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Constantine

descent preparations and also Light Configs on Take-Off

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hi Guys  just a general question on descent preparations with thr b747-400 I usually set my Vref using predicted Fuel at destination & ZFW  but can you tell me what other calculations your making during flight and prior to descent.?

Also, I enter my MDA/DH in Baro for my Precision or non precision approaches but are you using the Radio area on he EFIS fo anything?

Could I also clarify lights on take-off are only Inb/Outbd Landing lights, Strobes, Nav Lights, Wing Lights Logo (if req) all other lights ie rwy turnoff & Taxi are off

sorry for so many questions really appreciate your guidance !

 

Best Wishes

  Richard

 

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Hi Richard,

 

When you ask about calculations -- what do you have in mind? One would generally want to check the landing performance/autobrake selection, which is not so much a calculation as checking against a table. You might also want to calculate your fuel remaining over destination so that you know how much holding time you have available before you have to divert or commit to your destination. It may also be useful to calculate the headwind/tailwind/crosswind component for the runway you are landing on if it is significant (i.e. near limits).

 

Baro minima are used for CAT I ILS and non-precision approaches. Radio minima would be used for CAT II or III ILS approaches where published on the charts.

 

Light usage depends largely on individual airline SOPs (especially during daylight) but typically one would turn on landing lights and strobes when entering the runway. Nav lights only required at night and some operators leave them off during the day to save the bulbs. Logo lights generally on at night up below FL100 but again this will vary.

 

Turnoff lights as required to see. Wing lights generally only used when the wing surface needs inspecting (i.e. to check the wings for ice at night and during de-icing etc).

 

Not all B747s are equipped with taxi lights -- those that don't have them generally use the outboard landing lights for taxi and turn the inboards on when entering the runway. Otherwise just turn the taxi light off at a convenient moment once airborne and at a safe height.

 

The beacon will also be on as this is generally switched on just prior to pushback/engine start and not turned off again until after the engines are shut down on arrival.

 

Hope that helps!

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That's fantastic thank you for the detailed explanations, I really wanted to add more realism than just doing the standard VREF Transitions FMC checks prior to descent, i'll have to search for the tables etc to calculate fuel remaining & other contingencies,  I asked about the EFIS as I wondered where the Pilot places MSL when taking off sorry i'm new to this, again thank you also for the info on appropriate lights at each stage.

 

Many thanks greatly appreciated

      Richard

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No problem!

 

Fuel/endurance remaining is simply a question of working out the fuel expected at destination (the FMC will give you a decent figure if you have programmed it with a representative route/vertical profile), subtracting your final reserve fuel (30 mins -- about 4.8 tonnes in the 747-400) and your planned fuel to get to your alternate (from your flight plan) and then working out how much extra you have.

 

So if, for instance, you are expecting to arrive at LHR with 11.5 tonnes -- take away 4.8 for the final reserve and, say, 4 for the diversion -- leaves you with 2.7 tonnes over and above those requirements, which gives you a shade over 15 minutes of holding time before you have to divert.

 

Landing distance required/autobrake stopping distances can be found in the QRH if you can find a copy (or some airlines print them on the checklist for quick reference).

 

Prior to departure it is common (but not universal) practice to bug the 3-engine acceleration altitude using the baro minimums selector, though some prefer to bug the departure airfield elevation instead.

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Thank you once again, i'll set about making this a part of all flights I now perform the FMC gives a figure for the predicted landing fuel at destination which I can calculate a final reserve diversion etc, from, the reason I asked about msl was when I hear pilots saying they will use a particular msl on the climb for instance 3000 over London just wondered how they arrived at that figure and if they just made a mental note of that or actually fed it into the EFIS MCP or FMC  anyway thank you for again taking time out to give me such great simplified information

 

Many Thanks

  Richard

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