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Move RAAF/SAF Pearce To Learmonth/Curtin...

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Move RAAF/SAF Pearce To Learmonth/Curtin...

Old 8th Aug 2007, 09:37
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Move RAAF/SAF Pearce To Learmonth/Curtin...

I have said it for years...move RAAF Pearce to Learmonth. 300 plus days of sunshine a year..... finally use a taxpayer funded airforce base that never gets used (except the swimming pool)....what does this achieve:

returns the much needed airspace to the taxpayer

will reduce congestion at Perth by allowing random departure arrive tracks

save the airlines millions $$$$

gets all those low flying PC9's and Singapore AF jets out of the SW land division

would allow Gingin to become the new Jandakot further freeing up airspace and reducing noise issues

Both airforces get 300 plus days a year of sunshine for training

etc etc etc
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 09:48
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Sounds about as smart, and practical, as leaving the RAAF at Pearce and moving Perth city up to the Learmonth area!
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 10:10
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Ah spoken like a true serviceman or woman...
Could you explain WHY it is not possible? Richmond, Townsville, Darwin and Williamtown are all JOINT USER facilities... perhaps this is the first step, open Pearce up to civil users, then look at the move.
Why couldn't the operations that are currently located at Pearce be relocated to Learmonth? Oh I forgot, the brass want to live in a capital city, not the regional areas.
Do you have any idea how much fuel gets wasted every day diverting aircraft around Pearce?
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 10:32
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Originally posted on another thread but appropriate here!

Why should the RAAF (ie taxpayers) have to fund the massive costs of relocating the training infrastructure to an airfield that has been set up as an operational military base? Curtin does not have a satelite airfield like Gin Gin so a new one would have to be constructed. The RAAF has been at Pearce long before the majority of commercial operators started services.

The sensible thing to do is work out a more efficient use of Perth airspace and Air traffic procedures to get the most efficient outcome for all airspace users.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 10:52
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Wind-up alert.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 11:03
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In the late '90s there was talk of moving a fighter squadron up to Tindal in order to ease congestion at Willy. The reason the concept was axed? Katherine did/does not have the infrastructure to support the influx of several hundred people at once. Defence could support the move, however, healthcare and hospitals, housing, education, private enterprise for spousal employment etc dollars don't come from the defence budget (not my words, I'm paraphrasing the CAF of the day).

Notwithstanding our contractual arrangement with the RSAF, I'd imagine there'd be similar issues moving an even larger amount of people to Learmonth.

Does anyone remember the Dubbo superbase concept?
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 11:10
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ICARUS

Partly right - ex RAAF, and now with many more years out of the service than I was in. As 'GB' rightly points out, the RAAF have been training at Pearce since long before airspace usage was ever an issue. 'GB' makes a good point re joint user aerodromes and this apparently works pretty well at Darwin and Townsville, but I doubt that extensive ab-initio civil training at Williamtown, in the likes of Cessnas & Pipers would be either safe or practical. The same applies at Pearce where you would have low experience military pilots, flying high performance pseudo fighter type acft mixing it with similarly inexperienced civil students in their much slower training machines - may I suggest that it would be a bit like running a bicycle road race on the Mount Panorama track while the V8 Super Cars were also doing their thing. Not only different performance and vehicles, but also different rules of operation. As far as Richmond is concerned, it is not a true 'joint user' aerodrome as the only civil training permitted is ILS approaches. These require prior approval and be followed by a missed approach. Circuit training by civil aircraft is not permitted, except by the base's own aero club at weekends and in periods of reduced military activity.
Military airspace is not, by the way, sacrosanct! It is continually under review by a number of agencies, one being the RACS Committee which comprises of airspace experts from RAN, Army, RAAF, CASA and Airservices Australia.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 11:15
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Oh I forgot, the brass want to live in a capital city, not the regional areas.
You think its just the Brass?? Entire RAAF my friend.

Do you have any idea how much fuel gets wasted every day diverting aircraft around Pearce?
Yes I have a very good idea, and I love watching the dollar signs spewing out the back of the heavies as they haul arse around our airspace.

The RAAF finds it hard to get and retain people as it is, the problem would be much worse if we had to live in a shithole.

Face it Pearce is not moving anywhere soon.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 13:12
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Heads Up RAAFY CHAPPYS !!

just maybe I know something that you don't know but you will OBEY orders when they come down....or is the RAAF just another government junkent ride?????? The TAXPAYER directs the RAAF not the other way round!!! If the public want the land for other purposes then so be it.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 13:20
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EMU,
will reduce congestion at Perth by allowing random departure arrive tracks
Wrong. The congestion at Perth won't go away if Pearce is moved. The congestion is caused by the runway configuration and therefore capacity, as well as less than optimum sequencing due to the lack of radar and ADS-B coverage outside 200nm Perth.

All Pearce does is increase trackmiles for civil users.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 17:52
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If you're in the military you pay tax, you have every right to an opinion on how that tax is spent.

The Navy have it sorted even better than the RAAF, Watsons Bay anyone?
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 20:57
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There is no real need to move the base just change the airspace to the US sizes, ie a small control zone around Pearce/Gingin a 10nm circle or overlapping circles to 4000'AGL to cover both and then all the other high and low areas outside the zone covering the 2 fields can be reduced in size and turned into MOAs ie Military Operations Areas.
These are transparent to VFR who can opt to talk to radar for flight following and traffic alerting. They are open to IFR traffic IF the radar controllers can provide separation from the mil traffic.
Freakin simple and works here in US with a staggering amount of civilian and mil traffic.
Being on the coast any ACM dogfighting etc can be done offshore as could any work needing huge altitude assignments etc.
OR they can do it in remote areas overland as is done here.

I remember the RAAF always saying they and their students need "sterile airspace" for safety etc hence the enormous space they take up now and all the routing of civil traffic around these areas.
This is complete rubbish.
Civilian students need to learn how to fit in with and look out for other traffic from day 1. lesson 1 so they can too.
Pilots of Fighters of all types have been doing it here successfully for 50 yrs since jets were introduced let alone a PC 9 doing 240-270 kts.

NOTHING HAS CHANGED IN 25 FREAKIN YEARS PLUS that I have been flying.
Same story everywhere in Aust, Military taking up huge chunks of airspace completely unnecessarily just because that is the way it has always been done.

Lets move Australia into the 21st century and out of the 1950s mentality of entitlement and superiority that seems to pervade many areas of Australian aviation to this day.
Let all sides come together and find viable solutions ,based if necessary on overseas best practice instead of always staying with the status quo or trying to re invent the wheel all over again at staggering cost and then using that as the reason as to why it cannot be changed.
OK rant over.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 22:27
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Hear hear Aussie!

A lot more could be done, Williamtown/Richmond way as well...
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 22:52
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i remember in the late 80's when HMAS Platypus (submarine base at Neutral Bay) was earmarked for closure, the navy was fearful that HMAS Watson would shortly follow.(it has the best viewing wardroom in the world) the navy stacked the base with alot of high tech facilities to hopefully ward off the lefties. rest is history (for now!!!)
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 23:17
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Aussie, great ideas re airspace use. The main problem at the moment with the fighter airspace around Willy is that the airspace is released en-mass to the fighter controllers who are not ATCers. Therefore, they cannot provide separation, and perhaps even traffic information. Re-training would be required for these people to allow them to perform these functions, as per the rules and regs we have for defence ATC.

Rumour has it that maybe, one day, 2FTS will be on the move to ESL!

And I agree, if you want to attract people to the job, the places one is forced to live have to be liveable. No offence to the people of the greater Curtin area. I'm sure it's lovely up there, but not everyone would agree.

Cheers,

NFR.
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Old 8th Aug 2007, 23:31
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Keg

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Exclamation

Rumour has it that maybe, one day, 2FTS will be on the move to ESL!
Strewth NFR. The place is fogged in until mid-morning just about every day in winter. That'd play havoc with the sortie rate!
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Old 9th Aug 2007, 00:18
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I know Keg, but the fact that the airspace is fairly out of the way and under-utilised is the trade off. As I said, rumour only. And for added amusement, Bairnsdale would become the 'Gin-Gin' satellite airfield.....

Cheers,

NFR.
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Old 9th Aug 2007, 00:32
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The rumour that I heard was that the Hawks might move to East Sale but the PC9's and the SAF aircraft would remain at Pearce. That might free up some airspace as the Hawks chew up a lot more airspace during their manoeuvres than the PC9.
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Old 9th Aug 2007, 06:00
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So you are suggesting that the Australian Gov't would pay compensation to the SAF for breaking their contract to conduct training at Pearce (not Learmonth).
I can't imagine that happening. Therefore Pearce isn't shifting anytime in the near future.
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Old 9th Aug 2007, 07:59
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Not meaning to be contentious in any way but if fuel is a problem just come in on weekends, they don't seem to be up to much then.

On a serious note, Learmonth would be infrastructure heavy with a rural town that is already stretched seasonaly. The Hawks seem to tool up there enough anyway with their cool call signs. Scary Snake 07 on final..

Anyone who's been to Curtin wouldn't torment our volunteers with a long stint and same again with exspensive infrastructure. That and Derby is not a place you'd want SAF to think of as Australia's cultural centre.
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