Well, the office is kind of slow today, so I figured I’d bring up some approach plate training.
For those of you that may be new or missed my other posts, I am an Instrument Procedures Designer. None of my work is done in the United States, but foreign procedures instead.
So, have you ever wondered, while flying an IAP to your destination airport, possibly through a think cloud layer in which you couldn’t see out the windows and wonder “how much error/protection is built into this procedure to keep me from slamming into the mountains or cell phone towers I know are out there?”
Well the answer, quite a bit actually. Below are three procedures with both the areas overlayed on google earth and the approach plate.
First up SEQM ILS Y RWY 18
In this approach, you can see that there are mountains and dangerous terrain all around you, how much space do we give a pilot for any error that may occur? Well, that’s some very complicated math depending on the approach type but here is the visualization. With this, the plane is in the center of each segment.
For this overlay, I have removed the MSA and holding patterns as they blocked the view of the approach.
Next up is SPJC VOR Y RWY 15
With this overlay, I left the MSA up on one of the attachment so you can visualize what that looks like when using that during your flying. I once again, removed all holding patterns.
And finally, everyone’s second favorite airport
TNCM RNAV GPS RWY 10
And the overlay, with holdings removed.
On each of these you will see three different colors, which represent different portions of the approach. You will also see the fixes and you can use to know your position via the chart. Green is the Initial and Intermediate segments (IAF and IF) while blue is the final segment (FAF and circling). You may also notice that an approach only had half a side for circling, that is because for that approach, you are not authorized to circle where there is no blue. And then finally the yellow is the missed segment.
Got any questions? Let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them!