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Lowering Class E between Melbourne and Cairns


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On 12/02/2021 at 8:34 AM, kgwilson said:

Skyecho 2 is cheaper than a boat radar and has a range exceeding 50 NM.

Two different technologies.

With adsb you won't be able to see aircrafts not equipped with adsb out.

With a radar, you could see everything, all aircrafts regardless of equipment (except F35 and alike), plus large birds and flocks. When flying I am not interested in anything further than 10nm. 

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RF guy, RAA and other organisations HAVE to reject this proposal out of hand or otherwise they are conceding Airservices the right to make arbitrary decisions. We are then reduced to just being suppli

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Low heights  above terrain give mechanical turbulence. Mountain ranges give standing waves that are far more  energy containing. Lapse rate has a lot to do with turbulence.. Be careful on the downwind side of ridges. A FRONT combined with orographic features is doubly risky. Low cloud base has been my general concern going over the ranges in light aircraft as well as the prospect of losing a motor over Tiger Country. Nev

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Email received from AFAP today:-
 

 

AIRSERVICES PROPOSE TO LOWER CLASS E TO 1500FT AGL. 

The AFAP wishes to bring to your attention airspace change proposals provided by Airservices. They are seeking industry feedback to the proposed lower the base of Class E airspace between Cairns and Melbourne to 1,500ft (AGL). The proposed Class E Airspace would replace those Class G segments below the current Class E LL of A085.

These proposals will have practical implications to the operational environment, and your “real-world” experience should be very useful in helping to inform Airservices of any challenges and unintended consequences.  

If you choose to contribute input, you may like to consider these facts related to this proposal:

·       Implications of Class E being controlled airspace for IFR but uncontrolled for VFR.

·       Higher prevalence of VFR aircraft at lower levels.

·       Airspace standardisation (increase or decrease in complexity related to workload issues).  Note that the proposal is for a LL related to AGL, and not AMSL.

·       Class E airspace has greater VMC requirements than Class G – Consider the issues this imposes on airspace access for VFR aircraft.

·       Class E requires a transponder – Many VH and RAAus aircraft are not transponder equipped.  What implications are there for regional operators, such as training institutions?

·       Efficiency issues - Class E will be controlled by Enroute rated Controllers, which limits separation to a minimum of 5nm.  Consider efficiency of airspace use for IFR aircraft, including taking off into a LL Class E controlled environment from regional aerodromes within the proposed area.  Will this effect efficient compliance to Ground Delay and Off-Blocks programs?

·       Controlled airspace will be below LSALT in many/most instances in this proposed airspace change area.

·       Sufficiency of VHF radio comms coverage and surveillance coverage (Radar / Secondary Raday / ADSB).

·       Is there sufficient time allowed for input given this could be a significant airspace policy and design shift?

The AFAP will provide a representative submission (as part of the AusALPA partnership), however we are encouraging direct pilot member feedback.  The consultation closes this Monday (February 15).  Contributions can be provided at: 

·       Web portal survey method: https://engage.airservicesaustralia.com/lower-base-class-e-east-coast/survey_tools/provide-feedback (Airservices preferred method - requires registration)

·       Email method: [email protected]

 

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12 hours ago, Ironpot said:

Email received from AFAP today:-
 

 

AIRSERVICES PROPOSE TO LOWER CLASS E TO 1500FT AGL. 

The AFAP wishes to bring to your attention airspace change proposals provided by Airservices. They are seeking industry feedback to the proposed lower the base of Class E airspace between Cairns and Melbourne to 1,500ft (AGL). The proposed Class E Airspace would replace those Class G segments below the current Class E LL of A085.

These proposals will have practical implications to the operational environment, and your “real-world” experience should be very useful in helping to inform Airservices of any challenges and unintended consequences.  

If you choose to contribute input, you may like to consider these facts related to this proposal:

·       Implications of Class E being controlled airspace for IFR but uncontrolled for VFR.

·       Higher prevalence of VFR aircraft at lower levels.

·       Airspace standardisation (increase or decrease in complexity related to workload issues).  Note that the proposal is for a LL related to AGL, and not AMSL.

·       Class E airspace has greater VMC requirements than Class G – Consider the issues this imposes on airspace access for VFR aircraft.

·       Class E requires a transponder – Many VH and RAAus aircraft are not transponder equipped.  What implications are there for regional operators, such as training institutions?

·       Efficiency issues - Class E will be controlled by Enroute rated Controllers, which limits separation to a minimum of 5nm.  Consider efficiency of airspace use for IFR aircraft, including taking off into a LL Class E controlled environment from regional aerodromes within the proposed area.  Will this effect efficient compliance to Ground Delay and Off-Blocks programs?

·       Controlled airspace will be below LSALT in many/most instances in this proposed airspace change area.

·       Sufficiency of VHF radio comms coverage and surveillance coverage (Radar / Secondary Raday / ADSB).

·       Is there sufficient time allowed for input given this could be a significant airspace policy and design shift?

The AFAP will provide a representative submission (as part of the AusALPA partnership), however we are encouraging direct pilot member feedback.  The consultation closes this Monday (February 15).  Contributions can be provided at: 

·       Web portal survey method: https://engage.airservicesaustralia.com/lower-base-class-e-east-coast/survey_tools/provide-feedback (Airservices preferred method - requires registration)

·       Email method: [email protected]

 

Who is AFAP?  Some may not know who the federation is. I had to look it up. Cheers

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I was at a NAV training session yesterday and many were discussing it but few had made a submission,  so I mentioned had to be in by tomorrow and some mentioned the WEB site was a hassle, so I gave Them the direct ASA email address I used that I got my response from.

It was also mentioned that a club submission was counted as only one and not representative of the member numbers.
Same from RAA counted as one submission only.

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AFAP say :
" Efficiency issues - Class E will be controlled by Enroute rated Controllers, which limits separation to a minimum of 5nm.  "

 

but that's for IFR traffic, not VFR traffic, right ?


I wonder what the ATC folk think.

 

Edited by RFguy
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4 minutes ago, RFguy said:

AFAP say :
" Efficiency issues - Class E will be controlled by Enroute rated Controllers, which limits separation to a minimum of 5nm.  "

 

but that's for IFR traffic, not VFR traffic, right ?


I wonder what the ATC folk think.

 

I’m sure they will call you up if they need to!

 

 

I hadn’t previously thought this through before either:-

12 hours ago, Ironpot said:
 

Class E airspace has greater VMC requirements than Class G – Consider the issues this imposes on airspace access for VFR aircraft.

 

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This proposal will be roundly condemned I feel and whoever actioned it should be spoken to. It does nothing to build confidence  in the regulator out there in the Aviation community..IF a Body has polled it's members, counting the result as one would be inappropriate.  Even IF a body has not polled it's members on this matter, it is taking responsibility  for getting it right WITH it's members, as it answers to them in the long run. (in  theory)  Nev

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If Airservices succeeds with this change I wonder if they have thought of the consequences. As the very best outcome for them would be that every RAAus aircraft gets a transponder fitted. What then? Class E is overseen by area control and they will be seeing probably a doubling of traffic, all of which will be able to talk to them, but do not have to do so.

I can foresee a controller calling up "Unidentified traffic 34 miles West of Bundaberg, what are your intentions? This will result in 3 separate aircraft responding. Not good for air safety.

If all those RAAus planes don't fit transponders, control will not see them and IFR traffic will think they are in the clear. Once again not good.

If CASA have any sense they will knock this on the head and I think that is what will happen. While we do not always agree with CASA I doubt that they can approve this stupid attempt to steal airspace.

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I think the ultimate plan is for every aircraft (and every drone) to have (ES) ADSB-OUT of some kind, which means there'll no longer be such a thing as "unidentified" traffic.

If all VFR aircraft fit, at a minimum, EC/TABS and all regional RPTs (who need to venture down among the weeds of E or G) have modern CDTI gear which will show up these targets (complete with ID and SIL=1 position integrity) then everyone should be safe and happy.

So why is the proposal we're discussing not along these lines (even reviving the idea of subsidised low-cost ADSB for VFR) and ? It will probably get there eventually but CASA seems to want to make a fuss first for some reason. 

Without inside knowledge of how it works, I'm skeptical about this good-cop/bad-cop scenario that has ASA dumping all this on CASA at the same time as they're dumping it on us. C'mon that's not how things work with Canberra colleagues. The plan is, among other things, complex, extensive and, necessarily, totally integrated.  After all, it's a CASA circular that sets out (begrudgingly), for example, the TABS exemption from transponder use in Class E.

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Would love to have gliders have ADSB-OUT. In my short flying time, on 3 occassions now, at three different ADs,  I have had gliders come out of nowhere under my nose close enough to read a  newspaper inside their canopy (not quite).  ....

 

and

not on the radio to be heard at all...despite my calling in circuit.....only reason I know about glider ops at those ADs was that there is a stack of them lined up on the ground. . I'm not complaining, just it is a surprise when it happens

 

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I read somewhere that gliders have their own channel, makes perfect sense. At least with a battery operated TABS there is no reason why they can't be so equipped.  

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from what I can gather - usually there is a  person sitting on the harddeck somewhere,  with two radios in their hands. One for glider ops, the other on the CTAF.

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Most gliders monitor the airspace they are in (CTAF or Area) and their own channel that they use to keep in touch with one another. FLARM was invented by Swiss Glider pilots in 2004 so has been around a while and now the upgraded Power FLARM is able to detect ADSB in and Mode S Transponder signals. FLARM made the jump to VHF GA quite a few years ago mainly in Europe. It's original range was only 3 km or so and that has increased to about 10km with Power Flarm. A great initiative by Glider Pilots especially when a lot of them are thermalling close together. Range is the big problem for fast VFR GA though.

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Flarm could be likened to Sony's beta video system, the sooner we all get on the VHS (ADS-B) system the better.  

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Flyer Mag in the UK tried to disentangle the complexities of EC with this special feature.  Because so much of the tech, as well as the regs, work differently here, we have to extrapolate with care. 

But the meta-message is clear: so far nothing is clear.

 

https://issuu.com/flyerdigital/docs/flyerdecember2020/s/11217086

Edited by Garfly
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Excellent article. What it says to me is that the RA/GA community is setting the pace. Transponders will become increasingly less relevant as ATC gain sufficient capability to receive ADSB out data. The issue regarding placement is somewhat moot. You are interested in seeing what you could bang into in the direction you are going then SkyEcho 2 does that well. Converging traffic from the rear you will not see but the pilot of that aircraft would have to be asleep not to see you. In that situation a transponder will only be valid if ATC can see the potential problem and alert the pilots. In many cases at low VFR altitudes they won't even see it.

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Place ADSB IN ground stations at mobile phone tower sites to receive data and disseminate it?

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Sent a reply;

I do not support the proposed changes to ‘E’ limits; to fly at or below 1500 ft AGL is not safe, particularly when flying over areas of the Great Dividing range down the Eastern part of Australia and much of this high ground is in this proposed area.

 

This is because a safe landing glide in the event of an engine failure is not possible from such a low height above ground level.  Wherever an engine problem occurs, pilots need height above ground (gives time and distance to select a suitable emergency landing area) to be able to glide or be able to fly to a suitable landing area and at 1,500 ft above ground level, it does not give a pilot much opportunity to select and get to a landing area safely.

 

When accident rates increase whoever is responsible for implementing the unsafe 1,500 ft AGL limit flying requirement and policy needs to be held accountable.

 

Rules, requirements and policies I believed must be designed to make flying safer.

 

It is clear to the many Pilots I have communicated with that clearly these new rules do not increase the safety margins for Recreational Pilots in their aircraft, quite the opposite; increases the possibility of danger.

 

The new rules forcing RAA aircraft to fly under 1500 ft AGL increases the congestion as most pilots would probably be flying at close to the 1’500 ft for safety reasons where previously they would be spread out through the available class “E” height, flying at varying heights over many thousands of feet.

 

I hope that the policymakers are now better informed from the numerous Pilot replies that draw on their experience and airmanship knowledge that informs yourself and the regulator about the dangerous unsafe situation you have obviously failed to identify in the drafting of this airspace change.

 

I do not support this proposal and I am an aircraft owner and current pilot.

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Part of an article from Kitplanes Magazine.......

 

Do-It-Yourself Stealth (and How to Survive It)

The Government might spend billions of dollars to develop stealth aircraft, but many small-aircraft owners discovered this secret years ago: Fly a no-radio (NORDO) airplane out of an uncontrolled field. Too many pilots don’t look for traffic unless it announces itself on the radio.

The problem is just going to get worse with ADS-B. Devices that display other aircraft’s ADS-B Out data are relatively inexpensive and are being installed in a lot of airplanes. There is going to be, sadly, a significant portion of the pilot population that is going to become too reliant on ADS-B information. An aircraft without ADS-B Out is going to ruin their whole day.

Your job is to make sure it doesn’t ruin yours.

landing-300x152.jpg If your aircraft doesn’t have ADS-B Out, keep a careful watch for those fixated on their displays.

The basic solution: Fly like you’re invisible. Always assume the other aircraft doesn’t see you. Even if you make the usual radio calls (assuming you aren’t NORDO), some may find a position call without a corresponding ADS-B signal confusing. They may fiddle with the display, trying to figure out why you don’t show up instead of looking out the window.

If it’s an uncontrolled airport, put your airplane where people expect to see one—use the most common pattern for the field.

I flew from a busy uncontrolled field without a radio for seven years. I used what I called the “NORDO Shuffle” when entering the pattern: Waggle wings and yaw around to make sure other aircraft aren’t hidden in your blind spots. It’s a good trick in the ADS-B era, too. If another aircraft expresses uncertainty about your location, rock your wings. It changes the light/shadow pattern of your airplane and catches the eye.

ADS-B In can be a very positive tool, and the majority of pilots will use it appropriately. However, there are going to be those who fixate on the cockpit display. It’s your neck, too, so be ready to avoid them.

—R.W.

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This whole issue seems to be a resolution in search of a problem. En-route issues are few and far between. It is in the vicinity of uncontrolled aerodromes (& controlled ones where entry is denied) where danger lurks. This hasn't changed since we began flying. RPT traffic has steadily increased over the years leading to controlled airspace and now places like Ballina which remain uncontrolled are having  bits of complexity added with the 10 mile and now 15 mile MBZ with a glorified Unicom service, but with a failure to address the issue of over transmits with 4 local aerodromes on the same frequency.

 

While RPT has increased GA has declined but RA has increased to fill the gap. The difference now is that 70% of RA do not have transponders so these aircraft keep out of CTR. I have no idea how many GA aircraft do not have transponders & neither does CASA or ASA.

 

I trained at a controlled aerodrome with RPT and International traffic. Our club had 5 aircraft used for training and a British flight training organisation was operating 40 aircraft. I knew most of the controllers and visited the tower every now & again. Transponders were irrelevant as most could not be seen on the radar anyway. The controllers were pretty busy keeping separation and used the ticket and position board, radio and Mark 1 eyeball with binocular assistance to keep everything running smoothly. There were probably a few incursions but there were never any collisions and I don't even know of any near misses.

 

What has changed is electronics and the information that can be provided to an already busy pilot and that is where the problems are going to manifest themselves.

Edited by kgwilson
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