CA_flyer12

28th Oct 2021, 06:39

Hello all,

Can someone help me settle a disagreement please about HAT?

So my 135 company uses HAT in our manuals to mean "height of aircraft above TDZE". And I get it. The letters HAT stand for "height above touchdown" ... so one would kinda expect the meaning of acronym to mean "height above touchdown". I get it. It's understandable. So in other words, my company basically uses HAT to mean "your aircraft altitude at any given point above TDZE". So for example - if you're 6000' above an airport at sea level, then your HAT is 6000'. And if you descend down to 3000', then your HAT is now 3000'. And so on. To put it another way, my company's use of HAT implies that HAT is variable. It changes with aircraft altitude. It's not a fixed value. As the aircraft ascends/descends, the HAT value changes. HAT varies. That's how my company uses HAT.

But here's my problem. The AIM indicates that HAT is "The height of the Decision Height or Minimum Descent Altitude above the highest runway elevation in the touchdown zone (first 3,000 feet of the runway)." It's a DH/MDA. It is NOT a measurement of aircraft relative altered to the airport at any given distance. So in other words, HAT is a DH or MDA (depending on the approach - let's just stick with ILS for sake of simplicity). So for an ILS, HAT is DH. DH on an ILS is a fixed value. It doesn't vary.

And by my logic, HAT does not vary. According to the AIM, it's a fixed value on a plate. It doesn't change with aircraft altitude. The HAT of an ILS (cat I) is 200'. If the aircraft is 6000' above TDZE (on a cat 1 ILS), the HAT is still 200'. If the aircraft is 8000' above TDZE, the HAT is still 200'. If the aircraft is 500' above TDZE, the HAT is still 200'. Ad nasueum.

But when I try to explain this to a check airman at my company, he just tells me I'm wrong. I've tried so many different ways to explain to him that the context of HAT in terms of how our company uses it is not the same context in which the AIM uses it.

Soooooo many different ways I've tried explaining it from different angles. For example, I even tried pointing out that the formula for VDP calculation is VDP=HAT/300. Well...there can only be 1 VDP per approach. If VDP is fixed, then HAT is fixed. If there's only 1 VDP, then there's only 1 HAT (per approach). And then I pointed out that if I use their definition of HAT...meaning that HAT varies with aircraft altitude...then you would constantly have numerous different VDP values as the aircraft ascends/descends...which makes no sense. As an example, using their definition of HAT (aircraft altitude above TDZE), if you're 6000' above TDZE, then my company says your HAT is 6000', so then your VDP would be 20 NM (6000/300 = 20). A VDP 20 NM away?! That's absurd. Why would a VDP ever be 20 NM away?! It's just ridiculous. The math on this example seems so simple to understand, and it seems like easy proof to verify HAT does not equal aircraft altitude above TDZE. This math seems like such simple logic to understand, yet no one at my company is picking up what I'm laying down. Feels like I'm banging my head against a wall.

Am I interpreting the AIM wrong? Any and all comments are welcome, of course. My goal isn't to prove I'm right. I just want an answer that makes sense. If I'm wrong, I'd simply like to understand why and have my logic invalidated with explanations that make sense (as opposed to just simply being told I'm wrong)

So all comments are welcome please. However, if a DPE could chime in...or someone who would be a particularly noteworthy/trustworthy authority on the matter...then I'd be enormously grateful for your input please.

Many thanks in advance!

Can someone help me settle a disagreement please about HAT?

So my 135 company uses HAT in our manuals to mean "height of aircraft above TDZE". And I get it. The letters HAT stand for "height above touchdown" ... so one would kinda expect the meaning of acronym to mean "height above touchdown". I get it. It's understandable. So in other words, my company basically uses HAT to mean "your aircraft altitude at any given point above TDZE". So for example - if you're 6000' above an airport at sea level, then your HAT is 6000'. And if you descend down to 3000', then your HAT is now 3000'. And so on. To put it another way, my company's use of HAT implies that HAT is variable. It changes with aircraft altitude. It's not a fixed value. As the aircraft ascends/descends, the HAT value changes. HAT varies. That's how my company uses HAT.

But here's my problem. The AIM indicates that HAT is "The height of the Decision Height or Minimum Descent Altitude above the highest runway elevation in the touchdown zone (first 3,000 feet of the runway)." It's a DH/MDA. It is NOT a measurement of aircraft relative altered to the airport at any given distance. So in other words, HAT is a DH or MDA (depending on the approach - let's just stick with ILS for sake of simplicity). So for an ILS, HAT is DH. DH on an ILS is a fixed value. It doesn't vary.

And by my logic, HAT does not vary. According to the AIM, it's a fixed value on a plate. It doesn't change with aircraft altitude. The HAT of an ILS (cat I) is 200'. If the aircraft is 6000' above TDZE (on a cat 1 ILS), the HAT is still 200'. If the aircraft is 8000' above TDZE, the HAT is still 200'. If the aircraft is 500' above TDZE, the HAT is still 200'. Ad nasueum.

But when I try to explain this to a check airman at my company, he just tells me I'm wrong. I've tried so many different ways to explain to him that the context of HAT in terms of how our company uses it is not the same context in which the AIM uses it.

Soooooo many different ways I've tried explaining it from different angles. For example, I even tried pointing out that the formula for VDP calculation is VDP=HAT/300. Well...there can only be 1 VDP per approach. If VDP is fixed, then HAT is fixed. If there's only 1 VDP, then there's only 1 HAT (per approach). And then I pointed out that if I use their definition of HAT...meaning that HAT varies with aircraft altitude...then you would constantly have numerous different VDP values as the aircraft ascends/descends...which makes no sense. As an example, using their definition of HAT (aircraft altitude above TDZE), if you're 6000' above TDZE, then my company says your HAT is 6000', so then your VDP would be 20 NM (6000/300 = 20). A VDP 20 NM away?! That's absurd. Why would a VDP ever be 20 NM away?! It's just ridiculous. The math on this example seems so simple to understand, and it seems like easy proof to verify HAT does not equal aircraft altitude above TDZE. This math seems like such simple logic to understand, yet no one at my company is picking up what I'm laying down. Feels like I'm banging my head against a wall.

Am I interpreting the AIM wrong? Any and all comments are welcome, of course. My goal isn't to prove I'm right. I just want an answer that makes sense. If I'm wrong, I'd simply like to understand why and have my logic invalidated with explanations that make sense (as opposed to just simply being told I'm wrong)

So all comments are welcome please. However, if a DPE could chime in...or someone who would be a particularly noteworthy/trustworthy authority on the matter...then I'd be enormously grateful for your input please.

Many thanks in advance!