Altitude deviations

freighthumper

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no, it was a question on a recurrent training test I have to get done and wasnt sure about it..
 

LJ45

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if you are off by more than 300 ft on the mode c alt., it trips their computer.
 

ATCT

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Well it doesnt "trip" anything in the computer so to speak.

Our Altitude readouts are in 100 ft. The 300ft comes into effect regarding calidation of Mode C readouts. If you say "Leaving 2.4 for 5" and I see 2,000 in the altitude im recieving, then your mode-c is screwed up.

Basically, if I see you're off by more than 100ft from what ive assigned, im going to start asking. (First im going to verify the local altimeter to ya...the polite way of saying you're above or below lol)

ATCT
 

Amish RakeFight

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Curious.

Hey ATCT,

What percentage of controllers have pilot certificates such as yourself?

Does this figure vary much between the type of controller as well.

Do they usually have it before the position or tend to acquire it after being on the job some.

Just curious as to how aviation-crazy controllers are. We already know how fanatical most pilots are about flying.
 

Ravengirl

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Hey ATCT,

What percentage of controllers have pilot certificates such as yourself?

Does this figure vary much between the type of controller as well.

Do they usually have it before the position or tend to acquire it after being on the job some.

Just curious as to how aviation-crazy controllers are. We already know how fanatical most pilots are about flying.

Well, I'm not ATCT, but I thought I'd throw my $0.02 in here. I had my private pilot certificate long before I ever thought about becoming an air traffic controller, because originally I wanted to be a professional pilot. I just happened to switch sides, is all :)

I work at Denver Center, and many of my colleagues there are pilots as well. I'd say it's a pretty even split between those who started before ATC and those who started after beginning the ATC career. We also have a good number of controllers who are into homebuilt airplanes, and are building/learning to fly simultaneously!

However, there are plenty of controllers who couldn't tell you the difference between a Cessna 172 and a Boeing 747 (and you know, they all look the same on radar anyway). Plenty of controllers don't care at all about learning to fly, either. So it goes both ways, like most other things.

SW
 

Amish RakeFight

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Thanks Ravengirl. I've always been curious about the other side and their relationship with aviation.

I used to CFI with a guy who could've gone to the regionals but pursued the controller position becasue it paid more.

Don't you guys need like a 2nd class medical too?
 

Lrjtcaptain

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We have a few pilots at ORD as well. Myself included. You'd be suprised how many controllers at least have a private.
 

2EASYPilot

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We have a few pilots at ORD as well. Myself included. You'd be suprised how many controllers at least have a private.

Quick complement to you sir...we are based across the lake from Chicago and operate in the airspace often. Chicago controllers, all airports included , have got to be among the best in the country. Considering the traffic levels you and your coharts deal with, my hat is off to you.
 

dickburns

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With regards to the 300 ft, that isn't always the case. It depends on if the controller has the assigned altitude in as a hard (ie final) altitude or interim, in the computer. With an interim, and readout other than that exact number will display. With a hard altitude, there is a buffer in the computer that will show the plane level as long as it is +/- 300 ft of the assigned.
 

Midnight Flyer

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What is the altitude deviation at which ATC will query the flight crew?

Always be on your altitude and do not deviate from it.

But, if you're off your altitude by 100 feet for whatever reason and ATC asks what your altitude is, you better say you're at the altitude you were told to maintain. Then get your @$$ back up there, especially if you value you and your crew's certificates.

That's not the answer I'd give on your recurrent test, but that's what I would do in everyday line flying.
 

aa73

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Hey ATCT or any controller,

While we're on the subject, I thought I'd point out something I've been wondering for awhile. The Md80 has a cruise autopilot/autothrottle mode called PMS, "Performance Management System", or PERF. When you engage PERF in cruise flight, the autopilot "hunts +/- 125 ft to maintain cruise Mach, rather than moving the authrottles back and forth. Obviously it is legal since it's an approved cruise mode. Do you guys notice the +/- 125 deviations when working us Md80 guys, or not? And would you call us on it?

Thanks,
73
 

Way2Broke

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Brings up another good question, how often do Radars update?
 

mule

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Along the same lines...if a crew commits a "violatable" (is that even a word?) offense, do you ask them to call you or can they just get blindsided a few weeks later with a call from the FAA or their Chief Pilot?
 

flytheblue

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This is an old post, but I just read it!
I'm curious out this one myself- is there any discussion before paperwork is filed (phone call after landing, etc), or will the flight crew find out without prior notice?
 

mule

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From the stories I have heard, ATC has told the crew to call 1-800-UR-SMOKED...but wanted to get the "official" word from FI.
 

Citrus1

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If ATC doesn't give you a phone number they can still violate you, although The brasher doctrine applies.

Essentially if you get a phone number you'll fill out a NASA or ASAP report, and you're (usually) covered. If they don't give you a number (as they're required to do) AND you get a LOI, you can still receive a NOPCA (notice of proposed certificate action).

You argue (or your attorney argues) with the Brasher Doctrine and you get the same privileges as if you did fill out a NASA form. click here for an article that may clear it up.

Ive asked for more phone numbers from controllers than Ive gotten. I just wish I could talk on the the phone to the actual controller...
 
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