Questions tagged [air-traffic-control]

Air Traffic Control (ATC) is a service of ground-based controllers that directs and coordinates aircraft to improve safety and efficiency.

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14
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1answer
3k views

Why do some airports not have ICAO codes?

This is a follow up to my previous question What do numbers signify in airport codes? In that case, I was asking why my local airport (Markham Airport) had a number in its code (CNU8). I later ...
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Where can the airspace boundary coordinates for Fayetteville TRACON be found?

I would like a map depicting the airspace owned by Fayetteville TRACON that includes lat/long coordinates (i.e. not just a cartoon-y outline with no information). Ideally, I'd like to find a site ...
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Why are cockpit alarms still so distracting and unable to be silenced?

I'm watching video RV 10 N783V My 1st Emergency At 8:45 a stall alarm goes off and is a horrible piercing whistle. Why? Surely the pilot has enough distractions without also being deafened while ...
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Could I issue clearances at a private airstrip without being a controller?

Hypothetically, if I owned a private airstrip on my property, with all the necessary permissions to do so, and I only want certain aircraft landing there, would I be allowed to issue takeoff and ...
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How are landing aircraft handled during an emergency runway closure?

A Hypothetical scenario A landing aircraft at a busy airport such as London Gatwick LGW has an issue during landing that requires the immediate closure of the runway. My understanding is that ...
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What is the difference between “affirm” and “acknowledged”?

Recently, I've watched Air Force One and I heard ATC and the pilots say "Acknowledged." instead of "affirm" or "affirmative" as I've learned.. Is it common to say both? ...
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What are pilot position reports?

I do a lot of shortwave radio listening, and I often listen to MWARA air traffic radio transmissions based out of San Francisco for flights crossing the Pacific Ocean. When giving position reports the ...
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Why do commercial flights turn / bank so sharply?

When I take commercial flights, or you see turns in the vapour trails, they turn very sharply. What's the reason for this - wouldn't it be more efficient to turn gradually?
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What happens if a crew complies but does not read back ATC instructions?

For example, a commercial airliner is inbound and is in the traffic pattern; ATC instructs the aircraft to reduce speed to 160 knots, which the airliner does. ATC notice the aircraft has complied but ...
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What is the meaning of “altimeter three-zero-one-one”?

I've been listening to a lot of liveatc.net recently (mostly at CYVR). What does it mean when the ATC give an "altimeter" reading (usually around the 3000 area). Altimeter three-zero-one-one. I'm ...
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What is the “non-apologizing rule”?

I was reading some forum about funny ATC communications and one commentary was GXXXX: Request status of danger areas X1, 2 and 4 <Pause> London info: I don't recognise area number x124 GXXXX: ...
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What is the procedure to follow for “traffic not in sight”?

What would be the proper procedure to follow, when in the pattern or approaching an airport, if ATC gives you the position of an aircraft and you do not have them in sight? Do you just report "not in ...
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What are the lettered and numbered signs next to airport runways and taxiways?

What do these numbers signify? Can pilots see them while landing? Do they matter while taking off? Do Control Tower mention these while guiding planes on runway?
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Will ATC proactively route traffic around bad weather?

When thunderstorms or other severe weather crop up, will the Air Traffic Control in the area proactively route traffic (horizontally or vertically) around the trouble area, or do they leave it up to ...
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How are squawk codes assigned?

How are the 4-digit squawk codes assigned to individual flights? This answer indicates that there should be a "correct" one. How does ATC know what is "correct" and what is "incorrect"?
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Can an airport without an FAA controlled tower have their own tower and controllers?

Can an airport not eligible for an FAA tower and controllers choose to fund their own air traffic control tower? Can that airport require pilots to taxi, approach, land, and take off according to ...
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What is the procedure when being vectored for an approach and ATC allows you to pass through the final approach course?

If you are on a heading, being vectored to intercept final on an instrument approach, and it appears that you will fly through the final approach without being cleared to intercept it, what should you ...
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Can an issued landing clearance be replaced with “continue approach”?

Since the US handles the landing clearance differently, this is limited to Europe (EASA-land). From Eurocontrol: Continue Approach If the runway is obstructed when the aircraft reports ‘final’, but ...
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Where can I find old (historical) FIR map?

I'm doing a research with FIR Ho Chi Minh (formerly named FIR Saigon). I've read a document which said: During the Fall of Saigon, ICAO, in 28th of April 1975, had divided FIR Saigon into 3 AOR: ...
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1answer
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What is “clearance delivery” meant for?

I was recently having a conversation where the term "clearance delivery" popped up, and was talking about his time flying into PHX, but in all of my time flying, I've never heard of the term before! ...
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327 views

Does the “follow” instruction give an aircraft clearance to turn onto a taxiway and/or cross a runway?

Consider this ATC instruction from a ground controller: N123, continue down Alpha, turn right at Kilo, hold short of RWY36. N456, follow N123. Does this instruction mean N456 can turn right ...
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Why might a passenger jet fly at altitudes in a strong headwind when the winds are more favorable at a different altitude?

I was a passenger on an east to west flight recently. During the flight I was playing with Garmin Pilot's new "Flight profile" feature that nicely shows the wind speeds at various altitudes, and I ...
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What exactly are these unusual flight code names that require ATC priority?

(Related to this question) The FAA's ATC Orders section 2-1-4 lists a number of different flight types that should get priority handling when possible. The obvious candidates are all mentioned: ...
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Can I get official recordings of ATC audio?

Is there a procedure in place to request a copy of the audio recording of a specific ATC position over a specific time interval? How is the request made? What are the limitations of such a request? ...
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How do aircraft carriers treat foreign Flight Information Regions?

Aircraft carriers have the right to be anywhere as long as they stick to international waters. But as soon as a plane leaves the deck, that's somebody's FIR. Granted they can fly low, or even know ...
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Is “Tally-Ho” used in ATC radio communication, specifically in the UK?

This question Are "Tally-ho" and "no joy" acceptable ATC terms for civil operations? concerns the use of the phrase "Tally Ho" to mean "target in sight" in civilian air-traffic-...
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Can an air traffic controller refuse to give service to an aircraft based on moral grounds?

Today I learned about a Twitter account that tweets arrivals and departures to/from Geneva, of aircraft used by dictators. I was wondering if an individual air traffic controller could refuse to give ...
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Do pilots have to stop at the hold position of the takeoff runway?

Or in other words, is the takeoff clearance ever given (implicitly or explicitly) before the aircraft reaches the hold position, so that the pilot can keep rolling through the hold line and to the ...
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Why is it more difficult for ATC to manage a larger airliner?

After playing a few ATC simulation games, and reading at a few places (don't remember where), I am certain that it is more difficult to manage a larger airliner for the ATC. Suppose that one A320 and ...
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In the US, is it legal to cover up some of the required gyro instruments during flight under IFR in actual IMC?

In the US, is it legal to cover up some of the required gyro instruments during flight under IFR in actual IMC? The purpose being for "partial panel" practice.
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What is the purpose of wide area multilateration?

From what I understand the wide area multilateration (WAM) technique is similar to Loran-C but reversed: The aircraft ADS-B transponder broadcasts a signal received by several ground stations. The ...
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What does it mean when ATC says “altitude indicates”?

I've noticed that ATC sometimes calls out traffic (a traffic advisory?) to aircraft using the "altitude indicates" phraseology, and sometimes a specific altitude is given without the phrase "altitude ...
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I've been denied VFR clearance through C airspace, what should I do?

If I'm flying along in my C-152 and I am trying to go in a straight line through the "center" of C airspace (to land at a regional airport under the airspace), but the controller tells me to remain ...
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What happens when a takeoff clearance is cancelled by the ATC?

Let's say an commercial passenger jet is accelerating down the runway, taking off. The ATC receives some signal that he/she should cancel all takeoff clearances. Exactly what happens in the control ...
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Is “Pull up and be ready” standard phraseology?

I was next in line (making IFR departure) just after a Bonanza departed, with about a dozen aircraft behind me. Tower called my number and said "pull up and be ready". I'm accustomed to "line up and ...
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What standard of English are Air Traffic Controllers held to?

While I'm sure it varies by territory, and that airports around more cosmopolitan areas have controllers better versed in English, I was wondering how well controllers have to know English. I imagine ...
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What training is required to become an air traffic controller?

I'm curious as to what it takes to be an Air Traffic Controller. I sat in a preliminary online test after I got accepted in, but it was mindbogglingly difficult. One of the questions I had to do was ...
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How do I tell ATC that I don't have a transponder?

If my plane doesn't have a transponder and ATC tells me to squawk some transponder code, how should I respond? Is it just as simple as "I don't have a transponder"? This is for the United States and ...
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How is a conflict between aircraft with TCAS I and II resolved?

Let's say there are two aircraft in a risk of collision, one of them is equipped with Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) I so it will get only a Traffic Advisory (TA), however the second one is ...
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What does “square the base” mean?

I was flying the other day and heard tower say to another aircraft, "square the base". What does it mean, and when might a controller say this?
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Can tower clear aircraft for take off with traffic still on the runway?

How much separation is required after an aircraft lands before ATC can clear another aircraft to take off from the same runway? On longer runways are small aircraft allowed to commence take off roll ...
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What are the pilot responsibilities for “maintain visual separation” clearances?

ATC will sometimes give pilots the instruction to maintain visual separation from nearby traffic. I have a couple questions about this: There is a related ...
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What ATC entities does a commercial airliner communicate with?

As a private pilot, I am familiar with tower, ground, approach and departure control, but I am aware that there are other entities like clearance, pushback and center. If I were flying a commercial ...
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Where can I find real-time flight tracking with the least amount of delay?

I am an aviation fan, relatively new to the industry. While I thoroughly enjoy plane spotting at my local KORD airport, at times I tune to LiveATC and Flightaware to get my fix. Unfortunately, my ...
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How do I clear an aircraft to exit a hold?

I'm learning ATC and one question is worrying me.. How do I tell a pilot to exit a hold and continue inbound... Eg: pilot has entered hold and done one orbit. and started the second, and I want the ...
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Is “secondary radar” a misnomer?

Radar is based on the principle of transmitting radio waves and measuring the length of time-of-flight, direction, and frequency shift of the returning reflections or echoes. In aviation, we call ...
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Do lighter-than-air aircraft communicate with ATC?

Do lighter-than-air aircraft communicate with ATC? If not, how do they avoid running into other aircraft?
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On a chart, how can I find the frequency for flight following?

Is there a map I can refer to in order to pick up the correct frequency for VFR flight following while enroute? I know I can request a frequency from ATC as I depart, but what if I want to fly around ...
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1answer
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When do you contact ATC when departing from a non-towered airport into class C controlled airspace?

When you're departing from an airport within controlled airspace, when should you contact ATC? This is when the airport you were departing from is non-towered. Scenario: I am departing a non-towered ...
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When cleared for an approach and not on vectors, is a depicted course reversal always required?

At least where I fly, most instrument approaches now use a Hold In Lieu of Procedure Turn (HILO). The "full procedure" now consists of a turn in the hold before proceeding inbound. In the example ...

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