I am stuyding FAA's Coded Instrument Flight Procedures (CIFP) file which uses ARINC 424 digital format to code its data. I noticed that only mandatory crossing altitudes and speeds are included in the coding of the Arrival procedures (STARs), whereas expected crossing altitudes and expected speeds are omitted.

Take for example JFK's CAMRN arrival procedure. There are two assigned expected altitudes and one expected speed: at HOGGS (FL180) and at CAMRN (11000, 250K). The corresponding coded procedure in the CIFP file is:

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Is there any reason that these values are omitted? Is there any other source where I can find these missing values? One would think that the expected crossing altitudes and speed are an important part of a procedure and thus I find it difficult to understand why they are not included in the CIFP file.

If I would like to study an arrival procedure's vertical profile but there aren't any assigned crossing altitudes, what is the most appropriate way for estimating actual, or, at least, realistic crossing altitudes (e.g. for design purposes)?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ In STAR procedures, the crossing altitude and speeds are only specified when necessary for obstacle clearance and airspace purposes. It's up to the pilot to choose and calculate the optimal descent and speed for the approach as long as the minimum altitudes and maximum speeds are adhered to. $\endgroup$ – miceagol Nov 14 '19 at 9:57

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