Questions tagged [radio-communications]

Radio is the primary way that pilots communicate with air traffic control and with other aircraft.

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What's the meaning of this Slider's question?

In Top Gun (1986), enemy flighters shot down flighter name Hollywood so Iceman and Slider trying to take them down: ICE: I'm going after them. I'm bringing it around to the left. SLIDER: We got four ...
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16 votes
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Why doesn’t ACARS just use HF if it has better range than VHF?

Why does ACARS default to VHF if HF has a better range? For example, when requesting ATIS from an airport, it will first try VHF, and if that fails, it will try HF. And if all hope seems lost, it ...
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Is there a designated air-to-air HF frequency in the USA?

Suppose I'm flying somewhere over the middle of the United States, happily telling stories exchanging important flight-related information with another aircraft on 122.75, the designated VHF air-to-...
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Responding to another aircraft without knowing their radio call sign

PPL student here. I recently had someone ask over the radio if there was any traffic in the pattern (uncontrolled class G airport). I could make out everything that pilot said except for his radio ...
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Why is communication between ATC and airliners not also written?

Reading this question: How often does a pilot ask ATC for a repeat? Most modern airliners' cockpits have plenty of digital displays. Why is communication between ATC and pilots not also typed/...
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How often does a pilot ask ATC for a repeat?

How often does it actually happen? Also, is it fine to ask them to slow down if it’s hard to understand, for example, due to a heavy accent?
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4 votes
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How to find ATC recordings for a May 8th general aviation crash?

Unfortunately this Sunday I had a friend and her husband who crashed and didn't make it. Would it be ridiculous to ask if anybody perhaps would know where to look for potential ATC recordings? I have ...
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When told "call sign only" in a frequency change, how to transmit it?

For example: London Control says: BAW211 contact London Approach 118.1, call sign only. What will the pilot say to approach on 118.1? London Approach, BAW211. Or just: BAW211.
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Is "Conflicting Traffic" any better than "All Traffic?"

CTAF guidelines make clear that "all traffic in area please advise," is a bad idea and great way to get CTAF blocked for everybody. Makes sense, cool. I've seen in videos people using "...
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3 votes
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Does the pilot flying always listen to radio communications?

When there is a pilot flying (PF) and a pilot monitoring (PM), does the PF always listen to flight deck radio communications? I would think Yes under normal conditions, but optionally No during ...
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Untowered communication when abeam the airport

Let's say I have the following diagram So, there's runway 28, and people take off straight out to the west towards the ocean. The runway is untowered and its right traffic for runway 28. When I'm at ...
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Did military aircraft in the sixties commonly lack VHF radios?

Investigating the XB-70 cockpit equipment, I notice that it only had (two) UHF radios, of the AN/ARC-50 model, for the 225–399.95 MHz band. No VHF radio that could be used to talk to civilian ATC or ...
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CAP 413: Callsign-first replies in UK RT procedure?

Taking a UK Flight Radio Telephony Operator Licence course and have fallen into a rabbithole. From CAP 413 edition 23 (the CAA's Radiotelephony Manual): 2.48 The placement of the callsigns of both ...
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What is the difference between CTAF and the Tower frequency? Why does the Chart Supplement list the same frequency twice?

At many part-time towered airports the Chart Supplement will have a listing along these lines: COMMUNICATIONS: CTAF 119.2, TOWER 119.2 (1400–0500Z‡) The CTAF is the same frequency as the Tower. What ...
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Pilot communication with ATC partially unreadable

Can anybody decipher this pilot's landing request due to moderate turbulence (some unreadable words...). Thanks ! https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/03kDM9-xQ7Oyz3kUaeRJj6M5Q#AUDIO-2021-12-03-07-51-...
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How to use/be an airborne relay

There are some cases where a pilot may not be able to reach ATC directly due to lack of power or being below the radio horizon: On a handheld backup radio After a forced landing Over open water In ...
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Is there a FAR reference for the IFR required reports listed in the AIM 5-3-3?

Section 5-3-3 of the AIM lists "Additional Reports" that "should" be made on an IFR flight. There are 9 of them in a radar environment and 2 more in non-radar. The only reference ...
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15 votes
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How do I request a frequency change to listen to ATIS?

If I only have one radio, and I'm using VFR Flight Following, what do I tell ATC when I want to pick up ATIS for the landing airport before I'm told to contact the tower?
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Did the last US plane to leave Afghanistan have support from the control tower?

CNN's says says that The last US military planes have left Afghanistan, Gen. Frank McKenzie, the commander of US Central Command, announced Monday at the Pentagon. The US departure marks the end of a ...
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Can the guard frequency be used by non-aircraft / general public?

I am part of an organisation which regularly flies high-powered rockets, and thus files a TFR when we do so prohibiting aircraft from the area where we launch these rockets up to 10,000 ft. This TFR ...
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Approaching a towered airport for landing but no specific pattern entry direction from atc

Here’s the scenario that happened to me - Flying into a busy class D, I contacted tower with the usual “XYZ tower, Warrior 12345 12 to the west at 2,500 full stop with Oscar” They respond “Warrior ...
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4 votes
1 answer
365 views

What is the procedure to change an airport's published CTAF?

Similar to the problem experienced by the poster at Why do so many airports have the same CTAF frequency?, I have noticed that my CTAF is crowded. Not with local pilots, but with operations as much as ...
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Do the soaring and/or ballooning communities in the US recommend 123.5 as the preferred frequency for air-to-air and air-to-ground use?

Does the soaring community (e.g. the Soaring Society of America) or the ballooning community in the US recommend 123.5 as the preferred frequency for air-to-air and air-to-ground use by glider pilots ...
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Does the FAA or FCC recommend 123.5 as the preferred frequency for air-to-air and air-to-ground use by glider pilots or balloon pilots?

Does the FAA or FCC recommend 123.5 as the preferred frequency for air-to-air and air-to-ground use by glider pilots or balloon pilots speaking to other glider or balloon pilots or ground support crew,...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why did the Soviets not make radio contact with Korean 007?

I was reading recently about the shootdown of Korean 007 and it is clear that it was very tense times between the American and Soviet governments. The one point which struck me as weird throught the ...
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Does ATC hear the same poor audio I hear on LiveATC?

When listening to air traffic control (ATC) communications on something like LiveATC there is a lot of feedback/static that often makes it difficult to hear. Do controllers hear the same feedback and ...
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1 answer
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How to interpret ATIS ground communication

Let's say I have the following ground communication from ATIS: ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Why (and when) did people start meowing on guard frequency?

meow Some love it, some hate it, but we've all heard it - that's right, pilots meowing on guard frequency (121.5). When did it start? Does (or did) it represent something? Does ATC ever do it?
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10 votes
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Why do so many airports have the same CTAF frequency?

In the United States, many non-towered airports have CTAF frequencies (often shared with UNICOM as well) that tend to overlap with various other airports within a 50-100 nm radius, at least in more ...
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At what altitude do pilots usually switch to departure?

I contribute to an open-source ATC sim, and I'm looking to advance one of our current features. I know this is widely variable, but is there a typical example, either in distance from the airport, or ...
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What is the exact meaning of "manoeuvring" when said by ATC in reference to traffic?

In the UK, when receiving a basic service, sometimes the ATC unit passes traffic information. They may say it like this: “Traffic to your three o'clock, similar level, C172 manoeuvring.” What ...
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Why didn’t AFR4590 use heavy in its call sign?

https://aviation-safety.net/investigation/cvr/transcripts/cvr_af4590.php shows that AFR4590 didn’t use heavy in its call sign even though Concorde had a MTOW greater than 300,000 lbs. Unlike BAW, AFR ...
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-1 votes
2 answers
593 views

What are the proper radio call-outs on uncontrolled airfields?

I know that there are many non-commercial runways that do not have an active Air Traffic Controller on-duty, and that many small aircraft use these runways for takeoff and landing, but I never ...
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8 votes
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How are range and frequency related in HF communications? [closed]

How does the range of HF communications differ with frequency used? Is it less frequency more range, or more frequency less range?
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1 answer
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Portable radio for cockpit communication [closed]

I am a private pilot based at Van Nuys airport in Los Angeles. Recently due to traffic congestion we have to hold short for extended periods of time, 20-25 minutes. I thought to get a portable radio ...
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1 answer
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How do you figure out which frequency to contact approach on for a class bravo transition?

I'm about 20 hours into my PPL, so maybe I just haven't gotten to this part yet. Suppose I'm flying KFCM to KRNH and I want to request clearance across the bravo. How do I figure out which approach ...
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7 votes
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Question about congestion of the 1090MHz frequency

I'm no expert so there's likely to be a lot of mistakes in this post. ADS-B - Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast, (out) transmits (in) receives position data from/to other aircraft and to ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Where can I find canonical examples of radio communications at non-towered airports?

I'm trying to find any canonical examples of radio communication patterns at non-towered airports. The FAR/AIM has very little in terms of sample announcements, etc. The AC-90-66B (https://www.faa.gov/...
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6 votes
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Is the EASA RT License valid internationally?

I am planning to get a PPL license in Czech. As part of the PPL license I should get a RT License (in English, not Czech). Is that license is international? I mean, if I want to rent an Airplane in ...
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0 votes
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Volume differences between intercom and outside communications [duplicate]

While flying I can hear my instructor in my headset talking no problem, but when they (and me) are speaking with ground/tower the volume in my headset is much lower. Is there anyway to increase the ...
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13 votes
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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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6 votes
2 answers
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When must a pilot report Negative Contact?

Which regulation or AIM section specifically states when a pilot is required to report negative contact? It appears that different airports in the US have slightly different expectations. My ...
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2 votes
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Do aircraft carry commercial VHF radios?

Years ago, I was working in the bush and we used portable radios on something like 154MHz. When it came time for pickup, we were able to talk to the helicopter pilot on that frequency. Since it's ...
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33 votes
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What kind of assistance can another aircraft provide to an incapacitated pilot?

A recent incident unfolded as follows: An aircraft overflew the planned destination and did not respond to radio calls on any frequency. ATC decided the pilot might be incapacitated and asked another ...
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8 votes
3 answers
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Why are lower VHF frequencies used for towers?

So, why are usually lower VHF frequencies (around 118MHz to roughly 120MHz) used for towers and higher frequencies (around 130MHz to 136.975MHz) for ACC? What is the advantage of using lower ...
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Is there a 'common courtesy' distance that should be complied with when initiating contact with ATC for class D airspace?

Some background: I'm a student pilot preparing for an upcoming stage check involving XC diversions and have been trying to visualize different scenarios of what I'd need to do when diverting. One case ...
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34 votes
2 answers
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Should I contact ATC if I don't have a transponder?

The flight school I usually rent from is under the shelf of class C airspace. If you're going out to a practice area, the standard procedure is to contact approach control and get a squawk code, so ...
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4 votes
3 answers
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How does ATC direct aircraft on ground from the parking to the runway?

For medium size airports, ATC will direct aircraft with a single message like this "Taxi to runway 29 via Papa, Sierra". I was wondering if it was the same thing for bigger airports (like ...
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0 votes
3 answers
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How would fighter jets make contact with a previously hijacked aircraft?

For example, a plane is hijacked but civilians regain control, they know how to change the plane's frequency but no procdeures - i.e. dont know guard frequencies. There are fighter jets alongside who ...
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What are the other clearance and instructions that must be read back? [duplicate]

The following items must always be read back: ATC route clearances; clearances and instructions to enter, land on, take off from, hold short of, cross or backtrack on any runway; and runway-in-use, ...
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