View Full Version : NAS Website Part 11

29th Nov 2002, 23:41
I notice Dick carries an article on his website criticising the CASA for not observing cost restraints:


When do we see an accurate cost evaluation of NAS?


30th Nov 2002, 22:26

Like Father McKenzie - "... writing the sermon that no-one will hear ..."

Chief galah
1st Dec 2002, 01:49
The CASA info kit is rather intriguing in the wording of points 2 & 3. To wit....

".....it is recommended that any traffic advisory calls be made on the Multicom frequency 126.7"

"It is recommended that you use the CTAF calls and procedures when using Multicom."

For a bold new step into the first of many changes, I find the use of "recommended" weak and misleading. Normally our regulators like to lay down the law by using "shall", but in this case they seem to want to avoid actually referring to it as a CTAF, even though it is just that in any other respect.

AND, of course, we can all remember the dimensions of that area to which we cannot refer!!!

Are we expected to make transit calls for every "aerodrome, landing or alighting area" (as they refer to them) that is enroute, if we are below 3000' AGL? That will require a lot of preplanning
from the charts, and a lot of frequency management whilst enroute. Maybe that's where the recommended comes into it, which means nobody will bother.

Hardly a improvement to the system, although I can't help thinking we're being set up for something much bigger that will relieve AsA of providing frequency monitoring over vaster areas.

Additionally, I find the info on AERIS fairly thin for my ops. If they can put METARs on there, then I think it would not be too difficult to bung the area QNH, er sorry, Enroute QNH, onto the AERIS system.

Any comments?


1st Dec 2002, 10:26
Can't remember whether this has been mentioned in the last 12 pages, but I note that the FIA frequencies and their boundaries are to be removed from all charts, and I understand that the process has already started in AIS to do this. I am unsure if this includes the ATS sector frequencies as well.

This appears to be is another directive without thought of the implications.

Open Mike was asked for the reason for this at the last Victorian RAPAC and he stated "Chart Clutter" The questioner stated that he had never heard of any complaints in relation to this. There was no further discussion on this at that meeting.

One wonders at the dificulty in finding the corect frequency and its area of coverage after these are removed. I have thought that the amount of chart clutter caused by printing the frequency and the boundaries was more than acceptable given the relevance of the information. Maybe they think that the removal will only affect the VFR traffic - the traffic they don't want in the system. And is there to be a different rule for those IFR pilots that suspend IFR to enable a VFR or VMC Climb/Descent in Class E - or do they too become invisible to the system.

I note also that the blurb that came in the Mail this week described requests for the Area QNH as unecessary radio transmissions!! I just get angry when I see such crap.

1st Dec 2002, 10:52
Chief G..... the use of "recommended" is an attempt to change the culture of the Australian pilot.

In the USA, if a procedure is "recommended" then it is likely that you will see almost total complience. However the culture in this country is that to get the same results it must be mandated.

With your second point, remember that a CTAF is a procedure and not a block of airspace even tho it may be given dimensions. Good airmanship should dictate that calls in a CTAF should relate to the speed of your aircraft and what needs to be sorted out from the time you make your first call. This I suggest should always be time based, and I suggest for most operations it is about 7 minutes out as a min.

As for making calls when at low level, there is no need unless you are going to use such a landing area. If you are down in the sticks then monitor 126.7 if a bit higher, then center or FW. Remember it is just recommended!

Chief galah
2nd Dec 2002, 04:52

Thanks for responding. I think my point is that while in some instances
we are being regulated to death, and paperwork abounds, suddenly
up pops "recommended". Very chummy. Immediately, there are several interpretations
of the word, including your US example, which really doesn't cut it with me.
I believe the intention of Multicom is to reduce centre frequency use by
eliminating irrelevant calls - nothing wrong with that - however there is nothing
in the instruction that leads me to think we will all be following a standard procedure.
Basically, I think pilots need to see something set out in black and
white, so we all know everyone else is doing the same thing.
Standardisation I believe it's known as. The lack of
guidelines does nothing to promote standardisation.
Given the amount of complaints you hear about those
who stooge thru the circuit, or arrive, unannounced,
I can't imagine Multicom changing any of that.
The widespread, low level, non AsA frequency area is sounding more plausible to me.
As for changing the culture of Australian pilots -
good luck, mate!!


2nd Dec 2002, 05:18

There is indeed the intention to remove FIA boundaries from the charts, and to simply replace them with something below the CEN frequency information, either denoting where the VHF outlet is located or the "area" served. How you work out where one "area" starts and another ends is a mystery. Another of Dick's wants evidently, and Open Mic was just parroting that as he does.

Down the track with "E" corridors all over the place there may be chart clutter, but it will be because of the corridors, not what I believe is essential frequency information.

As the safety regulator, CASA will have to make a call - as they will with just about all aspects of NAS.

2nd Dec 2002, 19:40
Is the 126.7 recommendation simply a way a obtaining an Australia wide OCTA frequency for VFR aircraft by stealth?

Wasn't this a preferred option from AsA before but rejected? The thrust seems to be to encourage VFR pilots to say "stuff it, I'll stay on 126.7". That way it saves all that troublesome frequency changing:rolleyes:

Like everthing else, it will all be great until the first death or three, then watch the ducking for cover. Legislation works back to front it seems. Run it up the flagpole, then when it doesn't work the coroner gets to look in to it all and make recommendations. Meanwhile the high flying managers who implemented the changes have moved on to greener fields to slash & burn.

3rd Dec 2002, 02:26
We get the info on airspace changes (in my case) the day they occured.
VFR and IFR are now on different frequencies (Which is good, because now we can all depend on see and be hit alone (SARCASIM)).
VFR and IFR are now on different QNH's sometime(Which is good because now we won't be as close as we used to be to correct altitudes so we can practice (and depend on only)see and be hit even more).
And don't confuse someone in the military signing off on (some of)this with everyone in the military agreeing to it.
And that Hansard record of MS vs Sen K O'B, a classic of all time that inspires great confidence in the management of this.....

Edited for a poorly aimed shot, coudn't tell the difference

3rd Dec 2002, 05:30

126.7 was the class G frequency in Dick's G demonstration trial. Which turned out to be so congested as to be unusable .....


I understood the "Mr Smith" vs. K O'B was Mike Smith, not Dick. Not that there is much difference between their philosophies -

3rd Dec 2002, 18:40
From pages 9256-9257 of the House of Representatives Hansard for 2 December 2002, copy at http://www.aph.gov.au/hansard/reps/dailys/dr021202.pdf
Aviation: Reform

Mr JOHN COBB (2.32 p.m.)—My question is addressed to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport and Regional Services. Would the Deputy Prime Minister inform the House of progress the government has made in airspace reform? What benefits to the travelling public will flow from these reforms, and are further reforms being undertaken?

Mr ANDERSON—I thank the honourable member for his question. We have been pursuing quite a bold and aggressive program of aviation reforms, and a key element of that is airspace reform. Whilst it has been acknowledged that in Australia for many years we have had the best upper level airspace system in the world, it is also the case that in relation to low level airspace there is room for improvement in Australia. Properly carried forth, those reforms can produce improved safety outcomes and a more economically competitive environment, particularly for light aviation, and we want to see light aviation in Australia continue to grow and to enjoy better growth prospects, frankly, than perhaps has been the case in recent years. We are seeking to reform the present system in a way that will make it easier to use, reduce costs for the industry and for the travelling public, and at the same time maintain the highest possible safety standards.

To progress this, I established a special aviation reform group, comprising the chairman of CASA, Ted Anson; the chairman of Airservices Australia, John Forsyth; the secretary of my department; the head of the Air Force, Air Marshal Angus Houston; and Mr Dick Smith. They have been reporting on how best to harmonise Australia’s airspace arrangements with best international practice, and it has been an engaging process.

Opposition members interjecting—

Mr ANDERSON—I am glad that the opposition is so interested and supportive. The group reported at the end of March and recommended the adoption of the American national airspace system, NAS. On 13 May the government considered it and agreed with the recommendation. We set up an implementation group. That is well and truly under way, established and operating out of Fairbairn with the cooperation and help of Defence.

The implementation of NAS will proceed in three stages. I am delighted to be able to say that the first two elements of stage 1 took effect on 28 November. We are now formally embarked on airspace reform in Australia. The third element, which will involve new procedures for the climb into E airspace will be introduced in March 2003. The aviation reform group is currently finalising the timing for stages 2 and 3, and I expect to be advised shortly in relation to this. That is only one element of our aviation reform program. A couple of weeks ago I announced major changes in relation to CASA that will involve the establishment of a regulatory reform task force and new, enhanced and fairer enforcement procedures which have been very widely welcomed by industry. I welcome that. They have been welcomed too, I think, by CASA, recognising that they will improve relationships between the regulator and the aviation industry and the players in it. I note too, and welcome, the opposition’s support. We are also moving to corporatise Airservices Australia, which, incidentally, has just announced a cut in the costs of its services, a welcome boost to aviation at a time when it needs all the competitive pressures being brought to bear that are possible. That, incidentally, amounts to a very significant real reduction in its charges over recent years—always something to be glad of. So there is a lot happening in aviation. We have a very forward looking reform agenda, but I am particularly pleased to be able to tell the House that airspace reform—long needed, in my view, in this country—is now under way and cannot be stopped.

6th Dec 2002, 17:41
Could some kind knowledgeable person advise me on the plans for MBZ airports. In particular BME with its CAGRO and Ayers Rock.


7th Dec 2002, 08:58
What do those of you who fly high perfomance aircraft think of the proposal to remove directed traffic information in class G airspace? Im thinking particularly of those parts of Oz away from the East coast that have no radar coverage.
I would be very interested to know if pilots flying turboprop or jet aircraft into busy non-radar environments find the existing DTI a useful service in arranging self separation OCTA. If so, are you concerned about the prospect of recieving no assistance from ATC to self separate below F180?
This to me is the greatest flaw in the NAS model (as it was with LAMP) Do you think that self announce and see and avoid is adequate to ensure separation for aircraft doing 200+ kts?

Chief galah
7th Dec 2002, 09:36
I have just read the NAS implementation programme. Can anyone please explain to me where the cost savings, the improved efficiencies, the enhanced safety, occur with it's introduction. I can only relate to the how the changes can effect the area I'm familiar with, and I can't get any comfort from what I see.
Have a look at the NAS implementation, relate it to how you operate and how NAS will impact on your operations, both from the pilots side and the controllers side.
How can the possibility of parachutists descending unannounced through E airspace where IFR aircraft are blissfully operating to specific clearances, be considered SAFE? Just one scenario I can think of. Gliders? - not much cross-section there when they're heading straight towards you, silent as simitars and legally not talking to anyone. Over emotive - perhaps, but it's a sobering prospect. There has to be some hidden logic to it all.
E-mail me or put it in the forum - I need to be educated.

Four Seven Eleven
9th Dec 2002, 10:20
Chief Galah

We asked, and Dick said it would save $50 million. When pressed for further details, he became somewhat less than expansive.

Who knows what the truth is.

Unfortunately, your 'emotive' example may in fact be the price Australian aviation has to pay for Dick's personal crusade. The real cost will not be in dollars.

:mad: :(

9th Dec 2002, 14:49
So Messrs Smith we wait to be instructed, you would ignore the denizens herein at your peril.

Your silence so far has the potential to confirm your irrelevancy, dilettante and self proclaimed legend status in real aviation forums.

Chimbu chuckles
10th Dec 2002, 07:01
There are very few reasons why self professed 'experts' come on a forum like this to 'calm the troops' and when unable to answer questions honestly, and to the satisfaction of all, dissappear.

People who are competent, honest and without secret adjendas have no problems answering questions and debating a topic honestly until all are satisfied and a resolution, which can be enthusiastically supported by the majority and (more or less) happily lived with by the remainder, is the result.

I"ll leave readers to ponder where I believe Mssrs Smiths & Pike et al belong:mad:


11th Dec 2002, 01:11

[my opinions only here, not those of AOPA]

In the last month I have spoken with both Smiths on NAS. I am fairly happy with all aspects of it except perhaps 'see and avoid'.

I have flown within a 500 m 'GPS zone' of another (bright yellow) aeroplane and not found it despite 'I'm over the power lines' calls etc. Neither Smith has convinced me that the NAS version of see and avoid is perfect.

BUT, and this is a big BUT, neither is what we have now. I was very taken by an argument of the bigger 'Smith' that the problem lies in the culture of full reporting. I then spoke to a US friend who flies both privately and professionally and has flown in Oz. he basically confirmed what DS said commenting 'there is waaay too much radio chatter there'.

Another interesting perspective he had matched that of AsA/CASA Smith, that ATC in the US have a culture of being helpful, that is they will give you traffic where needed.

In oz there seems to be a culture of avoidance (no pun intended) probably brought on by too many lawyers in CASA and AsA and a subsequent culture of risk aversion.

Surely there is a balance somewhere. Trying to hold back the tide ain't going to work, but also Gaunty is right, there is a lot of expertise here, so instead of trying to stop the inevitable how about we all try to come up with solutions to make it work.


Beech Boy
11th Dec 2002, 02:27
Having trawled through the pages of this topic over the past hour or so and re-visiting the NAS website, there are several major concerns that I have, pointedly:

1. Descent:
Quite often we descend form C airspace through G, then E and into G again and then into a CTAF/MBZ for a landing. All this at high groundspeeds (up to 280/300 KTS GS) and descent rates of 1500/2000 fpm. Not to mention the rate of closure speed with any conflicting traffic.
The pilot workload, the FRQ changes, the level changes and the fact that there is “unreported” radar identified VFR traffic on or adjacent to our inbound track and in the circuit, make this an event a random “hit or miss” rather then -see and be seen- (announce and avoid, if you like) profile. I feel that this event at times is already so treacherous that it borders on being unsafe; to further remove DTI exacerbates the problem.

2. Information Transfer:
A Website;
Glossy brochures;
Amendments to an Operational Documentation Publication;
This is just not going to do it fellas!!!
There is no doubt that many professional and inquisitive pilots will be attempting to research the changes and “go with them” but this method of “Information Transfer” does not cover those pilots that are “less than enthusiastic”, the “fly every so often” and “just around the local area” kind of pilot which we/I will be exposed to.

The “system” can not excuse itself from educating and informing theses people, this is where I feel the danger lies. The system at the moment is for an aggressively inquisitive approach rather then the passive observer.
There will need to be a greater reliance on Information Forums and Seminars, and not just in the major cities this will need to be linked by a means of formalising/accrediting this “Information Transfer”.
This will be expensive but necessary regardless of the final implementation profile of the NAS!!!.

Chief galah
11th Dec 2002, 05:06
The only thing AsA management are interested in is reducing costs. (It looks good on their CV). So when someone comes along and says "it would save 50 million" - whooppee we'll have some of that, they cry. It seems to reduce costs means
#1 reduced controller numbers or
#2 pay them less.
A protracted (two years) EBA bargaining period has certainly seen #2 (if the whole two year period of zero wage growth is taken into account).
As for #1, if more controllable airspace is to be introduced, and controller numbers are reduced, then workload must increase. This may be feasible in some areas, I don't know.
However, if, as I have heard, NAS means a reduction of 25 consoles in Melbourne Centre, it's got to mean individual controllers will be responsible for huge volumes of airspace, operating who knows how many frequencies. I hope all this is taken into account for their sake.
All the chatter (and I don't think it's that bad), I find it comforting to hear a check in broadcast so I can know who's close by and my radios are still working.
But, I can imagine this must be irksome to the airline guys when RAS is combined on departures frequency. How many have had to level out at five thousand, waiting to get a word in, while some lightie goes through his area broadcast? Broadcasts, I might add that are sanctioned in CASA documents. Get used to it.
Radar coverage in the J curve , please remember that outside of 50 miles radius of the main centres, radar coverage is SSR only. Remote sensors are SSR only. Thus, if the transponder of a VFR aircraft in E airspace is unserviceable or not switched on, there will be no radar return OR TCAS RETURN.
The assertion by Bill Pike on page 10, that "....once Australian ATC get the feeling that this is "their" airspace, they guard it jealously..." Who in their right mind wouldn't with the legal mine field that goes with territory. I don't think Mr Pike has had to sit at a live console with the alligators snapping, when a not so switched on pilot (just like his radio and transponder) decides to take a short cut through the CTR. (Apologies to the alligators)
Just a few points to ponder between ourselves seeing we're not getting much feedback from those who know.

11th Dec 2002, 14:29
I think the regulators forgot about the effect of Avdata on the use of radio. In one fell swoop, Avdata, the parasitic monitors of 126.7, have been given a vastly increased source of revenue due to the vastly increased number of airports they can now go and canvas to collect fees on their behalf.

Human nature suggests that there will be a LOT of radio silence until such times as Spectrum Australia ( or whoever is currently involved ) outlaws the illegal recording of radio transmissions by Avdata for commercial purposes.

( The Telecommunications Act specifically makes it an offence, unless parties are made aware that the conversation is to be recorded, and then they have the right to decline having their phone calls or radio calls recorded)

When will ASA, CASA and other bodies understand this very simple issue? Avdata's recording of transmissions for revenue purposes creates a potential safety hazard.

The regulators won't ever understand until they are charged between $20 and $50 dollars for every town they pass through on a trip in their own car, using roads and bridges paid for already by various state and federal taxes.

This is what Avdata is doing to safety, they cause radio silence to occur, particularly amongst private owners and some VFR charter operators, as these groups seek to avoid the exhorbitant charges that are recommended by Avdata to Aerodrome operators. It is quite possible for these groups to rack up a bill of hundreds of dollars per day if they make radio calls.

Stealth mode is alive and well out there, thanks to Avdata.

11th Dec 2002, 17:34
Mainframe, I think you'll find that AsA and CASA are not the ones driving the changes. They have been directed by the Minister to give their support to the implementation.
And as for a safety case...no need for that...or so the NAS team says, because we are getting "the proven North American model".
The US airspace is a good, practical system, but there are a number of outstanding issues, like the one you raise, that just seem to be getting swept under the carpet in the rush to implementation. Will it work as well in Australia? Maybe. I'm not against the concept, but like you, I would like to know as best I can that there aren't any crocodiles in the water before I go in swimming. Unfortunately, the information is just not forthcoming out of the NAS implementation group.

12th Dec 2002, 03:33
The Telecommunications Interception Act only applies to conversations made over telecommunications networks. Use of aviation frequencies by aircraft does not normally involve use of a telecommunications network.


12th Dec 2002, 03:36
Unless it is trunked through the PSTN to a remote location.:D like just about everything in Aviation comms nowadays??.

12th Dec 2002, 04:03

Yes that occurred to me. But AsA use a VPN (virtual private network) and as such it isn't really a telecommunications network.

I'm looking into it, would love to put an end to AV-Ripoff, I am sick to death of getting billed for landings at Cooma when I go to Bunyan, or getting a bill for both Moruya and Carnarvon on the same day for a Grumman (must be a mach 2 grumman).


Chimbu chuckles
12th Dec 2002, 07:17
Snarek if they want to implement the 'North American System' in it's entirety...and I mean everyfecking part of it...then we will all applaud...they don't!!!

They are christmas treeing the cheap/free bits and handing the Australian industry a snow job.:mad:

If they had the strength of their convictions they would be able to debate and answer questions...THEY DON'T!!!


SM4 Pirate
12th Dec 2002, 09:36
I don't really care if they do want to pick what it is they want out of the US model.

But don't:
1) Tell us that your not doing that; and
2) Make sure that you are taking the same procedures to support the elements you're taking; half cocked ideas will go off half-cocked.

It worries me that (and yes I've seen the latest draft AIP SUP; and it sucks; we'll at least the explanation does, really Mr Smith you should be ashamed of yourself) we seem to be making it all up. A couple of people (you all know who I mean) went to the US and did some flying there, didn't follow the procedures correctly (on advice from operational staff) and formed the view that it is so simple in the US.

Get some experts from the US, controllers, RPT pilots, Charter Pilots etc. Bring them up to speed with what we do and then try to come up with an integrated package not just a chuck-it-together idea.

In the interests of achievement; rushed changes will cause no-end of bitter taste for the remainder of the project. Phase 1A (not phase 1B or TWO) is due on 20 March 2003 and they are still talking about how it will work and what the words mean.

Come on people; open up the details, let’s debate them honestly and then lets implement after thorough training, a change for the better. Not on the hope that it will reduce ATC jobs, but for the purpose of improving safety, increase flexibility and possibly improving cost bases.

I can’t believe you’ve got the date effectively in concrete yet still don’t know how much training, or the impact the changes will have, or what distribution of information is required.

You can't just focus on the costs, it only one part of it.

As for the 25 consoles mentioned earlier that they are trying to reduce in Melbourne... The movie 'The Castle' comes to mind, I’m off to buy the trading post.

Bottle of Rum

12th Dec 2002, 20:23
Guys, why don't you get yrselves a current US sectional... LA will do, figure out how to take your 210, ummm, ummm, lets see, Northrop-Hawthorne - Santa Barbara - Palmdale - Edwards - Cal.City - Reno, fr'instance, and see the future as it is now...

14th Dec 2002, 02:47
Closed Part 1 due to thread length and split last posts into this new one.
I've left both stickied and twisting in the breeze, until such time as we get a response from those who are responsible.

14th Dec 2002, 06:02
Can anyone enlighten me as to how charges are levied under the US model?

A thread in the ATC forum, started by yanks, lamenting imminent privatisation and a move to a USER PAYS SYSTEM, has me intrigued. If the US is moving to user pays, how can the US system be used as the safety case for NAS? We already have user pays here . Surely the way you pay for services will have a large effect on how you use those services?