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NZAA Sequencing

Old 3rd Feb 2012, 18:43
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NZAA Sequencing

The last three or four times I have been into NZAA the sequencing has involved a lot of ¨speed up....slow down....turn left ....¨etc etc . It seems that the latest STAR's are quite prescriptive with heights and speeds yet they are not used to any great effect.
I have two questions for anyone involved in the Air Traffic System there;
1/ Do you think the designers were being a bit optimistic when they required a 10 knot speed reduction from 250 to 240 about 30 miles from touch down?
2/ Why don't you just give everyone a required time at Aradi or Basiv or Jabba or similar and let them sort out the profile and speed to achieve that?
Cheers
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 19:29
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Being Australian based you should be well used to it. Auckland is a dream in comparison. I can't remember when I last had any speed control. Usually vectors to extend prior to joining final approach if spacing is needed.

250kts to 240kts? I can't remember where that occurs but hardly a huge adjustment.

I agree with your second point. More use of time over waypoint should be used. Probably one closer in though.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 19:44
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They are working hard to expedite the pesky local Kiwi airlines coming in from the south; these local heroes sometimes declare visual from way out ( they being very familiar with NZAA ) hoping to beat your weary long hauls to be first onto the runway. Occasionally NZAA arbitrarily give priority to the QF or Air NZ guys coming from LAX eventhough others are nearer and well ahead.

You are initially told to speed up and then a local hero checks in onto the approach frequency, and before you can say " jack rabbit " you are given a wide turn way off with instructions to slow down. Then when the local hero stuff up his hasty visual turn to base and go around, you are immediately told to make a direct turn to Emrag or Oreso and told to speed it up...or even worse, you are vectored all over the place so that he can come in for a second approach ( that is if he is really visual; the first stuff up was probably because he lied about being fully visual, then he will have to be radar vectored to the localizer ). Well, like anywhere else, local ATC give preferrence to certain people......
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 21:24
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There is apparently an advancement of the CAM system being introduced in August named AMAN. This WILL require you to be at waypoints at designated times. Issued by ATC enroute.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 21:31
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framer,

It's good to know that they don't just get the locals to slow up, go fast turn right turn left etc.

Sampan Angkasa,

You seem very bitter. I fly into NZAA and have never experienced the sort of antics you refer to.
Then when the local hero stuff up his hasty visual turn to base and go around, you are immediately told to make a direct turn to Emrag or Oreso and told to speed it up...or even worse, you are vectored all over the place so that he can come in for a second approach ( that is if he is really visual; the first stuff up was probably because he lied about being fully visual
Also perhaps you need to also check the requirements for a visual approach by day, there is no need to have the airport in sight, just a requirement that you can be sure of maintaining visual reference with the ground at all times.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 22:10
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And the atis generally advises if to expect a visual app so act know what the domestics are going to do. They will generally track you via Tomas or Kauri for the visual. A visual star such as ybbn would be much better
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 23:55
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A visual star such as ybbn would be much better
They do have visual STARS but not normally used and a bit of a Cluster Fcuk in my opinion.

2/ Why don't you just give everyone a required time at Aradi or Basiv or Jabba or similar and let them sort out the profile and speed to achieve that?
That's coming as mentioned by Woolley
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 03:42
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Auckland has no sequencing tool. There is CAM which tries to spread the Traffic out. It is commonplace to have 6-10 arrivals within 60nm as well as providing approach control for NZWP and NZAR.
Visual approaches can really relieve the pressure when there are a lot of arrivals. In saying that as soon as it starts getting busy most Aircraft will go around the back. Where possible Aircraft are kept on the STAR with speed control but because the STARS mostly have 2 90deg turns on to final it is not easy. Vectors and speed contol give certainty and accuracey for Gaps on final (minimum Radar Sep 3nm at touch down so bigger Gap required as aircraft establish on Final), at times bigger Gaps required due conditions.
Yes sometimes you will be sped up to get into a Gap and then slowed down to fit into the sequence. Yes you might have been able to get past the one in front but not the 3 in front of them.
The NZAR MBZ and Training Areas sure don't help either.
RWY05 is pretty hard to use with most departing Traffic having to be threaded across arriving Traffic.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 03:51
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The whole ATC system in NZ is a bit of a farce. I took off from NZCH recently number two to an Air NZ 737, both of us going to NZAA. No idea what they cruise at but I suspect it must be .74 ish as on first contact with 'control' he was asked to fly maximum speed of .76 an we were asked to slow to .74 or less. So here we were with 350nm to run and a jet designed to fly at .78 was flying at .74 and the jet designed to fly at .74 was pushing it up to .76. This was a bad enough piece of controlling but it was to get even worse when we both were switched over to the last control freq. before NZAA and the 737 was slowed to 250 kts due to a Dash 8 that was only 10nm ahead who had been sequenced as number 1 to land. We then we asked to slow to 'minimum clean'. So with 100nm to run we had a Dash 8 flying balls to the wall, a 737 flying 250kts and us descending at 220kts. The crazy thing was that the Dash 8 was the next aircraft to land at NZAA, we were all stacked up behind him. When I finally queried just why we hadn't been permitted to cruise straight past the 737 out of NZCH and then the Dash 8 into NZAA I was told that the sequence of us and the 737 had been determined by NZCH departures and the Dash 8 had been sequenced in front of both of us as he had reached some imaginary 'circle' that surrounds NZAA first. Apparently once someone has decided the sequence it is set in stone even if it is total bullsh*t. This is where I am constantly disappointed by NZ ATC, as in all the other parts of the world I have flown it is generally recognised that it is better for everyone to allow aircraft to be sequenced with regard to the perfomance of that type.

I have actually come to the conclusion that a lot of the reason for some of these problems is down to the fact that there are too 'many' visual approaches at our major airports. It seems to increase RT traffic 10 fold and lead to a much more 'fluid' situation which is much harder for a controller to sequence properly. I think our controllers are 'out of practice' at proper vectoring and IFR operations. Every time the weather requires instrument approaches into NZAA the whole thing falls to pieces, it is all 'speed up' then 'slow down', panic ensues if you turn finals any closer than 6nm behind the traffic in front. They want to see Heathrow where it is unusual for there to be more than 2.5nm spacing between arrivals or 5nm if someone is planned to depart in between. The problem is that NZ skies are now becoming quite busy in comparison to how they have been, maybe it is time to leave the GA attitude and stupid visual approaches at NZAA in the past and start acting like a grown up airport.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 12:44
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On my usual monthly visit, it never seems OVERLY busy, although more than 6 aircraft within 50 miles might tax the system me thinks
Having said that, the standard of controlling is usually pretty good, even if the approach guys either don't want, or dont have the equipment to provide reduced separation closer in.
As for getting cut up by the little guys, we are required to be fully configured by 1500 AAL, and stabilised by 1000' so by 6 miles we are coming back from 180 towards 160 and eventually 150ish, I used to do 180 kts in a B200 till two miles without any problems...can't be much harder in a 1900 or Dush 8? Surely a shorter final and wings level at 5-300 AAL would stop the visuals that use either the motorway or the eastern end of Puhinui road as a base turn reference?
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 15:24
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quote:As for getting cut up by the little guys, we are required to be fully configured by 1500 AAL, and stabilised by 1000' so by 6 miles we are coming back from 180 towards 160 and eventually 150ish, I used to do 180 kts in a B200 till two miles without any problems...can't be much harder in a 1900 or Dush 8?

the answer to your question probably lies in your first statement. no chance a dash can do 180 to 2nm without foqa tearing you a new ring!
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 04:10
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and a 1900D can do 240 to five but you won't see that happen anymore either.
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 05:19
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Devil

Good grief people !!

Time a few of you took a chill pill and a spirituous libation of your choice.

Be a real shame if you actually had to " fly " the aeroplane once in a while.

Do I detect a measure of jealousy from those who are either discouraged from hand-flying, or who arrive too tired to push a few more buttons ? At a time when most companies are hell-bent on removing what little fun is left in it, I would have thought you might look forward to the odd visual approach. Or is it all just too stressful ?

On many other threads on this 'site pilots bemoan the fact that flying skills are being lost to automation. As poor as you think the quality of AKL ATC might be, (which is arguable ), at least they give you the odd chance to play like a pilot again, like some of you used to enjoy.

Regards Tpad

Now pass that rum Matey!!
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 14:28
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Every time I see another thread about sequencing bitching from the sky gods, I doe a little more inside. It is all pretty simple yet so complex and is a game of seconds.


Assuming a non arrivals manager type program (eg Meastro), the arrivals guy from the North gets a rate he has to give the approach guy, the guy from the South a rate (directions may vary) and then the appproach guy catches them. The arrivals guys make those rates happen however they can. Speed ups for number one then varying degrees of slow down for everyone else. The approach guy then has to put these two (or three or more) streams on the runway. This means that perhaps the number one from the North may not be number one for the runway and hence, has to slow down after going fast..... and vice versa from the South who was number two there but is now number two to the runway beating number one from the other end....

Now, for an arrivals manager type program (eg Meastro) throw in crews who are too retarded to do what is asked of them and magnify the above.....

... but you already knew this,...... right?
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 21:33
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No need to get snarky chaps. The questions were simple
.
Every time I see another thread about sequencing bitching from the sky gods, I doe a little more inside.
I wasn't bitching, I was genuinely interested in the answers and had an open mind to learning something from you guys.


1/ Do you think the designers were being a bit optimistic when they required a 10 knot speed reduction from 250 to 240 about 30 miles from touch down?
By that I mean did they really think that the system was going to work so well that a ten knot reduction would actually be influential in creating the required separation and that controllers wouldn't be giving much greater reductions or increases well before this point?
and
2/ Why don't you just give everyone a required time at Aradi or Basiv or Jabba or similar and let them sort out the profile and speed to achieve that?
This question has been answered and I am glad that it will be introduced soon.
Now, for an arrivals manager type program (eg Meastro) throw in crews who are too retarded to do what is asked of them and magnify the above.....

... but you already knew this,...... right?
Well I now know something about the type of person on the other end of the radio. I'l just asume an anomaly though and give the rest of the NZ controllers the benefit of the doubt.
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Old 6th Feb 2012, 03:35
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The STAR arrivals are being progressively changed to allow for accommodation of the Airways PBN change over. The public RNP AR approaches should be up and running at AKL this year as well so that eventually the instrument approach will mirror the visual approach.

Some tests were done on RTA arrivals at least 6 years ago and due to the shorter sectors on WLG AKL for the jets there was just not the flight time available to make any real difference without huge drop down in altitudes to reduce speeds, and RTA holding on the ground at WLG was not an option.

AH - We are told that Enroute ATC is required to deliver jets to AKL arrivals (126.0) at a minimum 10 mile separation. The difference in speed between an A320 (.78 you say) at 2000 feet above a cruise B737CL (.75) is not great enough time available to catch up and get passed with 10 mile separation at approximately 120 AA. What I see a lot of is the approach controller uses this gap between jets to put a Beech in and so really screw up the second jet!

However I do agree with you the "first ready and able to use the runway" is not a good departure planning method. How many times does CHC TWR (also know as Mount Cook TWR) fire off an ATR in front of a jet only to have the Jet RADAR vectored all over the sky to get through the ATR altitude.

It would be a simple matter to taxi the slower B733 to A7 or A2 and fire off the A320 from A6 or A3 and save lots of stress all around!

The real issue is that AKL has too many different performance types all trying to use the same airspace and ATC always protect the missed approach of Jet behind TP hence the big spacing.
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Old 6th Feb 2012, 04:19
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I'l just asume an anomaly though and give the rest of the NZ controllers the benefit of the doubt.
I am not an NZ controller and interestingly, where I do work, the retarded pilot is not the anomaly, it is pretty much the rule (save one or two companies). Unfortunately, in a past life I could always assume everyone was going to do the right thing but now, I expect them to do the wrong thing and go from there. An individual I work when asked what he does for a crust tells people he works with Special Needs Adults. Pretty close to the mark.


(*personal unrelated to NZAA rant follows but is on the broader topic of sequencing*)As for speed control, given with the fad in recent years of econ descents, what is a slow down to one is a speed up to another. As a result, everyone gets a speed and number one is made number one. As an example, a 738 stooging in at 240 knots given 300kts is a 60 knot speed up, that same 300 knots given to a F900 coming in at 360kts is the same but as a slow down.

When leaving the descent points to the pilots you either have to force them down at the same time/rate or add some serious track miles to keep your current spacing. Every 2000ft equates to about 10 knots of indicated. To just match the ground speeds of say an A320 at F240 staying high and an International A332 down low at F160 like they do early, you have to find 40 knots somewhere. This leads to catch ups and overtakes when you do as suggested with methods such as 'give me a time to cross a point and I will work it out' Someone is going to get slowed down and someone is going to get sped up. When you then bend someone out to keep separation, it is like you killed their dog usually followed by a question along the lines of 'if we speed up some more, will that help?'... sure, if you can give me 700 knots in the next 30 seconds it may....Either build more runways or expect that you WILLL get some Air Traffic COntrol inflicted on you in the form of sequencing. You are NOT the only aircraft in the sky (well maybe in Aukland you are )
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Old 6th Feb 2012, 06:19
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Dont forget NZAA is a single runway operation so at times you will be held up behind a Dash 8 to introduce a gap in the arrival sequence to facilitate departures.
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Old 6th Feb 2012, 07:55
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'descend now'

'you want me to descend now or when ready'




Get my gun......
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Old 6th Feb 2012, 08:46
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sigh.... if we really cared about the minute or 2 lost due to vectoring, i think nek time we would just plow thru that cell rather than deviate 20nm around it enroute. it's only coz we are in approach mode and close to landing that we get upset about it.
heathrow has standard 20 min holds, wow, akl has std 3 min lost due vectoring...
yawn......
i think the turbo prop drivers save the jet guys vectoring by going fast til 2nms final just as much as they may coc it up for them too.

c.l.
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