Australia, New Zealand & the Pacific Airline and RPT Rumours & News in Australia, enZed and the Pacific

Sydney ATC and PRM approaches

Old 15th Feb 2012, 21:50
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Too many planes, not enough runways.

Surely the Sydney airport layout has many more options available for runway usage. It has 3 runways. What about LAHSO on 16R,34L from about "K" that would give you about the same length as the parallel runway and start using 25/07 more. Most aircraft can take a 20 kt cross wind without tooooo much effort and also the runway lengths wouldn't be too restrictive for you avarage turbo prop or east coast run. Imagine the combinations you could come up with if noise sharing was not an issue, though it would probably completely screw the sids and stars.

While we are at, does the helicopter base have to be at the airport? I've seen the flow disrupted a few times due MED1 choppers. (Sorry chopper pilots, but this is all about me.)

Clark y.
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Old 15th Feb 2012, 22:09
  #22 (permalink)  
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Qestions

Thanks for the insight ferris. Any chance of clearing some things up?

Why is it that even when CTMS is met to the minute, an inbound flight will often still encounter slow downs, vectors, holding, or in fact all of the above. Is CTMS merely one layer in managing delays, or doesn't the CTMS system provide a viable solution?

Are ILS PRM approaches more efficient in processing arrivals than independent visual approaches? I ask because on the morning in question, even though aircraft were calling visual at 12 miles and around 4000 feet ( and I can tell you, at that point there was a clear run to both runways) why weren't they then instructed to make a visual approach.

Based on haughtney1's comments, he was thankful that his flight was processed in an expeditious manner so as to avoid the onset of the PRM's. Did he have a fuel problem? If according to ATC, PRM's are more efficient than ILS/IVA's, why was there a desire for him to be shortcutted? Why were other RPT flights who would have quite easily arrived before the onset of the PRM's for that morning delayed to the extent that they arrived in time for the PRM's ?
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 01:04
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Although I was not on the other morning i will try and clear up some of the questions people might have.

First on the holding then max speed then slow to min thing, there are so many variables in moving traffic in the TMA it's not funny!!! Is the director nailing the spacing on final or is he/she wasting a mile or two? Is the sector controller a minute late or early with his/her aircraft entering into Sy airspace? Is the aircraft on downdwind reducing to 180k and refusing to increase speed thus making it impossible to get him to the position on final where he should be? Is the tower trying to get a few A380's away which require bigger gaps on final because of the time it takes them to line up? Is someone on final refusing to call visual even though the guy behind is, thus requiring us to maintain a radar standard instaed of letting them close up on each other. These are just some of the things that can occur.

PRM appraoches allow us to have aircraft side by side in IMC where as ILS's require min 2nm between the finals thus reducing the arrival rate. Even though your downwinds are longer we are excepting more aircraft on PRM so the actual delays are less.

Not Clearing an aircraft for a visual during the PRM approach, maybe the guy next to you has not called visual so we still need you on the PRM approach as we could have to break you out if they stray into the NTZ.

MED 1 choppers don't come to Sy but they land at hospitals under the Approach paths eg RPA, Prince of Wales and St George. In full IMC the tower controller can not visually seperate inbounds with the helicopters as he/she can not see the aircraft. In this case a gap in the arrival traffic is required.

I urge people to come and sit in with us and see how it all works, everytime pilots come and watch they always remark how useful it is to see things from our side
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 03:13
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I urge people to come and sit in with us and see how it all works, everytime pilots come and watch they always remark how useful it is to see things from our side
Useless unless it's done during the peak arrival periods, having a look during the 9 to 5 period is a waste of time.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 04:45
  #25 (permalink)  
 
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If you can continue to the airport with constant ground/water visual contact, you are VISUAL. Director doesn't care if you can't quite see the runway or approach lights yet (unless you are VH- reg).
Not by the definition according to regulations I operate under. In order to call visual, I am required to have the runway environment in sight along with a specific company visibility requirement in terms of ceiling and reported horizontal met visibility, both of which are more restrictive that the legal limits.
For example, we are established on the ILS 16R at 7 miles, in clear sight of the ground and assuming the localizer and G/S signals remain valid, we can continue to the airport....but we are not visual, nor would we call as such. I'm not remotely interested in what the director considers visual or otherwise, the crew flying the aircraft are the SOLE judge and arbiters' of this statement.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 05:18
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I'm not remotely interested in what the director considers visual or otherwise, the crew flying the aircraft are the SOLE judge and arbiters' of this statement.
Directors and Approach controllers will be always relating to the words in the the Australian AIP for 'visual'... If your SOPS are different then so be it, don't call visual, it's not a big deal, but it's very strange (and possibly difficult to fit the right spacing) when 5 in a row are visual and the next 5 after you are visual...
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 05:59
  #27 (permalink)  

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haughtney1

I'd be interested in a reference for your Visual. It doesn't accord with my understanding.

AIP ENR 1.1, Sect 12.8.7

A pilot in command operating under the IFR who desires a visual approach and is satisfied the visual conditions as per 12.8.1 can be met must report 'VISUAL'.

AIP ENR 1.1, Sect 12.8.1 (precis)

Visual conditions for IFR by day

Pilot has established and can continue flight to the aerodrome with continuous visual reference to the ground or water,

visibility along the flight path is not less than 5000 m, or the aerodrome is in sight.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 06:25
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Capt Claret, yep no probs, 1st thing, I'm flying a foreign reg aircraft on a foreign license. Secondly, under my SOP's (approved by CASA in order to operate in Oz on a foreign AOC) I apply the most restrictive requirement to comply with achieving the required visual criteria
Lots of people in OZ quote chapter and verse about rules and regulations without ever considering that the same organisation who police these regs and create them, often approve subtle differences for foreign operators...particularly those who have more restrictive rules or company policies i.e. who I work for. (mostly due to the fact that we operate from ILS to ILS or RNAV to RNP etc )

FWIW, the rules I operate under are a carbon copy of the JAR/EASA regs, the kicker in this situation is that I have a company restriction that says I am compelled to use the approach that offers the highest level of safety, regardless of operational expedience, so in order to commence a visual approach I must either have the minimum visibility with the runway environment in sight, or I am within the defined circling area with the runway environment in sight.
There is no ambiguity, it is what it is.
In practice that means we will call visual when we see the runway(cat 1 requirements or better), but will continue to use the ILS for guidance.

Last edited by haughtney1; 16th Feb 2012 at 06:32. Reason: sentence construction
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 07:16
  #29 (permalink)  

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haughtney1,

Understood. Thanks.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 09:47
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jj232 said:
PRM appraoches allow us to have aircraft side by side in IMC where as ILS's require min 2nm between the finals thus reducing the arrival rate. Even though your downwinds are longer we are excepting more aircraft on PRM so the actual delays are less.
I cannot reconcile how a 20 mile downwind followed by base then a 20 mile final at min speed, twice the distances normally applied to an ILS/IVA, even with the min 2nm spacing, provides actual less delays. I can tell you it does not feel like it from a pilot's perspective who have to do this approach regularly, particularly after flying at min speed since entering Class E very shortly after takeoff. I am yet to meet another pilot who say they would much rather a PRM than an ILS/IVA. Everyone I know hates hearing those dreaded letters 'PRM' on the ATIS.

I also arrived into Sydney that same morning where we were visual at 4,000 and still had to contend with this approach. Can you please advise what criteria you guys use when applying the PRM approach and why we would have had to suffer this when visual at 4,000? You could just about hear the frustration in everyone's voice, "Visual at 4,000." (Why the f*ck are we doing this?)

Please understand I am not having a go. I know it is here to stay and would just like your or any ATC's take on the issues I have raised.

Thanks

Last edited by Jenna Talia; 16th Feb 2012 at 10:06.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 13:08
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Jenna, it's all about the acceptance rate & your position in the sequence. No. 1 lands & the rest follow at whatever time spacing the acceptance rate specifies. If you're no. 23 you'll land 22x the spacing behind no. 1.

PRMs allow for an increased acceptance rate so the average spacing between landings will be less. You're still no. 23 but 22x the spacing is a shorter time.

Focus on the landing time. Whether the delay is achieved by a 20 mile downwind or a pattern it's still a delay. And you'll still land 22x the spacing behind no. 1. Understandably it feels worse because you're tracking away from the runway!

I'm not a SY TMA controller but I think jj232 answered your question: "maybe the guy next to you has not called visual so we still need you on the PRM approach as we could have to break you out if they stray into the NTZ".
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 18:26
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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Sequencing 102

Blockla says...
If your SOPS are different then so be it, don't call visual, it's not a big deal, but it's very strange (and possibly difficult to fit the right spacing) when 5 in a row are visual and the next 5 after you are visual..
Haughtney says..
I am compelled to use the approach that offers the highest level of safety, regardless of operational expedience,
So, is it starting to gel? regardless of operational expedience
Next: Some seem to be under the impression that PRMs cause delays, when, in fact, PRMs are being used when the delay becomes large. Confusion seems to exist about what is causing the delay. Which brings me to what I believe is the crux of the whole thread- Profile uncertainty. Obviously, when too many a/c arrive around the same time, delays ensue. Delays. This is an immutable fact. How the delay is played out is what concerns people (because I really can't believe that gents here are so stupid to think that it is possible to somehow not have delays), and from what I hear over and over, it's because the pilot isn't in the loop and can't be ahead of the a/c and judge profile. Pilots often quote LHR as being the ducks nuts, where you hold until you leave the hold on a very rigid profile (prescribed speeds etc.). That could be how it is done, if thats what people want.* Yanks like their system , where you are put on a very long final, but (usually) know where you are regarding height/distance to run. That could be how it is done, if thats what people want.* There are other ways (some in trial stages) that would pleasantly surprise, as well. It's all possible.
*people means airline management, politicians, AsA management and....the public. All it takes is will. The will to hire the necessary staff . The will to change the necessary rules (think noise sharing idiocy- imagine how quiet CDAs from offshore holds to the correct runway would be...but I digress), the will to educate.

Disclaimer: I don't work in SY, or even Australia. However, it's amazing how common some themes are.
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Old 16th Feb 2012, 23:14
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A Pilot’s Guide to ILS PRM Approaches | Airservices
Read and watch the video
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 09:58
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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Thumbs up

Thanks to the ATC folk who took the time to respond. I have a better appreciation of most of the whys.

The one answer I could not find was the minimum wx criteria when PRMs are used? Is it 1,000 ft, 1,500 ft or other ceiling or viz and what does the wx need to improve to in order for ATC to cease the PRM approaches, or is it also a matter of traffic/delays regardless of wx?

My question basically relates to us and other aircraft calling visual at 4,000 ft with PRMs still being persisted with even after we landed.

Thanks again.
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 10:15
  #35 (permalink)  
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And that's the whole point isn't it Jenna. If the weather is crook and according to our ATC friends, PRM's are the most efficient way of processing traffic, then so be it. Problem is, on Wednesday the weather was far from crook. In fact it was VMC from 14 miles!

Leaves me wondering why we don't simply conduct PRMs all the time?

Am I missing something?
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 18:52
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Yes. A lack of staff (read; cost saving)
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 20:48
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So to improve the flow and have PRMs all the time, Airservices have to invest more in infrastructure (staff in this case). Once again loser, sorry user pays.
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 21:26
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"The one answer I could not find was the minimum wx criteria when PRMs are used? Is it 1,000 ft, 1,500 ft or other ceiling or viz and what does the wx need to improve to in order for ATC to cease the PRM approaches, or is it also a matter of traffic/delays regardless of wx?"

Jenna Talia, it's up to the traffic manager to decide if we run PRM approaches but basically anything less than full IVA'S, PRM is the way to go. The acceptance rate for PRM is higher than any ILS/IVA rate. One possible reason they continued with PRM'S the other morning is maybe the Met people were forcasting some cloud to come in sometime soon. It's not so easy to go in and out of PRM's due to the longer downwinds required.

The suggestion of PRM'S running all the time is a good one, if we were serious about using this airport anywhere near it's capacity then we would run PRM anytime we could not do IVA'S.
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Old 18th Feb 2012, 11:33
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OK, why do aircraft from the same company:

fly different speeds in the circuit,
fly different speeds on departure,
taxi at different speeds,
call visual when the aircraft in front hasn't,
call for pushback at the same time as their company, but don't push back at the same time,
line up at different speeds,
commence take off roll differently,
change level at different rates?

My last flight with xxxtas, my wife and I arrived at the airport ETD-45mins. We rushed to get there. We waited for an hour and a half due to maintenance issues. We were told nothing! Why were we told to rush and then told to wait? Why didn't the airline ring us and give us a "CTMS" for their problems?

I suppose we're lucky that we didn't get stranded, hey!

18nm final, or told to slow down then speed up...half your luck!

Life is life...get over yourselves.
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Old 18th Feb 2012, 12:56
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Life is life...get over yourselves.
Well said Towerboy!!
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