July 8, 2024

Strong Presence of the Institute of Air Transport at ATRS 2024

The DLR Institute of Air Transport was represented with a total of eleven contributions at ATRS 2024
The Institute of Air Transport at the German Aerospace Center (DLR) participated in the 27th ATRS (Air Transport Research Society) World Conference in Lisbon with numerous expert presentations. The researchers presented the results of current studies, thereby significantly contributing to the exchange on the latest challenges and innovations in air transport. The presentations covered a broad range of topics, from legal and economic aspects to environmental sustainability and airport capacity, underscoring the central role of DLR in international air transport research. From left: Maurice Timmer, Dr. Sven Maertens, Dr. Thorsten Ehlers, Dr. Janina Scheelhaase, Katrin Kölker, Wolfgang Grimme, Dr. Florian Linke, Jan Pertz, Klaus Lütjens
  • Analyses of legal and economic aspects
  • Investigation of measures for more climate compatibility, airport runway capacity, geopolitical changes, and aviation logistics

ATRS 2024 in Lisbon

The 27th ATRS World Conference took place in Lisbon, Portugal, from 1st to 4th July 2024. This conference is considered one of the leading international forums for air transport research, providing a platform for exchanging insights on current developments and challenges in the aviation sector.

Insight into the Research Results

The DLR Institute of Air Transport was represented with eleven presentations. In detail, the researchers presented their latest findings on these topics:

Legal and Economic Aspects

One study focused on the application of European passenger rights in intermodal travel chains1. This research explores how passenger rights are applied in complex travel chains and the extent to which passenger rights, especially financial compensation for flight cancellations, overbookings, and long delays, are applicable to multimodal trips where ground transportation is an integral part of the flight booking. Further analyses examined the economic effects of subsidies and equity injections for airlines during the COVID-19 pandemic2, considering the financial impacts of government support measures on the competitiveness of airlines. Other topics included the dynamics of competition between European airports due to market entries and exits3, as well as the temporal development of European air transport regarding connectivity, competition, and robustness4.

Climate Compatibility of Air Transport

Another topic was the development of a roadmap for the introduction of hydrogen technology at medium-sized airports in Europe5. This roadmap outlines the necessary steps to establish hydrogen as a sustainable fuel in aviation. Additionally, the cost impact of the EU's "Fit-For-55" climate protection measures on specific flight routes and the resulting air travel demand was analysed6. These measures aim to reduce CO2 emissions and mitigate the environmental impact of air transport. Further research examined the economic impacts of sustainability measures at airports7. Another study focused on the global identification of markets, routes, and emission reduction potential of electric aircraft, based on data analysis from commercial flights in 20238. The institute also led the session "Sustainability in Air Transport."

Airport Runway Capacity, Geopolitical Changes, and Aviation Logistics

One presentation investigated how additional runways affect the capacity and efficiency of airports9. The research also addressed current geopolitical changes in European air transport and their market impacts10. Moreover, economic opportunities for aviation logistics in offshore wind farms were explored11.

1 “Multimodal travelling passengers without rights? Application of European air passenger rights in intermodal travel chains” (Maertens, 2024)

2 “Industrial Policy and Competition: Equity Injections in the European Airline Industry” (2024, a joint work between the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), KU Leuven, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, and DLR; lead author is Christina Stadler from DIW / KU Leuven)

3 “The Effect of Entry and Exit on Airport Competition in Europe” (Ulku, Niemeier, Kumar, Grimme, Hirte, Guiomard, 2024)

4 “In the Flow of Connectivity: A Dynamic Network Exploration of Europe's Air Transportation System” (Kölker, Stöbke, Lütjens, 2024)

5 “Roadmap for the introduction of hydrogen at medium-sized airports in Europe” (Scheelhaase, Oesingmann, Classen, 2024)

6 “The Route Specific Cost Impact of the European Union Fit-For-55-Measures and their Effect on Air Travel Demand” (Ehlers, Kölker, Lütjens 2024)

7 “Sustainable Airport Development: A financial modelling approach for informed decision making and technology assessment” (Timmer, 2024)

8 “Global identification of markets, routes and emission reduction potential of electric aircraft based on data analysis from commercial flights in 2023“ (Flüthmann, 2024)

9 “Does additional airport runway infrastructure always increase an airport's declared runway capacity?” (Guiomard, Niemeier, Forsyth, Grimme, 2024)

10 “Post-invasion Air Traffic from and to Russia: Who profits from the retreat of Western Airlines?” (Grimme, 2024)

11 “Unveiling Economic Opportunities for Air Transport Logistic Scenarios in Offshore Windfarms” (Pertz, 2024)


Dr. Florian Linke

Acting Institute Director
DLR - Institute of Air Transport
Blohmstraße 20, 21079 Hamburg

Franziska Bietke

Communication Manager
DLR - Institute of Air Transport
Blohmstraße 20, 21079 Hamburg
Tel: +49 40 2489641-209