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77W RTE2 ETOPS data entry

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RTE2 ETP / ETOPS ALT / ALT PLN:

 

When flying ETOPS sectors, I use RTE2 for my ETOPS alternates, ETP(s) and finally the route from my destination to my alternate. It's a good way to visualize the escape route, if something happens over the sea.

 

Since I started flying the 77W, and updated with the lates SP, I've had problems setting the departure and arrival airports int the RTE2 page 1.

 

I get "invalid" when I try to lift dep/arr ICAO to 1L / 1R. Never had that before.

 

I then tried to "Route Request" and picked my original route into RTE2, and that worked fine.

 

Anyone knows why I can't enter dep / arr ICAO into RTE2 page 1, without requesting a route? Has something been changed in the SP, or did I simply forget something?

 

Thanks,

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I don't recall ever being able to change departure, I'm surprised that you were able to at all.  For ETOPS planning, I presume from next fix to alternate so in effect next fix (for example) is the departure but you don't have to change dep/dest on page 1; alll that I do is promote next fix to top of legs list.  Then route to alternate follows next fix.  Of course if I want to divert before next fix then the manipulation is pretty easy.

 

I get the feeling I don't understand your question.  Are you using RTE COPY to set up RTE 2?  That is what I've always done.

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Thanks mate, I'll test abit more, it's been a while since I did an ETOPS sector in the triple, I might just been confusing myself :)

 

What I thought I used to do in RTE2 was:

 

1. Enter dep/arr airport from my original FP on page 1

2. Enter my first ETOPS alt, CP(s), second ETOPS alt on page 2.

3. Then a disco following my dest and then dest alt route, and finally my alt.

 

All of this, except point 1 is working perfectly. I simply just cannot lift my original dep and arr into page 1. But if I pick up my route via the route request, dep / arr on page 1 populates correctly.

 

It's no biggy, but this way I have to delete all the unnecessary vias and wpts from RTE2 before I can do my points 2 and 3.

 

I wonder how the grown-ups do this... :)

 

Cheers,

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I'd imagine the 'grown ups' use the ALTN Page (& the various functions available there) in conjunction with the FIX Pages to create their ETOPs scenario & diversion contingency.

 

Flight planning tools such as PFPX create ETOPs 'scenarios' based upon ETOPS Flight Rules utilising ETOPS Entry Points EEPs & Equal Time Points ETPs.  These are indicated on the PFPX OFPs by elapsed time from take off & LATLONs.  By doing some simple maths you can quickly figure out the time in ZULU at which you will cross each of these points.

 

They can be entered as a time in ZULU or as a LATLON into the FIX Page.  My preference is as a ZULU time.  This is displayed as a small green 'doughnut' with the associated time on the ND laid over your magenta route of flight & is removed as you pass over it:

 

5quq1gf.jpg

 

The diversion airports (& range rings & radials in relation to them) in relation to these EEPs & ETPs can also be entered into the FIX Pages.

 

Similarly these diversion airports can be manually entered into ALTN Page thus keeping RTE 2 free for it's intended purpose.

 

RTE 2 is probably used exactly for what it's name suggests ... as a copy of the ACT RTE in RTE 1 (perhaps with a different approach loaded or whatever.)  Remember that the ACT RTE in RTE 1 can be copied to RTE 2 during a DIR TO modification using the RTE COPY> option at LSK 5R during the DIR TO process.

 

By attempting to enter ETOPs segments into RTE 2 you are making life more complicated for yourself than it need be.

 

I would imagine that the only time a RTE other than RTE 1 might be entered into RTE 2 is where a decompression escape route is needed to get the aircraft clear of high terrain in the event of an engine failure drift down &/or rapid cabin depressurisation event in proximity to high terrain requiring the crew & passengers to remain on oxygen while the aircraft remains at or above 10000ft to clear the high terrain before diverting to an emergency alternate.

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Excellent info guys, thanks alot! I'll play around with it some more.

I use the fix page 3 and 4 for my ETOPS alternates (or adequates, if they differ from the ETOPS alts), with 463nm range rings, and also ETOPS alts in the ALTN page, so that's taken care of.

I use RTE2 as a copy of RTE1, but usually later in the flight, when I'm finished with the ETOPS segment.

During the ETOPS segment I like to have visualized the route to the ETOPS alternates on the ND in addition to the range rings.

Cheers guys,

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Hi Mo!

 

I agree with Steve that you are over-egging your pudding!

 

Using PFPX, I receive ETOPS entry and exit points, and the ETP. I usually use the ETP coordinates, which are sensitive to the planned wx, to create an additional waypoint in my route so that I am aware of whether to continue or turn back in case of problems.

 

I also agree that the DIVERT NOW function gives a very easy method of diverting to your chosen ALTN if the need arises, and usually plenty of time to massage the route for a suitable STAR/approach. Don't forget that the ALTN list is dynamic and changes as your flight progresses.

 

HTH

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Haha, excellent, you are probably right Richard, I'll do a ROI analysis the next time I'm in the cockpit :)

 

By utilizing the RTE2 as DEP -> ETOPS ALT1 -> ETP/CP -> ETOPS ALT2 -> DISCO -> DEST -> DEST ALT, whenever I go into RTE2 I get nice blue lines with the direct course to these three important points (which I indeed get from PFPX).

 

I'll look into the DIVERT NOW function, to see what really happens in case of a divert.

 

Cheers mate,

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Mo,

 

You also automatically get the blue arrows pointing to the current ALTNs if you have the ND at max range setting. 

 

Cheers, R

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Using PFPX, I receive ETOPS entry and exit points, and the ETP. I usually use the ETP coordinates, which are sensitive to the planned wx, to create an additional waypoint in my route so that I am aware of whether to continue or turn back in case of problems.

 

There is an issue with this method, which is that if you add the ETP co-ordinates to the active route they will be transmitted back to ATC as part of your ADS-C data, and apparently they don't like this as it messes up their systems (not to mention the risk of committing a GNE by entering off-flightplan fixes in to the active route).

 

For this reason, to my understanding the preferred methods are to either enter the ETP co-ordinates in to RTE2, which subsequently displays them in blue behind the active route, or to utilise the FIX page (if your FMC will accept lat/longs and times in the FIX page -- not all will).

 

Further discussion here: http://www.pprune.org/archive/index.php/t-476821.html

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Hi Simon,

 

I have not ever noticed an ETP not being exactly on a route, and therefore do not understand your posit of potentially committing an GNE.

 

I didn't know that with ADS-C a waypoint identifier will be transmitted, only the aircraft position. Quoting G-450 AOM 2B-33-50 ¶1 "When an ADS Waypoint Change event contract is active, position report data is sent when the aircraft reaches the bisector of the angles at a flight plan waypoint. (This corresponds to the VNAV sequence point.)"

 

I do, however, completely accept your RTE2 and FIX solutions.

 

Regards, R

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Hi Richard,

 

I think the issue is not so much the location of the ETP itself, but more that any time you're plugging lat/long co-ordinates in to the FMC you risk making an input error. It's also the principle that it's not good practice to be navigating to an active waypoint that isn't on the ATS flightplan (even if it should be along the planned track).

 

 

Reading a little further in about the ADS-C issue it appears there is an issue with non-ATS waypoints (including abeam points) corrupting ADS-C position reports -- more details in this (different) PPrune discussion: http://www.pprune.org/tech-log/513985-etops-points-fms-flight-plan.html

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DIVERT NOW> in conjunction with the FIX & ALTN Pages are designed to overcome all the complexities being discussed here, after all the 777 family were designed for ETOPs flying.

 

Good Situational Awareness (SA) will mean you will always have a plan when things start to unravel, fancy blue lines on the ND might look nice but they will clutter up the SA & you have to ask yourself - are they really necessary?  If you have entered all of your chosen ETOPS ALTNs into the ALTN Page & you press the ARPT button on your EFIS you will be presented with some pretty blue arrows as Richard has already explained.

 

Plot your ETP LATLON on a FIX Page & the Time in ZULU overhead the same ETP in the same FIX Page - that way if you are going to early or late the green doughnut will move forward or behind the said FIX on the ND - also useful - ETOPS is all about time.

 

As for 'routes' to your ETOPs alternates - well any kind of 'strategic' flying goes down the shitter & everything becomes more 'tactical'.

 

The worst case in a twin is an emergency descent due to a rapid decompression with an single engine failure - this will put you on one engine at 10000ft probably in icing conditions for a long period (with some operators up to 207 mins) away from a suitable airport).  Eyes down on the WX radar in HDG SEL for that one if there are lots of Cbs in the area.

 

The name of the game is to shoot a STRAIGHT LINE directly to the ALTN airport - hence DIVERT NOW> is the option you need - not RTE 2 with a fancy route you made over a cup of ambition earlier.

 

You have just lost one incredibly reliable engine & you are now at 10000ft in bumpy icing conditions into a 50kt HWC with lots of frightened passengers heading to Goose Bay in pitch black pissing rainy icy crappy WX on another incredibly reliable engine which is burning your remaining fuel like billyo!

 

The Thrust Mode is in CON , EAI & WAI are lit up & your mouth is suddenly dry & all of a sudden you have decided to put up the ENG Page on the Lower EICAS & you are watching the P's & T's like the proverbial! - I wonder Why??

 

RTE 2? I don't think so - use a lower level of automation to free up some RAM in your brain.

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DIVERT NOW> in conjunction with the FIX & ALTN Pages are designed to overcome all the complexities being discussed here, after all the 777 family were designed for ETOPs flying.

 

Great post! There's a ton of good knowledge there.

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Plot your ETP LATLON on a FIX Page & the Time in ZULU overhead the same ETP in the same FIX Page - that way if you are going to early or late the green doughnut will move forward or behind the said FIX on the ND - also useful - ETOPS is all about time.

 

I really like this, gonna try it next trip... LOL your description of the diversion to Cold Bay... reminded me of 'The High and The Mighty.'

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Interesting thread didn't know you could enter a time on the same fix page as the ETP will try that on my next flight

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Just to highlight the relationship between plotted LATLONs & plotted ARPTs using the FIX Page & PREDICTED ETAs entered at LSK 6R on the FIX Page(es) I have taken a couple of 'screenies' as I make my may across the Pacific today ...

 

The first picture shows the plotted ETOPS ENTRY point entered into FIX Page 2/4 in relation to KSFO & a 420NM range ring around it (420NM represents 1hrs still air flying time where the aircraft enters the ETOPS area). 

 

The PFPX OFP gave a LATLON for this ETOPS Entry Point (EEP) & an ETA which is taken from the take off time.  By 'summing' the leg times on the PLOG you can enter the time into LSK6L in the same FIX Page & see the relationship between the plotted EEP & the ETA.   As you can see the green 'doughnut' is placed directly over the plotted FIX showing out ETOPS entry point.

 

R48upwq.jpg

 

By that time we should have contacted our dispatcher & confirmed our ETOPS Alternate suitability regarding weather etc.

 

The next picture shows our first ETOPS pair of KSFO & CYVR with the ETP plotted & the associated ETA displayed.  As both airports are within the range of the ND I have drawn a 420NM (1hr) circle around them:

 

CY8NF8m.jpg

 

This picture Shows the ALTN Page.  The DIVERT NOW> prompt is already set up for KSFO so if required a few presses of a button & we are on our way the nearest alternate:

 

hd0fmcm.jpg

 

The flight is progressing well ... we are well into the ETOPs 207 regime & the Alternates are now CYVR & PANC & they have along with the others for the route have been entered into the ALTN Page.  The ARPT Button on the EFIS on my side has been pressed & as you can see small blue arrows now point to these chosen ARPTs.  My personal choice is to not keep these arrows displayed permanently as I like an uncluttered ND (like my small brain!)  The distances are now huge & we are rapidly approaching the point where range rings drawn around ARPTs plotted into FIX Pages become in my own mind more of a hindrance than a help so while I still enter the ARPTs into the FIX Pages I dispense with the actual range rings (A note for the 744 v 2.0 - range rings can only be drawn out to 511NM in any case IRL).

 

B6iqNub.jpg

 

We never touched RTE 2 once.  Hope this makes things clearer.

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Steve,

 

Many thanks for your explanation. Certainly something to chew on.

 

Also your graphic and poetic diversion description was wonderful!

 

Cheers, Richard

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No problems ... always happy to offer an opinion.

 

The only other point I would make here regarding 'tactical' or lower modes of automation versus higher or 'strategic' modes of automation is a caveat regarding the use of HDG SEL whilst in the Polar Latitudes:

 

The primary roll mode for polar operations should be LNAV, which may be used with the heading reference switch in the NORM position.

 

When entering the Polar Region automatic switching to a true north reference occurs at various latitudes dependant on the navigation capability of the aircraft.  It is annunciated by a flashing white box around the word TRU on the ND.

 

A TRUE heading reference can also be selected inside and outside the Polar Region with the manual selection of the Heading Reference Switch from NORM to TRUE.  The ND displays a green box around the word MAG to annunciate a change back to magnetic reference when leaving the Polar region.

 

HDG SEL/HOLD and TRK SEL/HOLD are functional but require they both require the manual selection of the Heading Reference Switch from NORM to TRUE.

 

Deviations from planned route may be accomplished in TRK SEL or HDG SEL (for WX avoidance or due to high terrain).

 

The use of the DIVERT NOW> prompt on the ALTN Page is still extant.

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AFIK the ETPs are based on forecasted conditions taking into account the WX conditions predicted at the time the aircraft is expected overhead said position.

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