Aircraft Operations

Introduction:

  • Aircraft operations guide the flow of traffic throughout the National Airspace System by the use of standard procedures
  • Increased traffic congestion, aircraft in climb and descent attitudes, and pilot preoccupation with cockpit duties are some factors that increase the hazardous accident potential near the airport
  • The situation is further compounded when the weather is marginal, that is, just meeting VFR requirements
  • Pilots must be particularly alert when operating in the vicinity of an airport
  • This section defines some rules, practices, and procedures that pilots should be familiar with and adhere to for safe airport operations
  • Aircraft operations begin with a departures from the terminal environment and transition into the Enroute environment
  • Operations include:

Airport Operations:

  • Increased traffic congestion, aircraft in climb and descent attitudes, and pilot preoccupation with cockpit duties are some factors that increase the hazardous accident potential near the airport. The situation is further compounded when the weather is marginal, that is, just meeting VFR requirements. Pilots must be particularly alert when operating in the vicinity of an airport. This section defines some rules, practices, and procedures that pilots should be familiar with and adhere to for safe airport operations

Departures:

  • Departure procedures facilitate the flow of traffic out of the terminal area
  • They may be simple such as departing in a direction on course to complex instrument procedures through the busiest airspace in the country

En-Route Operations:

Arrival Procedures:

  • Transitioning from the enroute to the terminal environment often requires the use of standardized procedures to guide the flow of traffic
  • The FAA/DoD accomplish this task through Standard Terminal Arrivals (STARs)
  • ILS or LOC 22L

Approach & Landing:

Terminal Area:

Night Operations:

  • Night operations require increase vigilance, even for the most experienced pilot
  • Although operations are generally the same, everything becomes a little more challenging and therefore risky at night
    • Given the increase in risk, some regulations are buffered to increase the margin of safety

Gliding/Soaring:

Unmanned Aircraft Systems:

Conclusion:

  • Additional resources are available through tools such as the FAA's Runway Safety Simulator
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References: