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Guest Foizman

B744 landing in foggy Heathrow?

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Guest Foizman

Hi gents,maybe it's not the perfect forum for this topic but...why can't airplanes like the (PMDG) 744 land in Heathrow these days due to fog and low visibility?I thought that a CAD-III-autolanding feature is made for this situation. And I suppose that most of the Boings and Airbusses have this system installed. So how come the troubles in Heathrow these days?Any details from you real-flying pilots out there?regards,Volker

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hello Volker,most of airplanes can do that but think about how the system ils must work in an airport... no airplanes in front of the system (for interference) and so on ... and also meaning longest approach and delays hold and queues ...plus i must add how many aircraft and crew are able trained and get licences to land on cat III ... this situation occurs so not often that will it worth to get the expenses on training the crew maintening profiency every 28 days for crew and aircraft ...!!! ????not pretty sure ...i worked in a company in canada (not as pilot) where the max was cat I and the aircraft were legally sold for CAT IIIB .... but the expenses make non sense for the company to do that ???!!! delays occurs around 1,5% in ops ???!!money rules the world and as you re aware : the weather delays are not due to company ???!!!!see you

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Even in the sim, I had a lot of trouble not flying in, but flying out. Given the fact that there is (or was by this time I think) fog (moisture) and temperatures near or at freezing, icing is a major problem. In addition to that, taxing is also very difficult.Keep in mind that Heathrow is one of the most busiest airports in the world. ATC and pilots have enough trouble when they can see what they're doing.Ryan GamurotLucky to live Hawai'ihttp://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/supporter.jpg


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Ryan Gamurot
 

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I heard that the problem was with the 'ILS' beacons and that the freezing weather was disrupting the standard of accuracy of efficient performance. As you know, safety is paramount in the aviation world.........To say nothing of the taxying visibility too! I believe that 'Follow me' vehicles were in use.


Dave Taylor gb.png

 

 

 

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about real world training, i'm now doing my type-rating on the Avro RJ85/RJ100 and we do CATII/CATIII training right from the start .. our Avro's are capable of CAT IIIB autoland ..i guess they only accept the bigger planes out of economic interestJan

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I was having a family Xmas dinner last night, and one of the guys there is a BA Ops man based at Gatwick - whilst not as badly affected, he was saying its almost entirely the visibility that's the issue - both on approach and taxiing. The airport decided to pretty well close the runways for this reason, and so BA had to make the call on cancelling the smaller domestic routes as there's less inconvenience than the long hauls....Leo Woking, SEUK (nr EGTF)http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/supporter.jpg"Flight Sim isn't habit forming. I should know - I've been using it for years"


Leo

 

Wellington, NZ

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Movement rates at Heathrow during normal ops are about 45 landings per hour. In the fog of the last few days (that has now thankfully cleared), movements get reduced to 25 landings per hour.This is because aircraft take longer to vacate the runway, because they can't see the turnoffs properly. They also need to pass the CAT3 holding point before the runway can be considered vacated and landing clearance given to the next aircraft. This is to protect the localiser sensitive area. Aircraft within this area can interfere with the localiser beam, and this could be very bad for aircraft performing Cat3 autolands with no visual contact with the runway. Final approach spacing increases to 6 miles (from a normal 3-4) thus causing the cut in landing rates.British Airways, operating the vast majority of services had to take the majority of the cuts, and in my opinion, quite sensibly took the hit on the domestic services and the Paris and Brussels routes where alternative transport is avaliable (ie train and road).


Phil Brown

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Yes, the reason flights were cancelled was due to the decreased capacity,as mentioned the seperation goes up to 6 miles.BA and others would rather lose the low income domestic movements than the more high grossing long haul flights.I brought the 747 into LHR on thursday morning in 300 meters in freezing fog. It was actualy a nice sunny day all the way down to the last 1000ft!The forecast was obviously bad so I`d loaded an hours extra holding fuel.We held for about 35 mins in the end over BNN, then got vectors for a 18 mile final onto 09L.I set up for a 3B autoland with no decision hight ie 0R set on the radio mins.This meant we didn`t actualy have to see the lights till after touching down!In the event there was enough viz to revert to a cat 2 aproach if needed. This gives you more flex if you lose sysytems.For example if you lose the auto throttle on a 3b you have to go around, however if you have the viz for a cat 2 you can continue for the cat 2 provided you had the viz at the outer marker,or 4 dme in the case of LHR.It all gets a bit complicated with what you can and can`t do and what systems you need.I picked up the aproach lights at about 100ft and the aircraft did a good job landing straight on the centre line and giving rollout control with the autobrakes left in till < 50kts by which time we could see where to turn off the runway, its just a blur of lights in the fog till you slow down.When we got off the aircraft you could just hear the roar of reverse thrust coming out of the fog,you couldn`t see across to runway just a couple of hundred meters away.anyway that was the easy bit,the hard bit was the 4 hours it took me to drive home in the fog! cheersJon

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Jon,Your graphic account of 'what it's like' really was enjoyable reading. Thanks for taking the trouble to write, it's always appreciated by myself and so many more too.BTW "approach" is spelt with two 'P's' LOL ;-)Was in the area too on that day driving from Torquay - Harlow and back with the Xmas pressies for our grandchildren and the M25 was reduced to the 'Car Park' with nose to tail traffic all the way round the western side both ways!Hope you had a restful Xmas?


Dave Taylor gb.png

 

 

 

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Guest captaingrice

4 hour drive home - OUCH! Either you live quite a distance outside London, or you were another victim of the weather!Just out of interest, I speak with a Virgin Atlantic A346 driver who frequents another forum - and he told me that a certain pilot flying for Virgin Atlantic actually lives in Cape Town, South Africa! Now that's a commute! Cheers,

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