Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Flying Instructors & Examiners
Reload this Page >

Student orbiting in the circuit

Flying Instructors & Examiners A place for instructors to communicate with one another because some of them get a bit tired of the attitude that instructing is the lowest form of aviation, as seems to prevail on some of the other forums!

Student orbiting in the circuit

Old 9th Jun 2018, 14:15
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 239
Student orbiting in the circuit

Any thoughts on whether a solo student should orbit in the circuit for spacing? on an air-ground service so wasnt instructed, so personally ! see nothing wrong with it, others seem to hark back to a case when a student stalled it, and crashed, maybe he was told to do it and wasnt self initiated, different mindset.
memories of px is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2018, 15:39
  #2 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Bristol
Posts: 159
I think there are various hazards in orbiting in the circuit in addition to loss of speed, such as blind spots in the turn and ultimately flying for a short time in the opposite direction to the circuit. there are other things that can be done in anticipation such as extending the heading on the initial climb on runway heading or extending the downwind leg, but one tecnnique I suspect is rarely taught or exercise is slowing down, flap one, reduced power and hence lower airspeed.
anchorhold is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2018, 23:10
  #3 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Temporarily Unsure!
Posts: 192
Agree. I don't think orbiting in the circuit is a safe option. Better to extend or climb into the overhead and start again if slowing down isn't an option.
rarelyathome is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2018, 23:57
  #4 (permalink)  

Avoid imitations
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Wandering the FIR and cyberspace often at highly unsociable times
Posts: 12,161
I was taught (RAF) never to extend downwind, especially in a busy circuit. If one extends, the next one has to extend too and so does the next. Before you know it, aircraft are well outside the ATZ, therefore technically having left the circuit.

Better to extend upwind instead, which doesn't put aircraft so far away.
ShyTorque is offline  
Old 10th Jun 2018, 07:57
  #5 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Uxbridge
Posts: 571
Definitely not allowed by our Airfield Rules and backed up by F.O.B.
MrAverage is offline  
Old 10th Jun 2018, 13:45
  #6 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 5,876
The only time you should orbit in a circuit is if requested by ATC otherwise if you need to adjust your timing, the correct procedure is to go around from wherever you are, and reposition downwind. The worst example I have seen was an instructor who told his student to orbit in the opposite direction to the circuit, whilst on a test!
Whopity is offline  
Old 10th Jun 2018, 20:17
  #7 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Yorkshire
Posts: 478
You can always 'go-around' at any stage in the circuit and therefore turn towards the deadside before continuing the next 180deg of the turn back onto the downwind leg - effectively an orbit. Off course it's not going to work out so well if one flys those strange 'square' circuits.
H Peacock is offline  
Old 11th Jun 2018, 05:25
  #8 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 254
You can't conform to SERA 3225 (operation on and in the vicinity of an aerodrome) if you are orbiting in the circuit, so I've always worked on the basis that orbits in the circuit aren't allowed unless under the direction of ATC. There was a CAA reference somewhere but I can't find it at the moment.
this is my username is online now  
Old 11th Jun 2018, 11:04
  #9 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: UK
Posts: 1,378
Agree. I don't think orbiting in the circuit is a safe option. Better to extend or climb into the overhead and start again if slowing down isn't an option.
This is the right answer.

Only ever orbit at controlled fields with ATC instructions and ultimately they're keeping an eye on the spacing.

At an uncontrolled field, you have no idea what's behind you, and they may not even have a radio, so orbiting is quite unpredictable and could lead to lots of confusion, as well as the solo student controll issues you have raised.

Extending downwind also has the problem of making the circuit longer and longer for everyone behind.

As above, the only real options are to slow down, or if spacing is too tight, go around and fly another circuit.

I don't really see extending upwind as a solution, as you would have to realise the spacing will be tight so early on, I wouldn't expect that level of situational awareness from a freshly minted PPL, let alone a solo student.
RTN11 is offline  
Old 11th Jun 2018, 11:27
  #10 (permalink)  
BBK
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 397
I believe there was a fatal crash a few years ago when ATC asked a solo student to orbit in the circuit. Havenít got time to find it on the AAIB website so perhaps someone can find a link. Tragic accident.
BBK is offline  
Old 11th Jun 2018, 12:21
  #11 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Nigeria
Age: 52
Posts: 4,444
Originally Posted by BBK View Post
I believe there was a fatal crash a few years ago when ATC asked a solo student to orbit in the circuit. Havenít got time to find it on the AAIB website so perhaps someone can find a link. Tragic accident.
https://assets.publishing.service.go...BABB_07-07.pdf
212man is offline  
Old 17th Jun 2018, 20:57
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Uk
Posts: 168
We are A/G only and a guy (not a student) asked today to do an orbit, because he was closing on the one in front, when we had 6 in the circuit, some following him...

I fear pilots in this situation do not know how to fly a go around from the downwind or base leg..

3wheels is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2018, 20:01
  #13 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 5,876
Originally Posted by 3wheels View Post


I fear pilots in this situation do not know how to fly a go around from the downwind or base leg..

Maybe a few posters around your airfield would educate them.
Whopity is offline  
Old 19th Jun 2018, 14:37
  #14 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: UK,Twighlight Zone
Posts: 7,202
Our students have to orbit all the time in Jerez. Its up to the Instructor to ensure they are adequately prepared for the situation before sending them solo.
S-Works is offline  
Old 19th Jun 2018, 20:17
  #15 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 337
As a student, I was instructed to do an orbit when on final (I'd guess I was at around 400ft) due to a Sea King appearing over the threshold (he'd misheard an instruction to remain clear of the runway ).
I remember monitoring airspeed and adding some power, and it must have worked out ok
Bigears is offline  
Old 19th Jun 2018, 21:32
  #16 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 5,876
Your instructor should haved briefed you that in the event you cannot continue the approach, you should go around; you should have practiced this before going solo. At 400 ft an aircraft on approach is not configured to do orbits and ATC should not have requested you to orbit. If it was not ATC, then they should have told you the runway was obstructed by a large helicopter, you do not want to be anywhere near the wake of a SeaKing!
Whopity is offline  
Old 19th Jun 2018, 21:34
  #17 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: UK
Age: 81
Posts: 696
Those of us who did training at Manchester airport will remember orbiting over the "Flats" for bloody hours and hours waiting to land.
Happy days!
funfly is offline  
Old 20th Jun 2018, 09:00
  #18 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 5,876
At busy airports you have little choice, but at least you have ATC to coordinate things. At uncontroled airfields the prospect of meeting someone going the wrong way because they have deceided to orbit rather than go around is dangerous and unnecessary. What ever type of airfield you operate from, instructors should brief their students accordingly and make them practice all manoeuvres they are likely to have to do before ever sending them solo. That is why we have Restriced FIs, so that they learn all the necessary skills before being let loose to send students solo.
Whopity is offline  
Old 20th Jun 2018, 15:05
  #19 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: UK
Age: 81
Posts: 696
Originally Posted by Whopity View Post
At uncontroled airfields the prospect of meeting someone going the wrong way because they have deceided to orbit rather than go around is dangerous and unnecessary.
I was never happy with the "Overhead Join" for exactly this reason. Is it still standard practice?
funfly is offline  
Old 20th Jun 2018, 15:20
  #20 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Uxbridge
Posts: 571
At a lot of airfields yes, but if done correctly there is much less likelihood of opposite direction traffic.
MrAverage is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.