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Airfield General Night Floodlighting - White or Red

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Airfield General Night Floodlighting - White or Red

Old 2nd Aug 2020, 13:42
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Join Date: Feb 2000
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Airfield General Night Floodlighting - White or Red

One of the problems with remote airfields with little or no ambient lighting is the black hole effect.

Would lighting up feature such as buildings, trees with low amounts of red light as touristy buildings are often done, would that give you better depth perception and preserve your night vision. I'm thinking of lights planted low to the ground, pointed at 45 degrees from the horizontal and 180 deg away from the runway. I guess you could bathe fences and hedges and grass areas in low levels of light as well.

Would this work?
Ozgrade3 is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2020, 13:59
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Join Date: Jun 2000
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Night vision is for night fighter pilots. Not much call for them in outback Australia. Lots of bright white lighting is best so you can see the aerodrome from miles away.
Centaurus is offline  
Old 3rd Aug 2020, 05:42
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Done correctly a black hole approach and landing is not a problem.

desertduck is offline  
Old 4th Aug 2020, 15:45
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Join Date: Jul 2005
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The only lights of any use are runway centreline (if you're lucky) and edge and end/thld lights, the rest are just junk information. Other ground lights can actually be a hindrance. I was flying a circuit over a remote strip once where an adjoining street lighting pattern matched the light pattern of the (huge, covered in buttons) HF control head on the right side of the panel. As I turned base I got an optical illusion of the aircraft going in two different directions at once as the street lights moved in my right peripheral vision. Fun (not).
On that basis, having red panel and red ground lights would be problematic.

Black hole ? MSA -> distance vs. altitude checks and/or a good timed circling approach.
As Centaurus says, you want to find the airstrip.
The Wawa Zone is offline  
Old 5th Aug 2020, 04:00
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Join Date: Apr 1999
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In a remote area you will find that a well laid out set of runway lights will stand out like a dogs bits.
desertduck is offline  
Old 5th Aug 2020, 05:57
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The more lights the better. Brighten up that terminal, carpark, the works. The critical bit is on final below 1000ft. I'm not using the DME scale then, I'm using my eyes and the PAPI. Lots of white lights, even off to the side, help me keep my brain level. Would you rather land in daylight or at night? That's why.

Red is for wine only.
Capn Bloggs is offline  
Old 5th Aug 2020, 13:22
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Join Date: Aug 2017
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Done correctly a black hole approach and landing is not a problem.
That would have to be post of the year!
Double_Clutch is offline  
Old 5th Aug 2020, 20:07
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Join Date: Feb 2000
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Two things that not uncommonly kill at black hole airfields.

1 undershooting on final into the ground. Not as common but doable as that famous photo of the 4 engined jet in a lake in Africa showed. Mitigated well with GPS these days. Either RNAV or home frown (VMC) profile from runway threshold.

2. The other one which is harder to mitigate is the somatogravic illusion on departure. Two incidents I can think of - YBTI and YBRM in the recent years, as well as the KingAir mentioned by Centaurus in a recent thread. Much harder to eliminate with airport lighting as you are flying away from the aerodrome when the illusion hits, with nose high. You’d need a wide expanse of lighting 5nm+ away from every DER to make it work. Clearly not something that is practical.

oh, and not much need for red for night vision preservation when 99% of aircraft flying at night have a GPS that is not night vision compatible. Or an EFIS. They ruin any adaptation immediately.
compressor stall is offline  

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