Multi-Scale Analysis of the European Airspace Using Network Community Detection

Rosario Nunzio Mantegna, Marco Cipolla, Stefania Vitali, Salvatore Micciche', Gérald Gurtner, Simone Pozzi, Fabrizio Lillo, Rosario Nunzio Mantegna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


We show that the European airspace can be represented as a multi-scale traffic network whose nodes are airports, sectors, or navigation points and links are defined and weighted according to the traffic of flights between the nodes. By using a unique database of the air traffic in the European airspace, we investigate the architecture of these networks with a special emphasis on their community structure. We propose that unsupervised network community detection algorithms can be used to monitor the current use of the airspace and improve it by guiding the design of new ones. Specifically, we compare the performance of several community detection algorithms, both with fixed and variable resolution, and also by using anull model which takes into account the spatial distance between nodes, and we discuss their ability to find communities that could be used to define new control units of the airspace.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
JournalPLoS One
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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