PPRuNe Forums


ATC Issues A place where pilots may enter the 'lions den' that is Air Traffic Control in complete safety and find out the answers to all those obscure topics which you always wanted to know the answer to but were afraid to ask.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 25th May 2017, 17:37   #101 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
Good points Uplinker, and interesting to hear the views of an 'end-user', as modern business-terminology describes your profession.

Historically, 'monocularly' always de-barred an applicant from holding a Class 1 aviation medical.

I believe PPLs could/can operate with this condition, as their medicals are 'Class 3'?

Now, ATCOs have Class 3 medicals, so 'Monocularity may be acceptable for an ATCO Licence application?

The r-TWR system is essentially 'monocular.

And as a keen photographer myself, your bottom line is spot-on.

Last edited by ZOOKER; 25th May 2017 at 17:53.
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 18:12   #102 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Rapunzel's tower
Posts: 329
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZOOKER View Post
Historically, 'monocularly' always de-barred an applicant from holding a Class 1 aviation medical.

I believe PPLs could/can operate with this condition, as their medicals are 'Class 3'?

Now, ATCOs have Class 3 medicals, so 'Monocularity may be acceptable for an ATCO Licence application?
Funnily enough I wondered about that too. Don't know enough about the condition to know if it would be a problem for operating touchscreens etc.
good egg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 18:30   #103 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
Also, the standards of colour-vision required for the ATCO medical are possibly a relevant factor?

How accurate are the visual sensors/displays in terms of colour-fidelity?
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 18:36   #104 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Rapunzel's tower
Posts: 329
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uplinker View Post
I As for zooming and panning, it was claimed that any 4 pixel object such as a helicopeter or drone could be tracked, how do you do that without zooming and panning...?
Thanks for your added detail.

A demo video of digital/remote tower capability - albeit some time ago - indicated automatic FOD detection warnings and the ability to automatically track anomalies without operator input.

I don't know the design spec for this project but I have seen various ways in which sun glare etc can be resolved...some are automatic adjustments others are manual (very similar in fact to lowering a blind!).

If advances in mobile phone cameras performance in low light are anything to go by then I doubt there'll be an issue with the sorts of high-end cameras selected for projects of this scope.
good egg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 19:47   #105 (permalink)
aceatco, retired
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: one airshow or another
Posts: 1,342
As a long time ATCO (retired 10 years), a current FISO and A/G Operator all over the place, I used/use binoculars a lot when operating - comes of being nosey but is the gear down, what is that aeroplane over there, is that something on the runway, etc. Presumably bins will just enlarge the pixels?
vintage ATCO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 20:42   #106 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Berkshire, UK
Age: 72
Posts: 8,064
Uplinker - wise words indeed.
HEATHROW DIRECTOR is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25th May 2017, 22:19   #107 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
High-end cameras and displays will obviously incur high-end costs.

Back in the 1960/70s, I worked at a non-state airfield which has a 3 storey ATC facility.

When the airfield opened, the 'low-level' VCR wasn't a problem, but as the terminals expanded, the view out of the windows became more and more restricted.

The last time I visited the VCR, prior to the introduction of a new, taller structure, the VCR looked like a TV studio control-gallery, and the ATCOs were not happy bunnies.

In the early days, one of the cameras was aimed into the rising sun, to look at the 28 holding-point, and it did an 'Apollo 12'. The tels guys who installed the system were not happy bunnies.
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th May 2017, 06:49   #108 (permalink)
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Living In The Past
Age: 69
Posts: 264
Serves them right Z - they should have set it up like the TfL cameras that shut off when pointed at the MI6 building - I'm sure someone could write a prog to follow the sun :-)

I'll bet most ATCO's could tell a story about new kit that did something the boffins hadn't thought of. Just look how many software revisions there have been to Windows 10 already.

I can see remote stuff working at places like City, simply because there's only one runway & standard in/out tracks. However, If I look back to the days of the Flying College @ EGPK, the thought of it in use at those traffic levels worries me somewhat !

Last edited by Eric T Cartman; 26th May 2017 at 09:31.
Eric T Cartman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th May 2017, 15:08   #109 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
Just thinking about the remote/digital tower concept in the light of today's problems that are affecting "The World's Favourite Airline".

According to some observers, today's problems could be the result of cost-cutting' and the outsourcing of 'in-house' IT systems.

Given the present trend at NATS for outsourcing, globalisation, alliances and cost-cutting, could such a scenario as has befallen BAW affect r-TWR ops?

At least when 9020 went pop, as it did, we could keep the service going, a bit.

Yesterday I watched the video from the 'EGLC Virtual VCR' at Swan Wick and I was stuck by the difference in image colour/contrast across the 'windows'.

The day before, the r-TWR system was discussed at some length, with 3 other retired NATS staff, with about 130 operational years between us.......And we still couldn't get our heads around it!

We agreed collectively that one day, about 20 years in the future, some management whizz-kid might think.....'Hang on, what if we put the ATCOs in a 'purpose-designed structure', which is actually AT the airfield?
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th May 2017, 15:27   #110 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: 50+ north
Posts: 588
Shame it never happened before I hung up my headset - might have had the opportunity to match our GM, and work from home!
TCAS FAN is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th May 2017, 15:34   #111 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
Nice work if you can get it TCAS.

the last AME I used did just that. His 'surgery' was in his front room. He said it's brilliant this set up, about the best job I've ever had......And, all my patients are usually in the best of health to boot!
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th May 2017, 17:09   #112 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: South of England
Posts: 1,021
Zooker - you forgot to mention the cheque for 250 quid for a half-hour's work!


Your point about a whiz kid in 20 years' time - I was just about to say exactly the same - in each case, essentially change for the sake of change, oh, and brownie points for personal advancement.


2 s


2 s
2 sheds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th May 2017, 17:18   #113 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The foot of Mt. Belzoni.
Posts: 1,778
He's a super chap 2s.

One year, I needed an audiogram, and he had to ask the man next-door to stop mowing the lawn while did it.

You can't beat having a cat wandering about while you're reading the eye chart.
ZOOKER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29th May 2017, 07:12   #114 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: On a foreign shore trying a new wine diet. So far, I've lost 3days!
Age: 69
Posts: 395
Failure is not an option -- it comes bundled with Windows. Just ask BA.
On the beach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29th May 2017, 08:54   #115 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: London
Posts: 34
situational awareness

"The consistent feedback I've had from those controllers are the improvement in their view over the airport and the improvement in their situational awareness."

I don't believe you Good Egg. I think you made this up to try to support your theories.

The key to this issue is situational awareness. Any experienced tower ATCO will know that situational awareness is the main weapon he/she has in controlling the local area around the airport. Cameras can never replace the human eye / brain.


Its a bean counters scheme.
Vulcan Lover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29th May 2017, 09:04   #116 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Berkshire, UK
Age: 72
Posts: 8,064
Vulcan Lover. I agree regarding situatioinal awareness. Very early on in my career - like 50 years ago - my training officers insisted "Get your head out the window!" I fear that this new toy will take up more ATCO working time to the detriment of the task in hand.
HEATHROW DIRECTOR is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 29th May 2017, 14:51   #117 (permalink)

 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: LHR/EGLL
Age: 38
Posts: 4,166
I don't think you should knock it until you've tried it VL.

Have you visited the current City VCR?
Gonzo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th May 2017, 10:04   #118 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: River Thames & Surrey
Age: 68
Posts: 6,580
Quote:
Originally Posted by HEATHROW DIRECTOR View Post
Vulcan Lover. I agree regarding situatioinal awareness. Very early on in my career - like 50 years ago - my training officers insisted "Get your head out the window!" I fear that this new toy will take up more ATCO working time to the detriment of the task in hand.
Likewise when I was a trainee at Glasgow about 45 years ago; I had a Heron inbound to runway 10 and was sitting there gazing at my strips when my mentor* said 'your Heron's crashed'.
Of course it hadn't but it could have been true.
*George later became Centre Superindent at Prestwick centre.
chevvron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th May 2017, 13:12   #119 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Rapunzel's tower
Posts: 329
VL

I couldn't care less whether you believe me or not. Curious what theories of mine you were talking about though?

Cameras aren't replacing the human eye/brain, those will still be used intensively. Cameras will be used to maximise the field of view for controllers (more so than a traditional tower can). This view can then, "at the touch of a button", be overlaid with additional information to aid situational awareness - which you yourself have said is so important.
I agree wholeheartedly that situational awareness is a key factor, as is the ability to oversee the entire movement area during routine ops. (Situational awareness becomes even more important in other situations, such as low vis, when neither the view from cameras nor the view from a traditional VCR would be sufficient.)

You could argue that the existing view could be improved by building a new traditional glass tower at the airport - and I'd agree with you.
But that new tower wouldn't readily support the additional tools which are purportedly available and indeed the further tools envisaged and under development.

I'd reiterate that digital towers are not a cheap option (although, in most cases, I would expect the capex to be less than building all but the simplest traditional tower).
Providing their redundancy and resiliency are satisfactory then I believe digital towers are a better option, especially with a view to "future-proofing".

If the proposed digital tower at LCY is deemed a success (as judged on a variety of criteria - the most important of which is of course safety) it will be interesting to see what the uptake of digital towers is after the first few entrants into this brave, new world. It will also be interesting to see where other airports decide to locate them (on-site or remote). But those are choices, as indeed is building a traditional VCR, when a new tower is required.

The operating efficiencies envisaged "down the line" by the ANSP are, in this case, a long, long way off IMHO.

But only time will tell.
good egg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th May 2017, 13:27   #120 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: River Thames & Surrey
Age: 68
Posts: 6,580
Let's face it chaps and chappeses, good egg, however much experience he has, has apparently been brainwashed into believing remote towers are a good thing, which I admit they might be for less busy airfields, but most of us have the 'natural' scepticism and caution of an experienced Air Traffic Controller when it comes to such a radical change in the way we do things.
chevvron is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT. The time now is 15:04.


1996-2012 The Professional Pilots Rumour Network

SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1