PDA

View Full Version : Flying with Expired Nav Database


CommsBiff
23rd Mar 2015, 05:49
We are unable to update our C-130 FMS Nav Database after several attempts and plenty of issues with our equipment supplier / engineering authority. The database currently installed expired on 5 Mar 15 (18 days ago). This has not caused us a problem operating within our country. However, we now require to fly through the airspace of a dozen countries or so on a routine route.

It has been suggested that we can still use the FMS if we mitigate potential issues.

1. Program the route as normal, but check the Lat & Long of EVERY waypoint against current data (Jet Plan, Paper Charts).
2. Refrain from accepting RNAV SIDS/STARS.
3. For re-routes, again program as normal, immediately check against current data (Jepp Mobile FD / standalone EFB).

I can see the above is a sensible approach, and similar to what you'd have to do if operating with a basic, non-FMS, GPS system. I still have doubts as to it's legality and have been unable to find any source information from my online searches.

I have been informed that some small international operators update their Nav Databases every three cycles - is that true?

What I am really looking for is a pointer to some clear info from a relevant source (FAA, CAA, etc), but also happy to enter into productive discussion on the subject.

safelife
23rd Mar 2015, 06:55
My outfit says: may fly with expired nav database if EFB is up to date and all waypoints are checked against charts on EFB.
Big European airline.

OK4Wire
23rd Mar 2015, 07:18
If you have up-to-date charts, and basically use them as the "master", then I see no problem.

CommsBiff
23rd Mar 2015, 07:18
Thanks safelife. That's good info to add to the limited knowledge bank.
Also OK4Wire.

Thai Pom
23rd Mar 2015, 07:30
All of the database issues come with a list of what has been changed. Check the list and you should be good to go.

Nightstop
23rd Mar 2015, 08:39
Your database must be current for P-RNAV (RNAV-1) and RNAV (GNSS) but can be out of date for B-RNAV (RNAV-5) i.e. en-route.

P-RNAV (RNP 1.0 required) can be used during all flight phases except final approach and can operate below MFA. Commonly used for STARs & SIDs.

RNAV (GNSS) can be used for final approach (RNP 0.30) and is similar to the above but requires GNSS and on-board alerting.

B-RNAV (RNP 5.0 required) is the basic en-route standard and is used for some STARs & SIDs. All flight phases are above MFA.

So, no problem with what the OP has suggested.

CommsBiff
23rd Mar 2015, 12:16
Nightstop, that's exactly the kind of specific information that is really helpful. So I can do some further reading, do you have a public reference (link) for it?

B737900er
23rd Mar 2015, 12:38
What does your MEL say?

cosmo kramer
23rd Mar 2015, 13:04
What does your MEL say?

Exactly what I wanted to ask:

The database currently installed expired on 5 Mar 15 (18 days ago).
On 737, this is a category C item. Needs fixing within 10 days or the aircraft stays on the ground.

RVF750
23rd Mar 2015, 13:29
Just so you know latest update added a new airway in Eastern Turkey, T888.

In case you're going that way. East of SIV.

dusk2dawn
23rd Mar 2015, 14:44
Never looked it up before but I'm surprised to find that current databases are a C item in our MEL:

O) May be out of currency provided:
a) Current aeronautical charts are used to
verify navigation fixes prior to dispatch,
b) Procedures are established and used to
verify status and suitability of navigation
facilities used to define route of flight, and
c) Approach navigation radios are manually
tuned and identified.
NOTE: For P-RNAV operations, two databases
must operate normally.


However, I cannot help to think that it will only be feasible within a limited area. From our little West-EU database cycle 1503/4 I count

8836 WPTs in both cycles
50 dies in cycle 1503
95 new in cycle 1504

2247 AWYs in both cycles
95 dies in cycle 1503
96 new in cycle 1504

1196 NAVAIDs in both cycles
21 dies in cycle 1503
1 new in cycle 1504

That alone will require a pretty efficient nav/ops department to sort out and list in a usable manner - wonder how many operators can provide that?

Anyway, interesting topic. I would suggest to make prior arrangement with ATC - they really don't like surprises.

B737900er
23rd Mar 2015, 16:45
If your database is 18 days old and your MEL is saying its category C, then your planes grounded my friend.

spannersatcx
23rd Mar 2015, 19:27
This is what the FAA MMEL says:
Navigation Databases C - - (O) May be out of currency provided:
a) Current aeronautical charts are
used to verify navigation fixes
prior to dispatch,
b) Procedures are established and
used to verify status and
suitability of navigation facilities
used to define route of flight,
and
c) Approach navigation radios are
manually tuned and identified.

So Cat C 10 days, with yours it is out of compliance, you can get an extension, max 10 days but that will have to go through your quality department to your National Authority.:eek:

MarkerInbound
23rd Mar 2015, 21:49
We also have in the MEL that the database must be current to use Datalink communications.

CommsBiff
24th Mar 2015, 06:43
Thanks for some great replies.

To be a little more specific about our situation. We are a small military operator. The FMS is new to our aircraft and the MEL does not (yet) include the FMS database.

While the MEL has some specific rules for civil operators, they differ to ours. Our MEL is part of our SOP and is to be used for guidance (and I don't mean that dismissively). The fact that it is not in there, means it is at the aircraft commander's discretion, as in fact it does for all the items that are in there.

From an operator's perspective, we are good to go. I really wanted to know what legislation there is out there from outside of the operator's perspective (we will take it if we're allowed to).

I have no doubt that we can navigate the aircraft accurately as all the information going into the kit to control our navigation will be current (as cross-checked from current documents including up to date charts). I believe that we are meeting our obligations to ensure accurate and safe navigation (unless there is legislation which says otherwise). We do not have datalink.

Once again, thanks for your perspectives.