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Back Track - Port Or Starboard Turns?  
User currently offlineTravelsUK From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2007, 134 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 1 month 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2679 times:

I spent an hour or two watching the comings and goings at my local airport, Kefalonia (EFL), Greece, and noticed that when making a turn to back track some aircraft swung round to starborad (right) and others went port (left).

Can anyone shed light on the reason why some go left some go right?

My logic would suggest that if the Captain is in command of the aircraft the turn is made to port and if the Co-pilot was completeing the manoevre he / she would make the turn to starboard as there would be a better view of the runway edge. Would this be correct?

2 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15719 posts, RR: 26
Reply 1, posted (5 years 1 month 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2666 times:



Quoting TravelsUK (Thread starter):
My logic would suggest that if the Captain is in command of the aircraft the turn is made to port and if the Co-pilot was completeing the manoevre he / she would make the turn to starboard as there would be a better view of the runway edge. Would this be correct?

If this was the case, then many more planes would make the turn to the left since many airliners have a nose wheel tiller only on the captain's side.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineVirginFlyer From New Zealand, joined Sep 2000, 4537 posts, RR: 41
Reply 2, posted (5 years 1 month 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2639 times:



Quoting TravelsUK (Thread starter):
My logic would suggest that if the Captain is in command of the aircraft the turn is made to port and if the Co-pilot was completeing the manoevre he / she would make the turn to starboard as there would be a better view of the runway edge. Would this be correct?

I can't talk for the heavy metal, but in the light aircraft I fly I like to get my students to make the turn towards the right (that is, move over to the left then turn around towards the right). Why? It gives them a clear view of final so they can see any other aircraft which may be approaching.

The other thing to consider is whether a turning node is provided. In my experience, these are frequently on the left hand side as you are backtracking. I believe you should move over into the turning node then turn out of it, such that when you complete the turn you are lined up on centreline and don't have to use any runway length to centre yourself.

Oh, and I don't know how pervasive the terminology is elsewhere, but in my experience the terms 'port' and 'starboard' are very rarely used, particularly when it comes to describing directions you are turning an aircraft.

V/F



"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
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