Today I’m requesting a new ATC message.
What is it?
This feature would work at a busier airport with more than one frequency per service. When a controller change is in progress, the new controller would open the alternate frequency (we’ll use Heathrow Tower - 118.50 is closing and 118.70 is opening), and the outgoing controller (118.50) would send the current “Attention all aircraft, Heathrow Tower is now closed, good day!”, but modified to say “Attention all aircraft, Heathrow Tower is now closed, please contact Heathrow Tower on 118.70, good day!”.
Why is this needed?
The way controller changes work is a bit messy at the moment. There is a gap where no ATC is present, which can be quite overwhelming for the new controller. This would allow a smooth, quick transition to the new controller and wouldn’t be too difficult to implement. I understand that this is not a foolproof feature, but it could stand as a short term solution until a more complex feature is implemented:
Another example is if too approaches are merging into one, say if Heathrow south approach is closing but no one is taking it. The closing controller can quickly and easily send all aircraft to the other approach frequency.
Thanks for reading, and please let me know of any problems, questions or improvement in the comments.