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28 votes
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What is the night effect?

In short The night effect is actually a mirage. Listening to radio communications originating from below the radio horizon is like looking at a looming: Looming optical illusion, source: SKYbrary ...
mins's user avatar
  • 74.7k
26 votes
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Do transoceanic airliners monitor marine VHF emergency frequencies?

156.8 MHz Crews don't listen to channel 16 of the marine band. Channel 16 is used by marine with FM, while a VHF aviation receiver demodulates only AM, and the upper limit of the VHF band for ...
mins's user avatar
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22 votes
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Can normal PC headsets replace 'aviation' headsets?

Can you physically make it work? Yes. But you have to have an adaptor that fixes several compatibility issues. Headphone impedance Impedance is usually referred to in high and low range. Military ...
TomMcW's user avatar
  • 28.6k
20 votes

Does ATC hear the same poor audio I hear on LiveATC?

The real quality is almost always better, and I'll give a simplified explanation for why. LiveATC works by an individual volunteering to host a receiver on their house. Aircraft use VHF radio (except ...
Ben's user avatar
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20 votes
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Do pilots ever talk directly to each other over radio?

Informally, pilots talk to each other quite often, even on frequencies they're not supposed to (link is to a YouTube video of Kennedy Steve inviting pilots to heap verbal abuse on a pilot who hot-mic'...
William Walker III's user avatar
17 votes
Accepted

Why is radio communication still used?

Cellular communication has multiple issues: When a plane is up more than a few thousand feet, a cell phone would see, and try to talk to, multiple cell towers at once. At best, this is inefficient ...
abelenky's user avatar
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17 votes
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How does the emergency frequency work?

You're out of range of you airfield radio operator on the frequency they are tuned, but you almost certainly not out of range of all radio operators. In the UK, there are military units, LARS, area ...
Jamiec's user avatar
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17 votes

What format is the output from a GA aircraft microphone? WAV? MP3? or some other format

Analog............................
Pilothead's user avatar
  • 20.7k
14 votes
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Is there a solution to radio interference?

Firstly, it is worth noting that the blocked radio transmission is only one point on a very long list of factors that caused the horrible accident on Tenerife. There is enough redundancy in aviation ...
60levelchange's user avatar
14 votes

How unusual were MH370's final ATC exchanges?

I have not heard the actual audio in context; I've only read the transcripts. However, from the transcripts, I see the timing between some of their calls as a bit confusing and unusual. ...
abelenky's user avatar
  • 30.7k
11 votes

What radio frequency bands are associated with the long wire antennas, why do some aircraft have them and others don't?

Depending on the aircraft you could be looking at one of a few things. (source) On some older aircraft it may be the communications antenna for older style radios (pre UHF/VHF days). Most of these ...
Dave's user avatar
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11 votes
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What's the meaning of underlined frequency in sectional chart nav aid box?

Navigation receivers can be used as a fall back for regular VHF/HF radio transceivers Before data links, there were essentially two types of radio receivers in the flight deck, and this is still the ...
mins's user avatar
  • 74.7k
10 votes

Why is radio communication still used?

As mentioned in comments radiocommunication includes all forms of radio links, hence includes cellular networks. Cell size A cellular network covering any land is not realistic, not mentioning water ...
mins's user avatar
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9 votes
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Is there an ATC radio backup?

There is always a backup radio system as well as a several backup systems like for example a backup CWP (controller worker position) in case the primary fails. PANS-ATM (ICAO doc 4444) in chapter <...
Stelios Adamantidis's user avatar
9 votes

Is there an ATC radio backup?

If the power fails, the tower will automatically switch to backup power generated by local diesel generators. If that fails, there are backup handheld radios. If those fail, the tower has a battery ...
60levelchange's user avatar
9 votes

How many antennae are there on a typical small aircraft, and how are they connected to the avionics?

The VOR/Localizer/Glide Slope antenna is usually V-shaped and points backwards on the vertical stabilizer of the plane. On some aircraft, they point forward. They look like old-fashioned wire clothes ...
JScarry's user avatar
  • 7,464
9 votes

Can I listen to control tower frequencies on a ham radio legally

In North America, just buy an air-band radio and listen to Raleigh-Durham tower all you like, or if your ham unit receives the aviation VHF frequencies, do that. Or find it on LiveATC.net It's only ...
John K's user avatar
  • 132k
8 votes
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How to check if (small) aircraft's radio is working properly?

Here are some things you can do, there are probably more. I'm assuming you're mainly interested in checking COM, not NAV. Controlled airport Check if you can hear the ATIS, Ground or Tower; if you ...
Pondlife's user avatar
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8 votes
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How feasible digital radio communications would be?

Digital is not always better. Digital modes have been created for amateur radio use; the amateur radio VHF 2m band (144–148 MHz) is very similar to the VHF aircraft band (108–137 MHz). I ...
rclocher3's user avatar
  • 1,409
8 votes

What can cause my radio to transmit nothing but a terrible noise?

Being able to talk inside the airplane is not related to the radios function, the intercom (generally part of the audio panel these days) is what allows cross talk between headsets. It sounds like you ...
Dave's user avatar
  • 101k
8 votes
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Does ATC hear the same poor audio I hear on LiveATC?

Short version: Poor quality audio on LiveATC is mostly due to obstructions attenuating the signal. Controllers and pilots usually don't have much trouble hearing each other unless there are multiple ...
reirab's user avatar
  • 19.5k
8 votes

How does the emergency frequency work?

Besides pretty much every ATC ground station, on airliners, with 2 Comm radios, normally Comm 1 is used for all ATC 2-way communications, and Comm 2 for ATIS, talking to Company ops, possibly air-to-...
John K's user avatar
  • 132k
7 votes
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What are the ways to perform air traffic control on long distance flights?

Direct link vs satellite There are three major ways of sending control messages to an aircraft: Direct radio link [when] in line of sight, satellite, ground stations, e.g., tracon. The way the ...
mins's user avatar
  • 74.7k
7 votes
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How strong would a servo motor need to be to power the control surfaces of a fixed wing ultralight aircraft?

First I'd like to say you are thinking outside the box, not a bad thing... However for an ultralight aircraft this is impractical. The first problem you have is that most ultralight aircraft don't ...
Ron Beyer's user avatar
  • 36.2k
7 votes

Do left and right mic buttons control both headset microphones?

This is the expected behaviour. The other pilot might make some sound or even talk to someone else. You don't want any noise interfering with your own voice during transmission. Two microphones ...
bogl's user avatar
  • 10.8k
7 votes
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Can ADS-B used for voice communications?

Why dont we ditch the old radio system full of parasties and use ADS-B instead for voice communications instead? Well, why don't we use televisions for washing dishes? Because televisions don't wash ...
Tanner Swett's user avatar
  • 5,781
7 votes
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Question about congestion of the 1090MHz frequency

Additionally, there will be more aircraft interrogating (on 1030MHz) and responding to interrogations on 1090MHz for transponder based systems (TCAS, SSR). Actually, no. More Mode S (vs Mode A/C) ...
StephenS's user avatar
  • 27.7k
7 votes

Can I share ACARS messages online?

As I'm sure you're aware, this portion of the Wireless Telegraphy Act is essentially unenforced for casual and personal airband scanning, with many airports, and air shows openly promoting and ...
Dan's user avatar
  • 9,308

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