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Questions tagged [visual-approaches]

Instances where an aircraft is coming in to land and the pilot is able to see landmarks and the runway in order to navigate the landing.

6
votes
3answers
214 views

How useful is skyscrapers and high buildings lighting to get a visual reference for pilots by night? (not obstruction lights, just general lights)

I would like to know how useful is skyscrapers and high buildings lighting to get a visual reference for helicopter and small planes pilots by night in cities like New York. This is different from ...
3
votes
3answers
244 views

Is it normal to instruct an aircraft to squawk VFR if it goes around on an IFR visual approach? [closed]

A pilot is flying IFR on a visual approach to a towered airport. He elects to go around due to gusting winds and notifies the tower. The tower then asks his intentions. He replies that he would still ...
2
votes
1answer
198 views

Is altitude and heading your discretion when you are cleared visual approach?

If I'm north of KSAN heading east and the controller clears me for the visual approach for runway 27, can I descend and turn the plane at my discretion so that I can get ready for landing? Also, ...
0
votes
1answer
75 views

How high are you when you are three miles away from the threshold of the landing RWY and get 3 white and 1 red on PAPI?

Let's say you were shooting a visual approach and you were precisely on a three mile final. You gave a glance at the PAPI, you find it giving three white and one red. How high you are from the 3 ...
7
votes
2answers
229 views

While flying having trouble estimating how far I am from Airport

When approaching an uncontrolled airport especially, standard procedure demands to make the first call 10 miles out announcing my location, entry procedure, etc. and then more calls at 5 miles, 2 ...
31
votes
5answers
10k views

Why are visual approaches (in the US) preferred by US pilots, but not European pilots?

I listen to ATC a lot and often hear airliners cleared for visual approaches in the USA. Interestingly, if it's European airliner pilots they deny the visual approach and request ILS even if they are ...
13
votes
1answer
929 views

Does being cleared for a visual approach supersede speed instructions from ATC? (FAA)

Does being issued a visual approach clearance supersede speed instructions from ATC under FAA rules? Here's an example. Let's assume an aircraft is being vectored for landing at a large class B ...
6
votes
1answer
455 views

Why are the stabilised approach criteria different for an instrument approach and a visual approach?

My question mainly pertains to the simple altitude difference. Why is the stabilised call given at 1000ft for an instrument approach and 500ft for a visual approach?
12
votes
1answer
640 views

How is a meatball calibrated and checked?

The visual glide slope for aircraft landing on a carrier is a stabilized indicator, the "meatball": Source. The slope is about 4° relatively to the horizontal plane, and stabilized because the ...
13
votes
2answers
952 views

Who is responsible for airspace separation when an IFR flight is cleared for a visual approach?

In areas tightly packed with airports (FXE, PHF, and countless others) it is possible to enter the airspace other than that of your destination airport. Some are less than 5 miles apart. In ...
4
votes
1answer
265 views

Is there a published airspeed and TPA for Class B approach at San Diego International?

I live in San Diego almost directly underneath the downwind leg of the normal approach (from the north) to Lindbergh Field (KSAN). The Class B airspace for the entire downwind and base leg areas is ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

How do pilots estimate glideslope visually without PAPIs?

If my (enthusiast-level) understanding is correct, on instrument approach there are specific glideslope paths a plane is expected to follow. On ILS this is self-evident, but (again, if I read approach ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

What makes a visual approach quicker than an ILS approach?

In the question What's the preferred approach for a passenger jet? it is mentioned that pilots prefer Visual Approaches over ILS Approaches, as they are a lot quicker. Why would a visual approach ...
9
votes
2answers
355 views

How do you choose a feature to line up on when approaching to land?

I've been taught that when I'm on final approach to land, I should pick a feature or landmark that's some distance along the extended centre-line, so that when I'm close enough to the ground that I ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the preferred approach for a passenger jet?

I seemingly can't find an answer to this quite obvious question: What's the preferred approach procedure for a passenger jet at a modern airport fully equipped for precision ILS (both aircraft and ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Can a pilot use ILS when cleared for a visual approach?

When cleared for a visual approach, do airline pilots still use the localiser/glideslope or GPS or even the autopilot, or is it strictly a "visual" approach?
8
votes
3answers
6k views

How do you determine the proper rate of descent for landing?

I'm trying to use a simulator to learn to land properly. One part that I'm finding really tricky is picking a proper rate of descent. I know I'm supposed to do my best to keep it so I have two red ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

How to get the correct angle when doing a visual appoach before landing?

Before landing, without ILS, how can you get the correct vertical angle and know when you're too high or too low? I think there are some red and white directionnal lights next to the runway that can ...
13
votes
2answers
11k views

What is a stabilized approach?

Most (all?) airlines require the use of a stabilized approach, and it is constantly referred to as a safer way to land an airplane. What are the criteria for an approach to be considered stabilized?...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the FMS Bridge Visual 28R approach at SFO?

I've read that SFO has a specialized FMS Bridge Visual approach to 28R that is not published but instead is custom tailored for specific operators. What exactly is this approach and how does it work? ...