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jb747

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I asked this in the JQ delays and cancellations thread but many of our AFF members appear not to fly with that QF subsidiary and hence are unlikely to read that thread.

This morning LST looked to be fogbound. JQ731 almost made it, but turned back and diverted to MEL. By 1015 hours, LST reopened.

HBA had its 'mid morning peak' at the time, but was open. Is there any reason why JQ731 could not have diverted to HBA, delivering passengers and freight to an airport two hours or so by road to LST? Of course, departing passengers and freight (from LST) might have been stranded. At 1045 hours, JQ731 has yet to leave MEL for the second time on Monday 5 June, so it is now hours late.

I really don't know anything much about Tasmania. I've never operated there at any point in my career.

You're right in saying that the Hobart weather was not an issue. But was parking? There isn't enough information to say why they took that course of action.
 

jb747

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Thanks JB747, what would be the ideal map handling solution on aircraft such as the ones you fly if ipads are the almost ideal?

What are the pros and cons of the FMC holding all the necessary map data?

The FMC data is really only a series of waypoints, altitudes, and speeds. They also hold the ILS (navaid) frequencies, and will autotune them. Beyond that, the other data, such as the MSAs, ATC comms, have no relevance to building the FMC tracks. The data is quite cryptic, and whilst we can read it to confirm it agrees with charts, it would not be at all intuitive trying to use it as your sole source of information. The charts contain quite a dense amount of information, all of which we need to read through, even though all of it isn't needed to load an approach. PDFs (and similar) are great, as you blow them up to read them, or just let them fill the screen to get the overall picture. Plus, just about every FMC installation is different. The Jepp app is nicely standardised.
 

joey1695

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Something I was pondering today.
For a heavy out of say SYD or MEL, do you generally depart via a SID or is the initial phase mostly vectoring until cleared onto your route?
Thanks Joe.
 

AviatorInsight

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Something I was pondering today.
For a heavy out of say SYD or MEL, do you generally depart via a SID or is the initial phase mostly vectoring until cleared onto your route?
Thanks Joe.

G'day Joe, we always depart via a SID. Whether that's a radar SID (SYD9 for example) or a procedural SID (WOL2 departure). The difference being, is that on a radar SID, it will usually be to maintain the runway heading until you reach a certain height (800ft in the case of the SY9) then you'll be given vectors to planned route. On a procedural SID, it's designed to pick up your flight planned route at some point along the SID without the need for ATC to vector you onto your flight planned route.
 

Boris spatsky

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I really don't know anything much about Tasmania. I've never operated there at any point in my career.

You're right in saying that the Hobart weather was not an issue. But was parking? There isn't enough information to say why they took that course of action.

QF/JQ share three bays in Hobart. There is no overflow capacity as VA have 2 and the rest are around the corner and have the freighters plus transient on them.

Put an A320 on a bay off schedule and you now impact all the other QF/JQ flights - forcing them to wait for bays. Even on a good day the 717s and A320s can be forced to wait due to bay capacity limitations.
 
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Boris spatsky

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I was just wondering, when an aircraft gets "refurbished" with new seats etc. are any changes made to the coughpit or crew rest areas?

From my experience, no. The flightdeck seats on all jets are fairly uncomfortable - i don't think there are many better options. The seat covers only get changed when someone writes them up in the tech log!
 

clazman

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Curious about flight radar data, you can click upon many aircraft and it reports their altitude what appears to be incorrect eg 36,975

Normally use the Ipad app, but below is a example of one from the website view


Capture22.JPG

Is this due to different pressure settings, or just a quirky website / app problem?
 

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joey1695

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Any of our resident pilots still use a manual flight computer? Or are they outdated in todays high tech commercial airliner coughpits?
 

jb747

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Curious about flight radar data, you can click upon many aircraft and it reports their altitude what appears to be incorrect eg 36,975

Normally use the Ipad app, but below is a example of one from the website view

Is this due to different pressure settings, or just a quirky website / app problem?

I'll check, but I think that ADSB altitude is derived from GPS. It's not what is shown in the coughpit.
 

Boof1

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QF/JQ share three bays in Hobart. There is no overflow capacity as VA have 2 and the rest are around the corner and have the freighters plus transient on them.

Put an A320 on a bay off schedule and you now impact all the other QF/JQ flights - forcing them to wait for bays. Even on a good day the 717s and A320s can be forced to wait due to bay capacity limitations.

Based on this, and JB's reply re weather being ok in HBA, I'm wondering if you both (and other pilots in the thread) could share how much of an influence company operations have in making a diversion decision? I respect that the Captain has the final decision but how much influence would an Ops team place on diverting to certain port over another. This JQ flight held for almost an hour before heading back to MEL and the aircraft then went back on to it's scheduled SYD service straight after, with a replacement aircraft operating the JQ731 service later in the day.

Background to the question: I often listen to archived audio on LiveATC, especially when there are diversions or weather issues and I've heard the JQ crews often say "We've spoken to Operations and we are going to xx_" when talking to ATC about diverting. Often this is the case with the early AM and late evening flights ex MEL to LST or HBA. There is no pattern to the diversions. Sometimes they go to the other airport in Tassie (when the weather is clear of course), sometimes they go back to MEL. On the other hand I've never heard reference to "Ops" by a VA or QF/Qlink crew.

I know you may not be able to speak about JQ specifically but would appreciate any insights.

Thanks
 

jb747

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Based on this, and JB's reply re weather being ok in HBA, I'm wondering if you both (and other pilots in the thread) could share how much of an influence company operations have in making a diversion decision? I respect that the Captain has the final decision but how much influence would an Ops team place on diverting to certain port over another. This JQ flight held for almost an hour before heading back to MEL and the aircraft then went back on to it's scheduled SYD service straight after, with a replacement aircraft operating the JQ731 service later in the day.

I've had to think about this one for a couple of days....

Operations is a bit of a wide description. If I want to talk to the duty Captain, or fleet manager, you'd probably consider that to be ops, whilst I place them on a level well above. The operations centres are different animals, and cover a wide range of items, from cargo, through passengers to aircraft utilisation. There is generally very little aviation knowledge (though they may think otherwise). Maintenance watch is a separate group.

I can say that operations have never, in my entire career, affected my choice of action. They've sometimes wanted one different to my choice, but they have zero ability to make me go anywhere that I don't want. If I need to talk to them, it's mostly to tell them what I have already decided. They're useful in gathering information that may affect your decision, or if you've already made it, for getting things under way to put the operation back on track.
 
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What's the role of the "duty Captain". Is this position also replicated in other airlines? And is this a rotating position for line captains - akin to a "duty doctor" in a hospital emergency department
 

jb747

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What's the role of the "duty Captain". Is this position also replicated in other airlines? And is this a rotating position for line captains - akin to a "duty doctor" in a hospital emergency department

As usual, I don't know what other airlines do. I expect that they have some equivalent.

It rotates through the management Captains only. As it's never included me, I don't know what his duties are from the management perspective, but he represents an immediate avenue for me if I need to talk to someone who is representing the Chief Pilot. If you need to do something that's unusual, or perhaps even outside of the normal company rules, he'll be the first person to call.
 

Tortuga

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What is the black 'dust' that accumulates on the wings near engines - over time can build up cause any issues? Do planes get a regular wash as well?
 

jb747

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What is the black 'dust' that accumulates on the wings near engines - over time can build up cause any issues? Do planes get a regular wash as well?

Aircraft are basically huge machines, and they get pretty dirty. I'm not sure that we're talking about the same 'dust', but there is a lot of brake dust thrown up over the lower sections of the aircraft. You try very hard not to touch too much when doing a preflight. There is a bit of deposit from the engine exhaust, but not a great deal. Dirt and muck gets thrown up by the tyres too.

They are cleaned, but not as often as your car (well, probably more often than many). Biggest issue these days is that when washed all sorts of nasty stuff comes off them, and the cleaning chemicals themselves are not very friendly. Upshot is that it has become a specialised job, which mostly happens when other major work is being done.
 

Boris spatsky

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Based on this, and JB's reply re weather being ok in HBA, I'm wondering if you both (and other pilots in the thread) could share how much of an influence company operations have in making a diversion decision? I respect that the Captain has the final decision but how much influence would an Ops team place on diverting to certain port over another. This JQ flight held for almost an hour before heading back to MEL and the aircraft then went back on to it's scheduled SYD service straight after, with a replacement aircraft operating the JQ731 service later in the day.

Background to the question: I often listen to archived audio on LiveATC, especially when there are diversions or weather issues and I've heard the JQ crews often say "We've spoken to Operations and we are going to xx_" when talking to ATC about diverting. Often this is the case with the early AM and late evening flights ex MEL to LST or HBA. There is no pattern to the diversions. Sometimes they go to the other airport in Tassie (when the weather is clear of course), sometimes they go back to MEL. On the other hand I've never heard reference to "Ops" by a VA or QF/Qlink crew.

I know you may not be able to speak about JQ specifically but would appreciate any insights.

Thanks

Ops can provide some insight into options for diverts if you can get them on SATPHONE or ACARS and have the time - it's really only viable to talk to them if you have a problem that is not time (or fuel) critical. Most short haul flights don't carry a lot of extra fuel unless they need to so sometimes the options are legal but limited.

I generally avoid talking to ops because as JB said they have financial priorities that we aren't even aware of. An example i have seen is one crew who flew for two hours and at the destination could not get in because of thunderstorms. They had 2.5 hours fuel remaining and decided to call ops as it was the last flight of the night to that destination. Ops told them that for financial reasons they were to go back to the port of departure, 2 hours away (even though there were other supported ports within 30 minutes). So they flew all the way back. I personally would not have talked to ops (nor is it encouraged or mentioned in any of the ops manuals).
 

Dale Eastham

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Aircraft are basically huge machines, and they get pretty dirty. I'm not sure that we're talking about the same 'dust', but there is a lot of brake dust thrown up over the lower sections of the aircraft. You try very hard not to touch too much when doing a preflight. There is a bit of deposit from the engine exhaust, but not a great deal. Dirt and muck gets thrown up by the tyres too.

They are cleaned, but not as often as your car (well, probably more often than many). Biggest issue these days is that when washed all sorts of nasty stuff comes off them, and the cleaning chemicals themselves are not very friendly. Upshot is that it has become a specialised job, which mostly happens when other major work is being done.

On a similar note (although im getting further away from what a pilot may know I suppose), on a recent flight I was looking out of a very scratched window that made taking photos of the scenery more futile than usual (I also couldnt get a good photo of the scratches as my phone camera didnt want to focus on them). I did wonder what actually causes those scratches on a plane window - ice crystals or dust was my best guess, but didn't seem likely?
 
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