Episode #113

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Afterburner Al

Episode #113

Postby Afterburner Al » Thu Dec 25, 2008 3:21 pm

As promised in the episode...a link to the EAA Radio interview with Jeff Shoup on the 25th Anniversary of NOAA-SARSAT and the new 406 ELT.

You can listen here


More archives are at http://www.airventure.org/radio
Last edited by Afterburner Al on Thu Dec 25, 2008 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Afterburner Al

Holiday Routing

Postby Afterburner Al » Thu Dec 25, 2008 3:37 pm

One topic we didn't get to in #113 is the preferred holiday routing created after the President opened up military airspace off the Atlantic seaboard. I had a chance to use this holiday route in a flight from Newark to Naples, FL on the day before Thanksgiving. We picked up some folks that had flown in from Hong Kong, which made our 3.5 hour flight much more bearable knowing that we hadn't just been sitting in another airplane for 15.

We left EWR around 3:30pm and once over the ocean I asked the controller if it had been busy and he said we were the first aircraft to use the holiday routing. So I ask you UCAP listeners: For all its fanfare do you think the effort contributed to better flow of passenger traffic? Consider the fact that the first airplane to use it during the busiest travel day of year was at 3:30 in the afternoon and could only carry 7 passengers? (and that day only carried 2)

Was this an effective tool or a empty feel good measure like Homeland Security's color-coded threat levels?

Below is a link to some photos I took. One is waiting in line at EWR. (we are 10th for takeoff behind the 1st RJ off in the distance)

The 2nd is a photo of our route as displayed on the Multi-Function Display. (Note that the route comes ashore near Orlando)

The third picture is a sunset shot of Cape Canaveral (note the reflection of the sun off the nose)

10th_in_line_for_takeoff_at_Newark.JPG
Sunset_over_Cape_Canaveral.JPG
Turkey_Day_Holiday_routing2.JPG

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lucaberta
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Re: Episode #113

Postby lucaberta » Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:08 am

Afterburner Al wrote:As promised in the episode...a link to the EAA Radio interview with Jeff Shoup on the 25th Anniversary of NOAA-SARSAT and the new 406 ELT.

You can listen here

thanks Fareed, much appreciated. Just listened to the audio clip, and things happened in pretty much the same way as UCAP #113, with Jeb mentioning PLBs just at the very end of the ELT-focused segment.

Two thoughts from someone who, being also a ham radio and satellite expert, knows a little better than average the topic under discussion.

1- as Jeb mentioned (and Jeff Shoup did too!) the true big breakthrough in the switch to 406 MHz is the fact that we now move from an old-fashioned analog signal, only trackable by means of using doppler-effect from LEO (low-earth orbit) satellites like the NOAA-KLM series (whose primary mission is weather imaging), to a brand new and much more intelligent digital modulation that also includes the identity of the ELT/PLB/EPIRB that has started to look for attention.

This is *huge*! Not only the digital 406 MHz can be tracked by GEO (geosynchronous) satellites which are always there, but also the identity of who is in distress can be ascertained right away and phone calls to the appropriate contact people can be made.

Because the truth of the matter lies in the fact that the vast vast majority of 121.5 MHz distress signals caught by the LEO satellites turn out to be false positives! And this is why SARSAT/COSPAS is shying away from analog, simply because so many false alerts exists with 121.5 MHz. Cry wolf, cry wolf, and when finally the wolf comes, nobody will believe you any longer...

2- Jeb and Dave also mentioned that new 406 MHz ELTs can also be hooked up to the on-board GPS system, so that upon activation there will be already a position sent together with the identity, and that will further narrow down the search to a much smaller area compared to non-GPS-assisted 406 MHz (let alone analog 121.5 MHz). I have a PLB which has this feature too, and also have integrated GPS. So the moment I should turn on the alarm (PLBs are manually activated) an initial lat/long will be sent, and by the time the GPS receiver internally located in the PLB will pick up the location, a new an updated set of coordinates will be sent to the GEO satellites for broadcast down to the Rescue Control Center.

My ultralight plane here in Italy does not require nor have an ELT, but I always carry with me the PLB, even on short flights. You never know. The best $600 I spent, hoping to never have to use them... weird!

Thanks for another great episode! I liked the An-2 references, as I said in another thread on this forum I flew on An-2 as skydiver pax in Cuba, and even get to sit on the right seat during cruise for a while... ;)

Ciao, Luca
Luca Bertagnolio, CPL/ASEL/AMEL/ASES/IR

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PilotBillFromTexas
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Re: Episode #113

Postby PilotBillFromTexas » Fri Dec 26, 2008 1:33 pm

There's no doubt about it that the 406mhz transmitters are a big improvement over the 121.5 units. As Jeb mentioned, not many crashes are found by use of the ELTs alone. Like in the case of Steve Fossett, the ELTs often don't survive the crash any better than the occupants. Maybe the focus should be on making these things more durable. At least your survivors might be able to cash the life insurance check earlier.

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Re: Episode #113

Postby Scofreyjet » Fri Dec 26, 2008 2:34 pm

I added this link to the shownotes, but I'll post it here also - Steve "Stephen Force" Tupper's interview with a senior Civil Air Patrol officer (Deputy Director for Operations) about the ELT changes. As I recall, it was pretty interesting.

http://airspeedonline.blogspot.com/2008_01_01_archive.html
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champguy
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Re: Episode #113

Postby champguy » Sat Dec 27, 2008 1:21 am

Even I can see that the new ELTs are far superior, but always looking for a problem, what happens if there are as many accidental signals with the new equipment as there have been with the old. Granted they will have names and phone numbers to start out with, a big plus, but will there really be the manpower to find all the planes transmitting accidental signals that didn't have an accident. With the new equipment there will be more pressure to do the leg work and track down every signal rather than just dismissing the signal if no flight plans are overdue.
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Re: Holiday Routing

Postby fordan » Sun Dec 28, 2008 1:03 am

Afterburner Al wrote:We left EWR around 3:30pm and once over the ocean I asked the controller if it had been busy and he said we were the first aircraft to use the holiday routing. So I ask you UCAP listeners: For all its fanfare do you think the effort contributed to better flow of passenger traffic? Consider the fact that the first airplane to use it during the busiest travel day of year was at 3:30 in the afternoon and could only carry 7 passengers? (and that day only carried 2)

Was this an effective tool or a empty feel good measure like Homeland Security's color-coded threat levels?


Feel good, IMHO. I thought that the first time they did it. My understanding is that the major limitation of the system was a lack of runways to get aircraft in and out or major airports, and possibly a lack of controllers, not a lack of space to fly aircraft through. You fly during peak periods and peak areas more than I, or likely most others here do; what are your thoughts?

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Re: Episode #113

Postby Cavebear42 » Tue Jan 06, 2009 1:26 pm

I just wanted to add a few things on the 406MHz issue. I am no expert but, from what I have read:
1. Canada will not allow PLBs. Plan on buying a panel mount.
2. CAP can't afford to upgrade their SAR teams. Plan on keeping the 121.5 as well so you can be found when they actually come looking for you.

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Re: Episode #113

Postby Cavebear42 » Tue Jan 06, 2009 1:42 pm

One more, on the TSA madness. You guys talk about Dulles airport. I have some understanding that you might need to register if you are based at a Bravo. Let's talk about another "scheduled air carrier" airport. Stockton, California (KSCK) is a Class Delta in Northern California's Central Valley. A beautiful airport and Air Force One's choice when they are in town. From the web site, "On June 16, 2006 Allegiant Air began non-stop service from Stockton to Las Vegas five times per week." That's right, you can fly one airline, once a day, to one destination. (In all fairness, there is also a bunch of cargo service.) I am actually excited by the Vegas service but, let's be honest, most of the time the terminal is closed. Transient parking is just next to the terminal near the Mooney maintenance shop and down aways from Atlantic Aviation. This is a GA airport. Why do we need to all register if we want to be based here?

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Re: Episode #113

Postby PilotBillFromTexas » Tue Jan 06, 2009 6:34 pm

Cavebear42 wrote:2. CAP can't afford to upgrade their SAR teams. Plan on keeping the 121.5 as well so you can be found when they actually come looking for you.

The new 406 ELTs transmit on both 406 and 121.5.


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