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Geofa

Which way to choose from A to B

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It's all about flying from A to B in a safe way. One can use the SID when leaving the Departure airport and one of the STAR's when arriving to the Destination airport. How do I choose my way between the SID an STAR? I can use a direct way, Victor Airways or Jet Airways. As far as I can see this issue their is 2 factors that decide which way one take: 1) the aircraft type and 2) the distance. Does anybody have any comments on this or maybe some kind of "rules of thumb" concerning which (air)way one choose between Departure and Destination?Kind RegardsLars

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I'll try to help Lars. As far as I know, direct can only be used for VFR. Therefore you are must stay below FL180 (18,000'), in the US. If you file an IFR flightplan, you use Victor airways umder FL180 and Jet routes above FL180. I hope that this helps. R-

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Actually you can file direct IFR, and a SID or STAR does not necessarily need to enter the equation. Remember, we have GPS now, and had RNAV before. Whether the FP gets approved or not is another story, but it is not unheard of. Keep in mind that not all airports have SIDS and STARS. Often you might be flying IFR from one uncontrolled field to another. Thus you would file to an appropriate point from which an approach can be initiated. Some great insight to the real world of ATC can be found here- Must reading.http://www.avweb.com/news/columns/182651-1.htmlCheck out the columns concerning IFR flight plans, and you will see that direct is not just for VFR. However, how you file the plan can make a world of difference!Regards,Lou

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As far as I've been made aware, you are still not allowed to file direct to your destination from your departure point. There are many technical issues as to why, one of which is actually explained in one of the articles you forementioned.----------------------------------------------------------------John S. MorganReal World: KGEG, UND Aerospace Spokane Satillite, Private 140+ hrs.Virtual: MSFS 2004"There is a feeling about an airport that no other piece of ground can have. No matter what the name of the country on whose land it lies, an airport is a place you can see and touch that leads to a reality that can only be thought and felt." - The Bridge Across Forever: A Love Story by Richard Bach

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Thanks for your replies and a good link to an ATC tutorial too. My conclusion is this at the moment:- GA-planes go direct (GPS or NAVAID's) or by Victor-airways - Jet's go direct (GPS) or by Jet-airwaisWhen Jet's have a short trip though, it would be smarter to take a low altitude (Victor airway). But I guess there are rules out there saying something about how low down Jet's are allowed to fly a route (even if it's rather short (say 200 NM).Lars

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LarsNo jets tend to go pretty high even on short routes. That is basically because at low level the fuel burn is terrible so even on a 200 NM run you may file for FL300 ish :-)and not below FL200.With the climb rates of jets it doesnt take long to climb to altitude anyway.Remember a Sid or a Star is a pilot interpreted means of getting you to a particular point along a set route where you can either hold or be in a position to make an approach.Often you are pulled off a Sid or Star and directed by Radar.You have to file a flight by airways choosing the ones that run in the direction that you are going.In flight you may request or often are given direct routes which allows you to cut corners but thats at the discretion of the controller.Peter

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The following is for IFR:Jets can fly V airways if desired and approved but must obey the speed restriction of 250 knots or less at or below 10,000 feet.A flight plan for any aircraft may request direct between intersections, navaids, or GPS waypoints. If a SID or STAR is available it might be expected to include portions in your plan.For major airports and popular routes the FAA publishes Preferred Routes. These may combine airways, direct between navaids, or whatever and tend to include portions of SIDS and STARS. There may be more than one preferred route between a departing point and destination. In such cases the route is selected by the type of aircraft performance and cruising altitude.That portion of ATC that controls radar departure and arrival is called TRACON. Some published preferred routes are available that are called TEC or Tower routes. These are for short flights of lower altitudes that follow a route where TRACON jurisdictions overlap throughout and your entire flight will be controlled by TRACON. The routes avoid the additional procedure of transferring control to ATC enroute Center, or ARTCC, in many cases providing a more efficient routing. Whether a TEC flight plan will be accepted is determined by the expected traffic loads on TRACONs at the time of your flight.In determining a flightplan there are several things to consider. Each aircraft type has better performance within certain altitude ranges and also must satisfy altitude limitations based on aircraft design and current weight. In addition the time of climb and descent must be taken into consideration as a percentage of the entire route.To keep things efficient for ATC they would rather in dense areas prefer you to use appropriate established paths to maintain an organized consistent flow of proper seperation.Depending on traffic density you may be offered direct paths voluntarily by ATC shortening your overall distance.You should also know that even flying VFR there are places below 18000 feet where you might be required to file as flight following above certain altitudes and be under ATC control. These are known as Class B airspaces usually surrounding major busy airports. Some have published VFR flyways to follow and you must be IFR equipped with a mode C transponder to pass through them.SIDS often have aircraft type restrictions and you may find an initial "direct" leg of 200 nm not following any specific V route during climb. STARS often have aircraft type and altitude crossing restrictions. Between a SID departure waypoint and a STAR arrival point you might find appropriate V or J routes. So, in conclusion, it is not in my opinion correct to say that GA always fly direct with GPS and jetliners always follow J routes. It is a mixed bag depending where you are and going, how high and what cruise speed you desire, current traffic density, and, of course, weather.

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To second Lou's comments-I recently got a plane with an ifr certified gps-which opened up a whole new world of ifr flying for me. Two months ago I flew coast to coast (US -4000 miles in 4 days) and filed direct the whole route-and got it the whole route. Since getting this plane with the ifr gps that is the only way I file-and I have have had no trouble getting it. If the airport has a sid/star , I file that to an initial fix-then direct. If no sid/star I just file direct-usually to an initial fix.For example-last week I flew from ktys to kptk. I filed-knoxville 4 departure direct ptk. That is what I got.Leaving ptk to knoxville I filed ptk 8 departure to dexer (a fix)-then direct. I filed this knowing they probably would want me out of the Detroit B airspace on the way down-the fix keeps me out. I could have just filed direct but I already new they would send me to a fix outside the class B anyway.The second time last week I made the trip I filed the same-this time because of the wind conditions they sent me over Canada. Still-they accepted my direct clearance with the only change-ptk 8 departure, runway heading, then radar vectors to a new fix, then direct.Before my plane had an ifr certified gps-I of course had to file airways. Still even then (I always put in the remarks section of the flight plan non ifr loran/handheld gps) I would often get clearances such as fly heading 271 until able Richmond vor (e.g. direct-but legal this way-a heading until able to get a vor). http://mywebpages.comcast.net/geofa/pages/rxp-pilot.jpg

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GeofThat is very different to Europe. No way could you file IFR direct.The wondeful computer at Brussels would throw it out of the system.But there is very little wonderful about our way of doing things with the JAA over here.It is a Beaurocratic mess frankly with very little sense.We have something called route charges flying IFR airways which very roughly speaking works out at about $100 per hour :-(Now the Idiots who regulate this mess are trying to destroy GA in Europe by charging for ALL aircraft VFR or IFR ultralights, gliders light aircraft whether or not they use any services.It looks like the Monsters will get their pathetic way which is very bad for GA in Europe.Oh well they will eventually destroy GA which is probably their Goal anyway.Just the peoples airlines and military will fly the skies of Europe.Peter

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Yeah, one of my instructors looked it up and found out that it is now possible to file direct GPS routes in IFR as long as you remain in radar contact.----------------------------------------------------------------John S. MorganReal World: KGEG, UND Aerospace Spokane Satillite, Private 130+ hrs.Virtual: MSFS 2004"There is a feeling about an airport that no other piece of ground can have. No matter what the name of the country on whose land it lies, an airport is a place you can see and touch that leads to a reality that can only be thought and felt." - The Bridge Across Forever: A Love Story by Richard Bach

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To plan your flight I would recommend getting hold of FSBuild2 from www.fsbuild.com

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