutional aspects. Special attention to international practice and developments.

Airport Design and Planning, Airline Operations


Hamsa Balakrishnan

Air Transportation Operations Research

Presents a unified view of advanced quantitative analysis and optimization techniques applied to the air transportation sector. Considers the problem of operating and managing the aviation sector from the perspectives of the system operators (e.g., the FAA), the airlines, and the resultant impacts on the end-users (the passengers). Explores models and optimization approaches to system-level problems, airline schedule planning problems, and airline management challenges.

Air Transportation, Optimization


Hamsa Balakrishnan

Air Transportation Operations Research

Presents a unified view of advanced quantitative analysis and optimization techniques applied to the air transportation sector. Considers the problem of operating and managing the aviation sector from the perspectives of the system operators (e.g., the FAA), the airlines, and the resultant impacts on the end-users (the passengers). Explores models and optimization approaches to system-level problems, airline schedule planning problems, and airline management challenges. Term paper required.

Air Transportation, Operations Research


Chris Zegras

Comparative Land Use and Transportation Planning

Focuses on the integration of land use and transportation planning, drawing from cases in both industrialized and developing countries. Reviews underlying theories, analytical techniques, and the empirical evidence of the land use-transportation relationship at the metropolitan, intra-metropolitan, and micro-scales. Also covers the various ways of measuring urban structure, form, and the "built environment." Develops students' skills to assess relevant policies, interventions and impacts.

Land Use and Transportation, Built Environment


Fred Salvucci

Transportation Policy, the Environment, and Livable Communities

Examines the economic and political conflict between transportation and the environment. Investigates the role of government regulation, green business and transportation policy as a facilitator of economic development and environmental sustainability. Analyzes a variety of international policy problems, including government-business relations, the role of interest groups, non-governmental organizations, and the public and media in the regulation of the automobile; sustainable development; global warming; politics of risk and siting of transport facilities; environmental justice; equity; as well as transportation and public health in the urban metropolis. Provides students with an opportunity to apply transportation and planning methods to develop policy alternatives in the context of environmental politics. Students taking graduate version complete additional assignments.

Transportation Policy, Environmental Justice, Equity


Matthias Winkenbach

Urban Last-Mile Logistics

Explores specific challenges of urban last-mile B2C and B2B distribution in both industrialized and emerging economies. Develops an in-depth understanding of the perspectives, roles, and decisions of all relevant stakeholder groups, from consumers, to private sector decision makers, to public policy makers. Discussion of the most relevant traditional and the most promising innovating operating models for urban last-mile distribution. Introduces applications of the essential quantitative methods for the strategic design and tactical planning of urban last-mile distribution systems, including optimization and simulation. Covers basic facility location problems, network design problems, single- and multi-echelon vehicle routing problems, as well as associated approximation techniques.

Last-Mile, B2C, B2B, Optimization and Simulation



Autonomous Vehicles

Theory and application of probabilistic techniques for autonomous mobile robotics. Topics include probabilistic state estimation and decision making for mobile robots; stochastic representations of the environment; dynamic models and sensor models for mobile robots; algorithms for mapping and localization; planning and control in the presence of uncertainty; cooperative operation of multiple mobile robots; mobile sensor networks; application to autonomous marine (underwater and floating), ground, and air vehicles.

Autonomous Vehicle, Robabilistic Techniques, Mobile Robots


Stephen Graves

D-Lab: Supply Chains

Introduces concepts of supply chain design and planning with a focus on supply chains for products destined to improve quality of life in developing countries. Topics include demand estimation, process analysis and improvement, facility location and capacity planning, inventory management, and supply chain coordination. Also covers issues specific to emerging markets, such as sustainable supply chains, choice of distribution channels, and how to account for the value-adding role of a supply chain. Students conduct D-Lab-based projects on supply chain design or improvement. Students taking graduate version will complete additional assignments.

Supply Chain Design, Demand Estimation, Process Analysis and Improvement, Facility Location and Capacity Planning


Kent Larson

City Science

Focuses on architectural and mobility interventions that respond to changing patterns of living, working, and transport. Emphasizes mass-customized housing, autonomous parking, charging infrastructure, and shared-use networks of lightweight electric vehicles (LEVs). Students work in small teams and are lead by researchers from the Changing Places group. Projects focus on the application of these ideas to case study cities and may include travel. Invited guests from academia and industry participate. Repeatable for credit with permission of instructor.

Mobility Interventions, Autonomous Parking, Charging Infrastructure


Sertac Karaman

Robotics: Science and Systems

Presents concepts, principles, and algorithmic foundations for robots and autonomous vehicles operating in the physical world. Topics include sensing, kinematics and dynamics, state estimation, computer vision, perception, learning, control, motion planning, and embedded system development. Students design and implement advanced algorithms on complex robotic platforms capable of agile autonomous navigation and real-time interaction with the physical word. Students engage in extensive written and oral communication exercises.

Autonomous Vehicles, Autonomous Navigation, Robotic Platforms


Cathy Wu

Reinforcement Learning: Foundations and Methods

This subject counts as a Control concentration subject. Reinforcement learning (RL) as a methodology for approximately solving sequential decision-making under uncertainty, with foundations in optimal control and machine learning. Finite horizon and infinite horizon dynamic programming, focusing on discounted Markov decision processes. Value and policy iteration. Monte Carlo, temporal differences, Q-learning, and stochastic approximation. Approximate dynamic programming, including value-based methods and policy space methods. Special topics at the boundary of theory and practice in RL. Applications and examples drawn from diverse domains. While an analysis prerequisite is not required, mathematical maturity is necessary. Enrollment limited

Reinforcement Learning


Bart P.G. Van Parys

Introduction to Mathematical Programming

Introduction to linear optimization and its extensions emphasizing both methodology and the underlying mathematical structures and geometrical ideas. Covers classical theory of linear programming as well as some recent advances in the field. Topics: simplex method; duality theory; sensitivity analysis; network flow problems; decomposition; integer programming; interior point algorithms for linear programming; and introduction to combinatorial optimization and NP-completeness.

Linear Optimization


Bart P.G. Van Parys

Nonlinear Optimization

Unified analytical and computational approach to nonlinear optimization problems. Unconstrained optimization methods include gradient, conjugate direction, Newton, sub-gradient and first-order methods. Constrained optimization methods include feasible directions, projection, interior point methods, and Lagrange multiplier methods. Convex analysis, Lagrangian relaxation, nondifferentiable optimization, and applications in integer programming. Comprehensive treatment of optimality conditions and Lagrange multipliers. Geometric approach to duality theory. Applications drawn from control, communications, machine learning, and resource allocation problems.

Nonlinear Optimization


Guy Bresler

Discrete Probability and Stochastic Processes

Provides an introduction to tools used for probabilistic reasoning in the context of discrete systems and processes. Tools such as the probabilistic method, first and second moment method, martingales, concentration and correlation inequalities, theory of random graphs, weak convergence, random walks and Brownian motion, branching processes, Markov chains, Markov random fields, correlation decay method, isoperimetry, coupling, influences and other basic tools of modern research in probability will be presented. Algorithmic aspects and connections to statistics and machine learning will be emphasized.

Probabilistic Reasoning, Markov Chains, Random Walks


Patrick Jaillet

Network Science and Models

Introduces the main mathematical models used to describe large networks and dynamical processes that evolve on networks. Static models of random graphs, preferential attachment, and other graph evolution models. Epidemic propagation, opinion dynamics, social learning, and inference in networks. Applications drawn from social, economic, natural, and infrastructure networks, as well as networked decision systems such as sensor networks.

Network Science, Graph Evolution Models


Hari Balakrishnan

Computer Networks

Topics on the engineering and analysis of network protocols and architecture, including architectural principles for designing heterogeneous networks; transport protocols; Internet routing; router design; congestion control and network resource management; wireless networks; network security; naming; overlay and peer-to-peer networks. Readings from original research papers.

Network Architecture, Congestion Control


Patrick Jaillet

Applied Machine Learning

Introduces principles, algorithms, and applications of machine learning from the point of view of modeling and prediction; formulation of learning problems; representation, over-fitting, generalization; classification, regression, reinforcement learning; and methods such as linear classifiers, feed-forward, convolutional, and recurrent networks. Students taking graduate version complete different assignments. Meets with 6.036 when offered concurrently. Recommended prerequisites: 18.06 and 6.006. Enrollment limited; no listeners.

Machine Learning


T. Jaakkola

Machine Learning

Principles, techniques, and algorithms in machine learning from the point of view of statistical inference; representation, generalization, and model selection; and methods such as linear/additive models, active learning, boosting, support vector machines, non-parametric Bayesian methods, hidden Markov models, Bayesian networks, and convolutional and recurrent neural networks. Recommended prerequisite: 6.036 or other previous experience in machine learning.

Machine Learning


Jinhua Zhao

Behavioral Science and Urban Mobility

Examines the behavioral foundation for policy design using urban transportation examples. Introduces multiple frameworks for understanding behavior while contrasting the perspectives of classic economic theory with behavioral economics and social psychology. Suggests corresponding policy interventions and establishes a mapping across behavior, theory, and policy. Presents a spectrum of instruments for positively influencing behavior and improving welfare. Challenges students to critique, design, implement and interpret experiments that nudge travel behavior. Brings behavioral insights to creative design of transport policies that are efficient and equitable as well as simple, consistent, transparent, acceptable, and adaptive to behavioral changes. Students taking graduate version complete additional assignments.

Behavioral Science, Urban Mobility, Behavior-Theory-Policy Mapping


Valerie Karplus

Global Energy: Politics, Markets, and Policy

Focuses on the ways economics and politics influence the fate of energy technologies, business models, and policies around the world. Extends fundamental concepts in the social sciences to case studies and simulations that illustrate how corporate, government, and individual decisions shape energy and environmental outcomes. In a final project, students apply the concepts in order to assess the prospects for an energy innovation to scale and advance sustainability goals in a particular regional market. Recommended prerequisite: 14.01. Meets with 15.219 when offered concurrently. Expectations and evaluation criteria differ for students taking graduate version; consult syllabus or instructor for specific details. Preference to juniors, seniors, and Energy Minors.

Energy Technologies, Economics, Politics


Jinhua Zhao

Transportation Research Design

Seminar dissects ten transportation studies from head to toe to illustrate how research ideas are initiated, framed, analyzed, evidenced, written, presented, criticized, revised, extended, and published, quoted and applied. Students design and execute their own transportation research.

Transportation Research Design


Eric Huntley

Spatial Database Management and Advanced Geographic Information Systems

Extends the computing and geographic information systems (GIS) skills developed in 11.520 to include spatial data management in client/server environments and advanced GIS techniques. First half covers the content of 11.523, introducing database management concepts, SQL (Structured Query Language), and enterprise-class database management software. Second half explores advanced features and the customization features of GIS software that perform analyses for decision support that go beyond basic thematic mapping. Includes the half-term GIS project of 11.524 that studies a real-world planning issue.

GIS, SQL, Database Management



Advanced Seminar in Transportation Finance

Focuses on the theory and practice of transportation system finance, examining the range of relevant topics including basic public finance, politics, institutional structures, externalities, pricing, and the role of advanced technologies. Primarily oriented around land-based, surface transportation, although in their research students are welcome to examine air and maritime modes according to their interests. Explores issues across a range of contexts, including North America, Europe, Latin America, and Asia.

Transportation System Finance



Transportation and Urban Development Workshop

Combines class- and field-based learning and applications and includes four basic parts: knowledge of the context (field study); global knowledge of urban development-transportation integration (e.g., in-depth case studies); application of the global knowledge to specific field site(s); generalization of application(s) to potential sites across the metropolitan area. Over the course the term, students have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of the local context; develop an understanding of how urban development and transportation can be viably integrated, generally; design proposals for specific sites; develop the business and social and development cases for the sites; and craft a plan to better integrate urban development and transportation in the metropolitan area, involving local authorities, private investors, and citizens.

Transportation and Urban Development


Jim Aloisi

Urban Transportation Planning & Policy

The course examines urban transportation policymaking and planning, its relationship to social and environmental justice and the influences of politics, governance structures and human and institutional behavior. Through the lens of history and current events the course explores the pathway that led to today’s legacy infrastructure, legacy policies (and legacy thinking), how attitudes are influenced, and how change happens. The course will examine the tensions and potential synergies among transportation policy values of individual mobility, access, system efficiency and “sustainability”. Traditional planning methods will be assessed with a critical eye, and through that process students will learn how to approach transportation planning in a way that responds to contemporary needs and values, with an emphasis on transport justice.
Planning and policymaking will be discussed in relation to recent pandemic effects, which bring
an unprecedented level of uncertainty and complexity to the policy context. Among other
topics to be explored: the roles of the federal, state, and local government; analysis of current trends and pattern breaks; transport sector decarbonization; land use, placemaking, and sustainable mobility networks; the role of “mobility as a service”, and the implications of disruptive technology on personal mobility.

Public Transport, Urban Planning, Design and Policy


Anson Stewart

Public Transportation Analytics and Planning

Students will gain experience processing, visualizing, and analyzing urban mobility data, with special emphasis on models and performance metrics tailored to scheduled, fixed-route transit services. The evolution of urban public transportation modes and services, as well as interaction with emerging on-demand services, will be covered. Instructors and guest lecturers from industry will discuss both methods for data collection and analysis, as well as organizational, policy, and governance constraints on transit planning. In assignments, students will practice using spatial database, data visualization, network analysis, and other software to shape recommendations for transit that effectively meets the future needs of cities.

Public Transportation, Data Analytics


Jinhua Zhao

Deep Learning for Urban Mobility

Explores deep learning (DL) methods for urban mobility applications. Covers concepts of algorithmic prediction, interpretability, causality, and fairness in the context of urban mobility system design and policy making. Topics include demand prediction at both individual and aggregate levels, decision making with and without uncertainty, vehicle and ride sharing, built environment and travel behavior, traffic prediction and control, maps and information provision, and multimodal system design. Students learn intuitions and methods in DNN, CNN, RNN and reinforcement learning, build hands-on models using real-world datasets, and design and implement group projects. At the intersection of machine learning methods and urban mobility applications, the course seeks to reconcile the tension between generic-purpose models and domain-specific knowledge. Furthermore, the course envisions and critically reflects on how machine learning methods shape transportation research and mobility industry, and examines the potentials and pitfalls of their applications in urban mobility business and policies.

Deep Learning, Demand Modeling


Anna Mikusheva

Econometric Data Science

Introduces regression and other tools for causal inference and descriptive analysis in empirical economics. Topics include analysis of randomized experiments, instrumental variables methods and regression discontinuity designs, differences-in-differences estimation, and regress with time series data. Develops the skills needed to conduct — and critique — empirical studies in economics and related fields. Empirical applications are drawn from published examples and frontier research. Familiarity with statistical programming languages is helpful. Students taking graduate version complete an empirical project leading to a short paper. Limited to 70 total for versions meeting together.

Econometric, Quasi-Experiment


Jing Li

Economics of Energy, Innovation, and Sustainability

Covers energy and environmental market organization and regulation. Explores economic challenges and solutions to transforming energy markets to be more efficient, accessible, affordable, and sustainable. Applies core economic concepts - consumer choice, firm profit maximization, and strategic behavior - to understand when energy and environmental markets work well and when they fail. They also conduct data-driven economic analysis on the trade-offs of real and proposed policy interventions. Topics include renewable generation sources for electricity, energy access in emerging markets, efficiency programs and fuel efficiency standards, transitioning transportation to alternative fuels, measuring damages and adaptation to climate change, and the effect of energy and environmental policy on innovation.

Energy and Environment, Alternative Fuels, Policy and Regulation


Alexandre Jacquillat

Advanced Analytics Edge

More advanced version of 15.071 introduces core methods of business analytics, their algorithmic implementations and their applications to various domains of management and public policy. Spans descriptive analytics (e.g., clustering, dimensionality reduction), predictive analytics (e.g., linear/logistic regression, classification and regression trees, random forests, boosting deep learning) and prescriptive analytics (e.g., optimization). Presents analytics algorithms, and their implementations in data science. Includes case studies in e-commerce, transportation, energy, healthcare, social media, sports, the internet, and beyond. Uses the R and Julia programming languages. Includes team projects. Preference to Sloan Master of Business Analytics students.

Quantitative Methods, Data-mining, Dynamic Optimization, Simulation


Dimitris Bertsimas

Robust Modeling, Optimization, and Computation

Introduces modern robust optimization, including theory, applications, and computation. Presents formulations and their connection to probability, information and risk theory for conic optimization (linear, second-order, and semidefinite cones) and integer optimization. Application domains include analysis and optimization of stochastic networks, optimal mechanism design, network information theory, transportation, pattern classification, structural and engineering design, and financial engineering. Students formulate and solve a problem aligned with their interests in a final project.

Robust Optimization


Luca Carlone

Visual Navigation for Autonomous Vehicles

Covers the mathematical foundations and state-of-the-art implementations of algorithms for vision-based navigation of autonomous vehicles (e.g., mobile robots, self-driving cars, drones). Topics include geometric control, 3D vision, visual-inertial navigation, place recognition, and simultaneous localization and mapping. Provides students with a rigorous but pragmatic overview of differential geometry and optimization on manifolds and knowledge of the fundamentals of 2-view and multi-view geometric vision for real-time motion estimation, calibration, localization, and mapping. The theoretical foundations are complemented with hands-on labs based on state-of-the-art mini race car and drone platforms. Culminates in a critical review of recent advances in the field and a team project aimed at advancing the state-of-the-art.

Vision-Based Navigation, Autonomous Vehicle, Simulation


Peter Belobaba

The Airline Industry

Overview of the global airline industry, focusing on recent industry performance, current issues and challenges for the future. Fundamentals of airline industry structure, airline economics, operations planning, safety, labor relations, airports and air traffic control, marketing, and competitive strategies, with an emphasis on the interrelationships among major industry stakeholders. Recent research findings of the MIT Global Airline Industry Program are showcased, including the impacts of congestion and delays, evolution of information technologies, changing human resource management practices, and competitive effects of new entrant airlines. Taught by faculty participants of the Global Airline Industry Program.

Airline Industry Structure, Airline Economics, Operations Planning


Steven Barrett

Aerospace, Energy, and the Environment

Addresses energy and environmental challenges facing aerospace in the 21st century. Topics include: aircraft performance and energy requirements, propulsion technologies, jet fuels and alternative fuels, lifecycle assessment of fuels, combustion, emissions, climate change due to aviation, aircraft contrails, air pollution impacts of aviation, impacts of supersonic aircraft, and aviation noise. Includes an in-depth introduction to the relevant atmospheric and combustion physics and chemistry with no prior knowledge assumed. Discussion and analysis of near-term technological, fuel-based, regulatory and operational mitigation options for aviation, and longer-term technical possibilities.

Aircraft Performance, Propulsion Technologies



Air Traffic Control

Introduces the various aspects of present and future Air Traffic Control systems. Descriptions of the present system: systems-analysis approach to problems of capacity and safety; surveillance, including NAS and ARTS; navigation subsystem technology; aircraft guidance and control; communications; collision avoidance systems; sequencing and spacing in terminal areas; future directions and development; critical discussion of past proposals and of probable future problem areas. Requires term paper.

Air Traffic Control,


Peter Belobaba

Airline Management

Overview of airline management decision processes, with a focus on economic issues and their relationship to operations planning models and decision support tools. Application of economic models of demand, pricing, costs, and supply to airline markets and networks. Examination of industry practice and emerging methods for fleet planning, route network design, scheduling, pricing and revenue management, with emphasis on the interactions between the components of airline management and profit objectives in competitive environments. Students participate in a competitive airline management simulation game as part of the subject requirements.

Airline Management, Economic Analysis



Introduction to Airline Transport Aircraft Systems and Automation

Intensive one-week subject that uses the Boeing 767 aircraft as an example of a system of systems. Focuses on design drivers and compromises, system interactions, and human-machine interface. Morning lectures, followed by afternoon desktop simulator sessions. Critique and comparison with other transport aircraft designs. Includes one evening at Boston Logan International Airport aboard an aircraft.

Aircraft Design, Human-Machine Interaction


John Hansman

Flight Vehicle Engineering

Design of an atmospheric flight vehicle to satisfy stated performance, stability, and control requirements. Emphasizes individual initiative, application of fundamental principles, and the compromises inherent in the engineering design process. Includes instruction and practice in written and oral communication, through team presentations and a written final report. Course 16 students are expected to complete two professional or concentration subjects from the departmental program before taking this capstone.

Flight Vehicle


Jonathan How

Advanced Autonomous Robotic Systems

Students design an autonomous vehicle system to satisfy stated performance goals. Emphasizes both hardware and software components of the design and implementation. Entails application of fundamental principles and design engineering in both individual and group efforts. Practice in written and oral communication provided. Students showcase the final design to the public at the end of the term.

Autonomous Vehicle, Hardware & Software


John Hansman

Air Transportation Systems Architecting

Addresses the architecting of air transportation systems. Focuses on the conceptual phase of product definition including technical, economic, market, environmental, regulatory, legal, manufacturing, and societal factors. Centers on a realistic system case study and includes a number of lectures from industry and government. Past examples include the Very Large Transport Aircraft, a Supersonic Business Jet and a Next Generation Cargo System. Identifies the critical system level issues and analyzes them in depth via student team projects and individual assignments. Overall goal is to produce a business plan and a system specifications document that can be used to assess candidate systems.

Air Transportation Architecture


Stefanie Jegelka

Statistics, Computation and Applications

Hands-on analysis of data demonstrates the interplay between statistics and computation. Includes four modules, each centered on a specific data set, and introduced by a domain expert. Provides instruction in specific, relevant analysis methods and corresponding algorithmic aspects. Potential modules may include medical data, gene regulation, social networks, finance data (time series), traffic, transportation, weather forecasting, policy, or industrial web applications. Projects address a large-scale data analysis question. Students taking graduate version complete additional assignments. Limited enrollment; priority to Statistics and Data Science minors and to juniors and seniors.

Statistics, Computation, Large-scale Data Analysis

bottom of page