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What would happen if a student busts a corner, exceeds the floor of Bravo airspace by 500 feet then descends after one minute?

The pilot is on the frequency of a Golf airport heading towards a Delta controlled airspace, both within the Bravo 30 nm veil.

Does the Bravo tower have a way of knowing the aircraft involved?

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  • $\begingroup$ If they are squawking VFR they probably won't know who it was. Either way I'd file an ASRS report detailing the incident. If they do know who it is, the flight instructor will probably get a talking to, and to a lesser extent, the student pilot. $\endgroup$ – Ron Beyer Jul 21 '16 at 4:54
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Just to make it perfectly clear:

If you accidentally enter a controlled airspace without clearance, as soon as you realise what has happened, the first thing you do is contact the responsible ATC unit! Period.

Panicking, initiating a rapid descend to leave the airspace or simply pretending it didn't happen is extremely bad airmanship, and will surely get you in trouble if you get caught. On the other hand, admitting you made an honest mistake and asking ATC what the best solution is might still get you in trouble in some countries, but it is definitely the safest solution for everyone.

Depending on the exact details of the airspace infringement, it may be extremely dangerous if you try to solve the problem on your own. By suddenly descending to leave the airspace, you risk colliding with traffic below you. If the airspace in question is of a military kind, turning a blind eye to your mistake and maintaining radio silence will potentially result in a visit from some aircraft with a lot more weapons than yours.

Anyone can get lost and make mistakes. If you do, ATC is there to help you - not to punish you for an honest mistake. Make use of that help!

As for procedures about which forms need to be filed after an incident like this, I will leave it to someone with knowledge about FAA specific procedures to answer.

You can read more about Airspace Infringements at SKYbrary.

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Well, it depends. Controlled traffic around these satellite airports would be on the Class Bravo's approach frequency. If you were in that category and contacted approach and they had given you flight following or assigned a transponder code to you, then yes, they would know it was you and be able to track your aircraft down, if they were so inclined to investigate. Also if you were in contact with the tower at the class D airport and they had previously located you, then it's possible you could be notified about that.

Yes, theoretically you could get in trouble for that.

Now uncontrolled traffic squaking VFR would be more difficult to identify. ATC may note the radar return which violated the controlled airspace and track it to its destination, but further pursuit would probably be wasted effort.

If you did this, just make a mental note of what happened, what caused it, and vow not to go down that path again. Most likely nothing will come out of this. Save for major, intentional tresspass of these types of controlled airspace or violations which result in an incident or accident, the authorities will just note that it occurred and won't wast the time or effort on further investigation.

TFRs are another story altogether. Violate those and you can expect an airborne visit from a couple of nice young men flying F-16s who will have instructions to follow them and land at a nearby airport. Police will most Likely arrest you there. Expect to spend the day chatting with a couple of nice people from Homeland Security before being released and receive a letter from the FAA informing you that they are revoking your pilot's license.

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  • $\begingroup$ I didn't downvote, but "receive a letter from the FAA informing you that they are revoking your pilot's license" is not at all accurate. The FAA very very rarely takes so much action as to revoke your license in almost any circumstance. Usually what happens is a temporary suspension. If you bust a TFR you are not automatically escorted, usually the controlling facility will contact you and ask for your information, after which an investigation will be launched. The only time you get a fighter escort is if you were to ignore or not comply with any instructions. $\endgroup$ – Ron Beyer Jul 21 '16 at 13:36

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