View Full Version : Darwin Atc

7th Oct 2002, 15:03
Heard a rumour that the RAAF was withdrawing ATC and that Airservices were to take over the TWR and APP functions. Current RAAF ATCs to be offered contracts in Darwin until Civil ATCs from Airservices could be trained to take over on a permanent basis.

Anyone able to confirm this?

No Further Requirements
8th Oct 2002, 03:27
Hi Zarg. As far as I know the RAAF have no intention of leaving Darwin. It has been tossed up a few times as an option for overcoming the current manning difficulties, but is usually knocked down. The RAAF ATC empire want to keep Darwin as it is a good location for the controllers to build up their skills. I believe AsA are a little interested but would they want another outstation tower considering they are trying desperately to get rid of their ones at the moment? Would the smaller operators at Darwin be able to absorb/pass on the extra costs that AsA would charge for terminal services? (For those who don't know, the RAAF does not charge airways and landing fees at the moment in Darwin). It is a big issue and one that I would not like to go out on a limb about. A report is due out soon about the direction of RAAF ATC, so I suppose we will see then. BTW, where did you get your info from? Cheers,


PS Say hi to Shell for me! Hope she is enjoying things in Godzone.

8th Oct 2002, 08:12
Hang on.......

(For those who don't know, the RAAF does not charge airways and landing fees at the moment in Darwin)

Then why am I getting charged $16.50 per landing, surely DIA doesn't need that much for its new security guards!

No Further Requirements
9th Oct 2002, 01:14
Strewth. As far as I know they don't charge, but I am open to correction. DIA are an empire unto themselves. Just out of interest, what type of aircraft was this and is there a breakdown you can give us? Cheers,


High Altitude
9th Oct 2002, 01:38
Don't even start with DIA charges...

9th Oct 2002, 03:21
No charges at Darwin....we wish.

From the DIA website (link below)


Civil Aircraft (note RPT pay per pax only)


$14.00 + $1.40 GST = $15.40 per tonne MTOW (per landing) for Domestic
$15.01 + $1.50 GST = $16.51 per tonne MTOW (per landing) for International with the minimum invoice value/charge is $20 per monthly billing cycle

Advanced Purchase GA Light Aircraft Concessions (below 10,000 kg MTOW) landing charge rates per tonne registered MTOW (per calendar month or 30 day period)

Months Basic Fee (inc GST) Discount Fee (inc GST)
1 $425.00 $318.75
2 $825.00 $618.75
3 $1200.00 $900.00
4 $1550.00 $1162.50
5 $1875.00 $1406.00
6 $2175.00 $1631.25
7 $2450.00 $1837.50
8 $2700.00 $2025.00
9 $2700.00 $2025.00
10 $2700.00 $2025.00
11 $2700.00 $2025.00
12 $2700.00 $2025.00

The basic advance purchase fee is available only where an aircraft is not used for RPT services and has a MTOW below 10,000 kg. It is valid for the airport of purchase only.

The discount advance purchase fee is only available subject to the above conditions, plus a dedicated aircraft parking position also being leased/licensed by the operator for the period of the advanced purchase.

No other discounts are available (eg for rotary operations or maintenance stand downs).


Aircraft parking for over 30 days in public areas may be liable for a charge of $3.00 (inc GST) per tonne MTOW per additional day (or part thereof commencing at midnight) when no landing activity has occurred.


Refunds of unused advanced purchase fees may be available at the discretion of the General Manager and, if approved, will be pro-rata and subject to deduction of a $55 (inc GST) handling fee.

There is another section on charges per pax for RPT services. See http://www.ntapl.com.au/dia/aerocharges.htm for more details.

No Further Requirements
9th Oct 2002, 11:14
Hi. I know DIA charge all movements. I was talking about the RAAF charging - I don't think they do, but I am not sure. Anyone know if the RAAF levy a charge for ATC services or not? Cheers,


9th Oct 2002, 21:26
NFR, call me or speak to BM about this issue. Can't say anymore here. As for what DIA charges, the charges went up after Ansett went belly up, they needed to keep the money rolling in. Still, no doubt Airnorth' s 2 new Bras will keep the money rolling in for them. Keep safe buddy.

10th Oct 2002, 04:24
Hey NFR...how goes it...let me know what BM says if u could.

Propy - trying to email you but your email add has gone a mysterious walkabout...can you private message me with it? Dont forget to change that profile of yours.


10th Oct 2002, 11:26

G'day. mate. my information came from an impeccable source - a former ATC who used to work in YPDN who heard it from an other ATC who used to work in Darwin one or both of whom is/are living in Godzone! With me so far? :D

Will pass on your best to Shell - who may or may not be one of the above! :D :D

Oh, just thought, one of the above may still be working in YPDN TWR, though obviously not Shell! :)


11th Oct 2002, 04:36
Even if the RAAF don't charge or AsA don't charge on their behalf, I wouldn't have thought the charges for 30 nm of airspace would be too high.

Some of the smaller operators using singles would only be in RAAF aierspace at the moment until the CTR boundary, hence the extra charges would be negligible. 13nm

Now the savings made by the more efficient operation would out way the possible negatives anyway.

I think most operators would certainly prefer and be better off with Asa.

Just my oppinion.

11th Oct 2002, 06:55
If you think AsA are more efficient than the RAAF, you are seriously mistaken.
Time and again, when they run the numbers, AsA is much dearer to do anything.

11th Oct 2002, 09:57

sorry I wasn't very clear. I meant they are operationally more efficient.

As for what it costs to achieve their efficiency I have no idea. I simply see the results from my seat in the aircraft.

11th Oct 2002, 11:05
No worries. Just wanted to clear up any misconceptions. RAAF much cheaper, but operating under different imperitives.

Far be it from me to say they are not as good.;)

No Further Requirements
12th Oct 2002, 13:03
Hi all. God it is hot here at the moment. Anyway....

RENURPP, the Darwin airspace managed by the RAAF goes out to 60NM up to FL200. Actually, the RAAF owns up to the moon over Darwin but it is a 'permenant release' to Brizzy Centre. Just out of curiosity, why do you think AsA would be better than the RAAF? I know that AsA would implement traffic management plans immediately which would see most IFR flights tracking via 15 mile finals. At the moment, it is a 360 degree free for all. What do you fly and how often into Darwin?

Zarg, glad to hear the rumour mill is still working. Yeah, the AsA thing has been tossed up of recently, but I think the RAAF wants to hang onto YPDN for the time being. Lots of interesting times ahead though, AsA recruiting, Rhodes review, ATC retention allowance review etc etc.... Next month should be eye opening...



12th Oct 2002, 23:18

I fly 146, into and out of Darwin a couple of times a week. Have been flying in and out for 13yrs in all types including abinitio training.

Thanks for the info regarding 60nm. If Brisbane centre is responsible for the airspace, who charges for it?

I would have thought that traffic management was designed for efficient management of traffic? That sounds like a good plan to me.

I realise lots of pilots complain about extra distance required to track via SID's and STAR's at locations such as Perth and Sydney, BUT 10 extra track miles takes less than 2 mins extra in a jet and a little over 2 in a light twin - Brasilia, metro, speed aircraft. (fairly common inDarwin).

I am not aware of any SID's or STAR's that require an aircraft to track via a 15nm final in VMC with the exception of maybe Sydney.

The benifit is that you can plan for a STAR, SID you can't plan your approach for random vectors and speed changes.

I arrived in Perth yesterday and due to low traffic density the standard STAR was cancelled, in fact never issued, and we were given direct to a 6 nm final from 150nm. The way I see it is if traffic demands it I have no problems tracking via these procedures at all.

I believe if AsA were running the shop up there we would have more stability with regards to longer term controllers. If Alice Springs can keep, experienced and competent controllers then Darwin should be able to.

As stated some where above, Darwin is currently used as a training ground for RAAF controllers, brining with it the obvious problems of low experienced controllers learning their art.

If AsA took over, do you think approach controlling would be carried out in Darwin or some where down south?

The Crimson Fruitbat
13th Oct 2002, 02:27
Turning 15nm final in a jet without at least 2 to 3 aircraft in front (as in the jet is No 3 or 4)?? Where in Australia do they (AsA) do that as a standard practice for "traffic management" (noise abatement rules notwithstanding)??

13th Oct 2002, 03:25
A bit game calling a Bras and Metro a light twin. What are the rest of 'em in that case??:D :eek: :D

13th Oct 2002, 05:36
RENURPP - permit my compliments. In one reply you should have reduced most fears of TMP to rubble. In a well designed and managed TMP your type of operation can be advantaged by prediction. Other traffic can be vectored or tracked to intercept the flowed TMP to reduce delays. All operators benefit from the added safety aspect of a managed traffic flow. When traffic conditions are suitable cancellation of a part of the procedure is possible. The default to TMP has additional advantages in the case of RADAR/RADIO failure with predicted tracking and automatic traffic separation that is embedded in complementary SID/STAR design. A new TMP requires a short period of transition to safely embed the various procedures and that demands discipline and patience on the part of ATC and aircraft operators.

To the familiar callsigns herewith - GOODAY. :)

No Further Requirements
13th Oct 2002, 11:02
Howdy all. A traffic management plan is being worked on for Darwin at the moment to deal not just with today's problems, but for the expected traffic in the future. Hopefully it will be acceptable to all operators. It will involve more use of 18/36 as far as I know and a greater dependency on LAHSO. Here I go again.....no no, I won;t go on.

If AsA were to take over, a traffic management plan would be put in place and more than likely it would be the same one they are working on now. It would be similar to Cairns as the traffic disposition (ie, international airport with no seconday to take the GA lighties) is roughly the same. As for where the approach section would be run from, it is anyone's guess. I have heard both options discussed. Cheers,


son of koko
13th Oct 2002, 21:59
DN to AsA, greater use of LAHSO, TMP....... pipedreams!!!! This stuff and more has been discussed over and over and over. Didn't happen in my lifetime in DN and won't happen in yours NFR.

14th Oct 2002, 01:22

What I meant was light twins and Brass merto types all being similar speeds. 3 - 4 nm / min.

Having said that the metro does fit in the light category doesn't it.

14th Oct 2002, 09:25
No probs!

No malice in my post, just a bit of a self-pitying p!ss-take. Meant nothing by it apart from a giggle. Though you're absolutely correct in your definitions.

If you're talking weights though, its only the Metro II that slips under the magical 5700kgs (MTOW of 5670kg from memory, but I may well be wrong).

;) :cool: ;)

15th Oct 2002, 05:00
No worries,

I believe a light aircraft is one with a MTOW <7,000 kgs.

SM4 Pirate
15th Oct 2002, 07:07
IF ASA took over, the TMA airspace would be done from Brisbane, almost guaranteed, Tower staff would be reduced to similar to CB or CG numbers, I suspect about 12 only left (couple of conversion bodies is far easier, less uniform, more pay, know procedures, airspace design and operators; also need to have someone do the training of the civies) or sent there, new kiddies straight from the college.

Still talk of moving ES Approach to ML?

Dog One
16th Oct 2002, 09:59
M23 has a AUW of 7484 kgs

16th Oct 2002, 13:51
A bit off the topic of Darwin ATC, but to pick up on the weights ...

As far as ATC is concerned, RENURPP has the right criterion for "Light". 7000kg is the cutoff for "Light" in wake turbulence categories and that's what affects us and you, traffic wise.

Interesting to note that for a short time, certain Metros were operating at my place as wake turbulence Light while on night freight ops, medium for daytime RPT.

The other definition of "light", <5700kg, seems to me to be rather arbitrary and often b u l l s h i t, though I do understand it is an ICAO benchmark.

eg we can't point a Twin Otter at certain obstacles because it is less than 5700kg MAUW and therefore supposedly cannot outclimb them in the event of engine failure. Yet it is STOL and goes up like a love-sick angel.

On the other hand, a DC3, which can barely outclimb the curvature of the earth all engines operating, and certainly cannot with one out (that has been demonstrated at my airport), can legitimately be pointed at the same obstacle IN IMC simply because it is >5700kg MAUW.

The rule does, sensibly, cover a PA31. Perhaps it needs to be re-defined.