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LAX Approach Runways Question  
User currently offlineCtrav11 From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 8 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 3229 times:

I have a question about the approach runways at LAX that I am confident scores and scores of members of this forum will be able to answer. I was having dinner at The Proud Bird Restaurant tonight -- right at the foot of the southernmost approach runway -- and it appeared to me that the planes coming in for a landing on the northernmost runway -- I know, I know. I'm not using the technical terms for them because I don't know them -- were descending more slowly than the planes landing right in front of us. An optical illusion? Is the northern runway shorter??

 Confused

16 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineLaxintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25363 posts, RR: 49
Reply 1, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 3219 times:

Northern runways are off set further West. Hence planes are higher at the same given north-south reference point you would have from the Proud Bird.


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Snorre - VAP



In the photo you can see the Northern runways are further West closer to the ocean.



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineRemcor From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 358 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 3156 times:

You know, looking at the layout of the LAX runways it seems like there's an answer to cut time and money taxiing. Since almost all takeoff's and landing go from east to west (right to left in the photo) then if all takeoffs were from the northern runways and all landings were on the southern runways it would seem that it would cut the distance that aircraft would have to taxi to get to and from the gate.

Of course this assumes that the runway lengths and navigation aids are identical on all 4 runways, and I know this isn't the case, but it would seems like a neato idea.


User currently offlineSan747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 4943 posts, RR: 12
Reply 3, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 2994 times:



Quoting Remcor (Reply 2):
You know, looking at the layout of the LAX runways it seems like there's an answer to cut time and money taxiing. Since almost all takeoff's and landing go from east to west (right to left in the photo) then if all takeoffs were from the northern runways and all landings were on the southern runways it would seem that it would cut the distance that aircraft would have to taxi to get to and from the gate.

Of course this assumes that the runway lengths and navigation aids are identical on all 4 runways, and I know this isn't the case, but it would seems like a neato idea.

It would only cut taxi times down if all arriving flights docked at gates/terminals in the south complex (T4-8) but then magically (or via tow) made it up to one of the north complex terminals (T1-3, TBIT) to takeoff. With the current system, traffic can be logically split... AA flights will most of the time use the southern runways (24L/R) to take off and land, because that's the side of the airport AA is located. Similarly WN most of the time uses the 25s, the northern runways, because its terminal is on the north side of the airport.



Scotty doesn't know...
User currently offlineIAHFLYR From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 4790 posts, RR: 22
Reply 4, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 2982 times:



Quoting Remcor (Reply 2):
You know, looking at the layout of the LAX runways it seems like there's an answer to cut time and money taxiing. Since almost all takeoff's and landing go from east to west (right to left in the photo) then if all takeoffs were from the northern runways and all landings were on the southern runways it would seem that it would cut the distance that aircraft would have to taxi to get to and from the gate.

The required distance between runway center lines on the north complex and south complex does not allow for simultaneous ILS approaches to the same side of the airport unless they are visuals approaches and visual separation is applied between each pair of aircraft....which sounds simple however, it is a communication nightmare in a busy sector which the LAX finals are.

Then for departures, again neither complex has the required distance between runway center lines for simultaneous departures without having to apply wake turbulence separation when required.

Sounds like a great idea but it is difficult to put in to conduct.



Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
User currently offlineFuturesdpdcop From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 1293 posts, RR: 5
Reply 5, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 2925 times:



Quoting San747 (Reply 3):
AA flights will most of the time use the southern runways (24L/R) to take off and land, because that's the side of the airport AA is located. Similarly WN most of the time uses the 25s, the northern runways, because its terminal is on the north side of the airport.

Reverse that. The 24's are on the north side of the field (Terminals 1-3 which is where WN is located) and the 25's are on the south side of the field (Terminals 4-8 which is where AA is located.)


User currently offlineChase From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 1054 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 2882 times:

As long as we're discussing LAX runways...I've always wondered...at airports with more than 3 parallel runways, why do they choose to increment the number for one pair of runways (i.e. 24R&L, 25R&L)?

It seems to me that using A/B/C/D might have been a better choice in hindsight, whenever the first parallel runways were created anywhere, since the use of L/R and then L/C/R kind of has a cap at 3 just due to linguistics (as there's not a single word for "the second one from the left"). But, I admit it would be near-impossible to switch to that now.

Another idea for how to standardize this could have been 24.1, 24.2, 24.3, 24.4.

Or maybe L, LC, RC, R. But I guess these would be bad, in case one letter of "LC" or "RC" is dropped in a radio transmission you'd have an a/c landing on the wrong runway...and that's only expandable to 5 anyway (L, LC, C, RC, R) before you start getting into three letters.

Apologies for the disorganized rambling...  Smile


User currently offlineSan747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 4943 posts, RR: 12
Reply 7, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week ago) and read 2776 times:



Quoting Futuresdpdcop (Reply 5):

Reverse that. The 24's are on the north side of the field (Terminals 1-3 which is where WN is located) and the 25's are on the south side of the field (Terminals 4-8 which is where AA is located.)

Oops! Stupid mistake, I should've remembered that!



Scotty doesn't know...
User currently offlineJe89_w From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 2361 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week ago) and read 2771 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
PHOTO SCREENER



Quoting Chase (Reply 6):
Another idea for how to standardize this could have been 24.1, 24.2, 24.3, 24.4.



Quoting Chase (Reply 6):
Or maybe L, LC, RC, R

It would just make things way more complicated, for both pilots and controllers. Why would you want to have 4 runways with the same number? Take LAX for example; the 25s are the southern runways and the 24s are the northern runways . . . makes things easier for everybody.

Even PHX, with only three parallel runways, has a 25L, 25R, and 26, with the terminal separating the 25s and 26.


User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25311 posts, RR: 22
Reply 9, posted (6 years 5 months 1 week ago) and read 2766 times:



Quoting Chase (Reply 6):
As long as we're discussing LAX runways...I've always wondered...at airports with more than 3 parallel runways, why do they choose to increment the number for one pair of runways (i.e. 24R&L, 25R&L)?

Unique numbers for each pair of runways probably reduces the possibility for confusion and enhances safety.


User currently offlinePhllax From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 437 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2708 times:

As far as landing go, the RIIVER and RIIVER 1 approaches are for the 25's and SEAVU and SEAVU1 are for the 24's.

As far as departures, I believe they try their best to send all departures going north to the 24's to avoid cross traffic during heavy periods. Flights going East use both runways, with those that can doing the Loop departure off of 24 to avoid too much traffic in the normal departure patterns. In order to do the Loop departure the airplane needs to be above 10,000 when it crosses the back over the beach. Normal departures have about a 250 knot speed restriction for a good period of time.

During the overnight period when landings are to the East, they use the 25's for departures and the 6's for arrivals.


User currently offlineChase From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 1054 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2700 times:

Thanks for the replies to my question...I guess my followup is: Say at LAX the runways are at 243 degrees (just picking a number here). Does it really not cause any problems that two of them are mis-rounded to 25 instead of 24? Obviously I know that lots of flights arrive and depart LAX safely every day, but...does this inconsistency cause anything relating to navigation to have to be manually overridden?

I guess to word that more clearly: if you tell the aircraft's computer that you're landing on 25L, and then you come in on a heading of 243 degrees, is the computer going to complain to you that you're off-course (since a runway numbered 25L should have an orientation somewhere between 245 and 255 degrees)?

Obviously from my questions, I'm not a pilot.


User currently offlineSan747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 4943 posts, RR: 12
Reply 12, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2669 times:



Quoting Chase (Reply 11):
Does it really not cause any problems that two of them are mis-rounded to 25 instead of 24? Obviously I know that lots of flights arrive and depart LAX safely every day, but...does this inconsistency cause anything relating to navigation to have to be manually overridden?

I guess to word that more clearly: if you tell the aircraft's computer that you're landing on 25L, and then you come in on a heading of 243 degrees, is the computer going to complain to you that you're off-course (since a runway numbered 25L should have an orientation somewhere between 245 and 255 degrees)?

Obviously from my questions, I'm not a pilot.

It's not a problem because the way an ILS is programmed is that the ILS has a specific heading, for example, the 243 you mentioned and a 3 or 4-letter ID. The runway number is really for the ATC to specify and differentiate runways.



Scotty doesn't know...
User currently offlineChase From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 1054 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2655 times:



Quoting San747 (Reply 12):
It's not a problem because the way an ILS is programmed is that the ILS has a specific heading, for example, the 243 you mentioned and a 3 or 4-letter ID. The runway number is really for the ATC to specify and differentiate runways.

Gotcha, thanks.

Sorry, ctrav11, if I've derailed your post...


User currently onlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26490 posts, RR: 75
Reply 14, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2525 times:



Quoting Ctrav11 (Thread starter):
Is the northern runway shorter??

The Northern runways are shorter and set off more to the west.

Quoting Phllax (Reply 10):
As far as landing go, the RIIVER and RIIVER 1 approaches are for the 25's and SEAVU and SEAVU1 are for the 24's.

The SEAVU1 is relatively new, supplanting the PARADISE FOUR as the preferred approach for the South Complex.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineModesto2 From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 2801 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 2479 times:



Quoting Phllax (Reply 10):
As far as landing go, the RIIVER and RIIVER 1 approaches are for the 25's and SEAVU and SEAVU1 are for the 24's.

I respectfully beg to differ. Many times, the high volume of arrival traffic does not permit air traffic control to predictably assign runways. I often get 25L with the Seavu arrival and may sometimes get 24R. Conversely, I often get 24R with the Riiver arrival but sometimes get 25L. There are some arrivals that are mostly predictable like the Sadde that usually gets 24R and the Vista arrival that usually gets 25L. The important thing to note is that you take what's given and make no requests with the SOCAL TRACON! Actually, they're usually nice, but very rarely have I witnessed approved runway requests.


User currently offlineAAR90 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 3474 posts, RR: 46
Reply 16, posted (6 years 5 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 2474 times:



Quoting Phllax (Reply 10):
As far as landing go, the RIIVER and RIIVER 1 approaches are for the 25's and SEAVU and SEAVU1 are for the 24's.

SEAVU is primarily for southern complex (25L/R). Note: the number after an arrival's name is the revision number --there is no "SEAVU Arrival" for ATC purposes; it will ALWAYS be a numbers STAR: "SEAVU1" for example.

Quoting Chase (Reply 11):
does this inconsistency cause anything relating to navigation to have to be manually overridden?

No. Just remember that the runway name is simply that... just a NAME for a runway.



*NO CARRIER* -- A Naval Aviator's worst nightmare!
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