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c97019

How to fly in Europe?

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Hello all,

 

I've been looking into flying GA and commercial aircraft in Europe but I'm not sure on how to go about it. As I understand it, the US has free publication of VFR and IFR en route charts, along with A/FDs, sectionals, etc., but the UK and I'm assuming other countries in Europe do not. I know there are websites that give SIDs and STARs for the big airports in the UK, but which charts do pilots use for general aviation that are similar to sectionals? I have yet to find anything that look similar to U.S. sectionals, but maybe I haven't looked around enough?

 

On the commercial side of things, which charts do pilots usually require to fly in europe? I have read that the controllers give the SID and STAR that a flight will use, so you can't plan for those, but aside from the terminal's SID or STAR procedures, which charts would a pilot need on an IFR flight? I'm assuming an IFR en route chart, but where does one find this?

 

Thanks for any and all information!

 

edit: Also, this could appy to New Zealand as well, as I'm looking into flying commercially there as well, not just with GA planes!


R. Dawson

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IFR charts here: http://www.afeonline.com/shop/index.php?cPath=26_302

 

GA VFR flights are normally well served by this: http://www.afeonline.com/shop/index.php?cPath=26_380

 

and this: http://www.afeonline.com/shop/index.php?cPath=26_396_176

 

or these: http://www.afeonline.com/shop/index.php?cPath=26_55

 

Pooley's is the bible for small airfields in the UK, France and Ireland: http://www.pooleys.com/prod_list.cfm?product_category_id=2&product_sub_category_id=71&menuHold=7

 

Main large aerodrome charts can be found here: http://www.nats-uk.ead-it.com/public/index.php%3Foption=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=99&Itemid=148.html

 

Eurocontrol has a lot of info too, and has a shiny new tool for PBN approach planning which went online the other day: http://www.eurocontrol.int/news/pbn-approach-map-tool-has-gone-live

 

Al


Alan Bradbury

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Ahh, I see, the actual paper charts, of course! Is there anyway to get some of these charts online? Or are they not available to be put up online? (I read something that said that it would infringe on copyrights to publish online or something like that...)


R. Dawson

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You can of course get EFB stuff too, but unlike some countries, many European nations do not make their charts freely available, you have to get your hand in your pocket. It's the same with satellite data and aerial photos which the Government take. In the US they take the view that since the people pay for the Government, the Government's pictures belong to the people, but in for example the UK, they make you pay for all that stuff, despite the fact that you have already paid for all that stuff with your taxes. As you can imagine, this is a sore point with people, but it's been like that for so long that most people have just got used to it.

 

This is also one of the reasons why there are far more Photorealistic sceneries for FS of US locations than there are of other places, because the data is freely available to developers, but anyone who wanted some photorealistic data for the UK to use for a set of FS sceneries, would have to pay for it.

 

Anyway, paper charts are really good for VFR in real life, since you can flip em over in a second and that makes it easy to identify landmarks you are over when coming at them from an unexpected direction, and the ability to use a grease pencil on them is still one of the handiest things you can do. GPS and EFBs and all that stuff are great, but I've never once had the battery go flat or been unable to get a signal on a paper chart.

 

Al


Alan Bradbury

Check out my youtube flight sim videos: Here

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Ahh, I see, that makes sense! So say one was a 'cheapskate' (..like myself, but I'm not pointing any fingers!) which charts would one need to efficiently (and I guess realistically) fly in Europe? I'm guessing those Aerodrome charts, and possibly the IFR en route charts, but which others?

 

Also, do you have a website or know of other information that I can read up to get knowledgeable on overseas operations, differences between ATC systems, procedure differences, etc?

 

Thanks for the information! :im Not Worthy:


R. Dawson

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Hello again! I figured I should just post in this one rather than making a whole 'nother post.. I did my first flight in Europe from EGCC to EGLL with the NGX. I got most of it down except I was confused on the ILS approach into Heathrow. I got the SID, STAR, everything but when it came to the ILS, I was confused. The wind was coming from 250 so I chose 27L (did it offline so I wouldn't screw anybody up in Europe!) but could not find the correct ILS approach option on the FMC. The chart I was using for the approach was:

 

http://www.ead.eurocontrol.int/eadbasic/pamslight-C5F333101183A33B4B4D94A271ADD9FD/7FE5QZZF3FXUS/EN/Charts/AD/AIRAC/EG_AD_2_EGLL_7-15_en_2011-06-02.pdf

 

but I could not find the correct option in the FMC. Is there any way that I can get the name of the approach from the chart? I was assuming it was OAK(something) but did not see any indication of which one it was on the chart. Excuse my noobiness if it's incredibly obvious!


R. Dawson

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Well, I'm no expert on ATC procedures in Europe (generally) or the UK (specifically) but the route you mention is one that I fly fairly regularly with British Airways Virtual; so maybe my inexpert comments will assist.

 

It seems you're out of Manchester with no problems and are making your way to Heathrow via the OCK 1D STAR ... called, at the top of the chart, "Standard Arrival Chart - London Heathrow - via Ockham (North and West)". By itself, all that this STAR does is to dump you into a holding pattern at the Ockham VOR where, if you do nothing else, you can go round and round getting dizzy until you run out of fuel - after which event, the dizziness will soon cease ;-)

 

However, you know that you want to land at Heathrow using the ILS for Runway 27L and the chart for that instrument approach is (unsurprisingly) called the "Instrument Approach Chart - London Heathrow - ILS/DME I-LL RWY27L". The chart shows that this instrument approach starts at 7.5 miles from I-LL and, once you get to this point, everything goes as smoothly as all other ILS approaches.

 

However, your remaining problem is how to get from the Ockham VOR (at the end of the STAR) to the point 7.5 miles from the I-LL localiser (at the start of the instrument approach).

 

This middle segment is what is covered on the chart labelled "Initial Approach Procedures ILS RWY 27L/R Without Radar Control - London Heathrow via OCK". Essentially this procedure takes you on the 077 degree radial from the OCK VOR then (at 12 miles from OCK) turns you onto a 360 degree heading until you cross the 065 radial from the OCK VOR - at which point you turn left and intercept the I-LL localiser. And after that, you'll eventually end up at 7.5 miles from the I-LL localiser when you switch to the Instrument Approach Chart for RWY 27L.

 

As far as I know this 'middle bit' can't be programmed into the FMC - Note 5 on the chart states that the procedure is not suitable for RNAV coding. So you'll simply have to use the heading setting on the Flight Control Unit to get you from the OCK VOR to the 7.5 mile point from I-LL. Usually, of course, this is the bit where ATC would be vectoring you around to intercept the ILS and you'd simply follow their instructions but offline there's no ATC so you need to follow the route covered by the chart for the 'middle bit'.

 

So, in summary, you need three charts - (1) the STAR (2) the Initial Approach Procedure & (3) the Instrument Approach. You'll be able to program the FMC with the procedures covered by the 1st and 3rd charts but will need to fly the plane via the FMC for the procedures covered on the 2nd chart.

 

Incidentally, the charts obviously contain the routing you need but they also specify various altitude and speed restrictions that also need to be observed to successfully carry out the procedures.

 

Incidentally, the link to the chart in your post didn't work for me and I don't know if hot-linking works for the Eurocontrol site - that's why I've given full chart titles instead of links but, just in case the links work for you, here they are for the 3 charts that I mention above.

 

STAR

 

http://www.ead.euroc..._2011-10-20.pdf

 

Initial Approach Procedure

 

http://www.ead.euroc..._2011-06-02.pdf

 

Instrument Approach Chart

 

http://www.ead.euroc..._2011-03-10.pdf

 

Hope this helps

 

Brian

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Just to pick up on something here as a veteran of 7 years controlling real traffic in the real London TMA, this is airspace I knew like the back of my hand.

The OCK1D STAR is a stack swap STAR it should never be used for flight planning purposes.

 

If you read point 6 in the notes at the bottom of the chart in the link provided it will tell you this :)

Its always important when operating into mega hubs to check the full chart and all notes because there are often procedures that are for ATC tactical use only and not for flight planning.

 

In the case of the OCK1D we would often implement this on days when the North Atlantic Tracks were Northabout bringing the morning transatlantic arrivals in over BEL/WAL and so on.

This when combined with the hugh early am rush of domestic arrivals would create severe congestion in the BNN hold and we would often end up holding at BNN, WCO and HON. It was not uncommon for an aircraft to hold at all 3 fixes in sequence. Starting at Honiley in the high levels, we would call them on to hold at WCO in which we only had 2 levels FL180 and 190 because it was not separated from BNN where we would hold from Min Stack level up to FL170, and then finally into the BNN hold before commencing approach into EGLL.

 

The traffic manager would identify traffic that was suitable to be stack swapped and we would then assign the OCK1D and they would be moved out of the BNN order into OCK. It was a simple case that if BNN was full then OCK generally was not because the transatlantic traffic was shifted to the North and thus via BNN leaving OCK with a few early am arrivals from Southern Europe and South America.

 

The traffic flow from EGCC to EGLL was always via a BNN STAR and flightplan altitude was FL180 Southbound and FL190 from EGLL-EGCC. Traffic on the EGLL/EGCC/EGLL segments was not climbed above FL190 because this took them into Area Control airspace and into the Daventry sector which did not want to work this traffic, so by capping at 180 and 190 the traffic was simply handled by London TMA and then Manchester control as we both had our airspace end at FL195.

 

General rules for EGLL, if coming into Heathrow from any point North of Compton and around as far East as Newcastle then use a Bovingdon STAR, South of Compton around to the Midhurst area you should file an Ockham STAR, from East of Midhurst round to the Lydd area file a Biggin STAR and coming in from North of Dover up to the North Sea use a Lambourne STAR and watch out for those stack swap arrivals of which Heathrow has many, one for each possible swap combination !

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