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ATL Hartsfield Operations Question For Pilotst  
User currently offlineWilliam From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 1680 posts, RR: 1
Posted (14 years 4 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 2671 times:

DFW has a similar runway confirguration as ATL(yes DFW has more runways). At DFW ATC will stagger arriving aircraft and use the inner "takeoff" runway for landings also. And during heavy departure periods will use the outer "landing" runway for takeoff. This type of operation,literally doubles your runway capacity.

ATL is one of the world's busiest airports,yet utillize only four runways,do ATL ATC utillize their runways the same?

Some may say ATC rules do not allow such an operation(regarding aircraft separation),all I can say is go to DFW yourself and see.

8 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineMe From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 220 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (14 years 4 months 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2605 times:

ATL uses the inner runways (26L/8R and 27R/9L) for takeoff and the outer runways (26R/8L and 27L/9R) for landing. It works well, we have some of the countrys best controllers working here.

User currently offlineMr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2787 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (14 years 4 months 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2598 times:

Hi guys.

Here's 2 photos of ATL & DFW. They might help guys visualize the question. Unfortunately the DFW photo isn't the greatest, but it's the best I could find. Just my 2 cents worth.

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Thomas D. Mayes, Jr.

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Dean Straw

Chris  Smile

"Just a minute while I re-invent myself"
User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (14 years 4 months 2 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 2586 times:

It may be easier to visualize this way...



Anyplace that uses parallel runways almost always uses the inboard one (closest to the terminals) primarily for departures, and the outboard runway primarily for arrivals. Doing it this way allows departing aircraft to make it to the takeoff runway without having to cross the landing runway, and lessens collision risks.

Using the outboards for landing also allows ATC to "load up" taxiways downfield with freshly landed aircraft that need to get across the inboard aircraft to the terminal areas. Once an aircraft takes off from an inboard runway, it's not unusual to see ATC then clear multiple aircraft to cross the inboard runway to the gate area.

Using both parallel runways for departures (when needed) can certainly be accomplished. Depending upon the facility, they may stagger the departures so they're not "wingtip-to-wingtip", or in the case of SFO 01R and 01L, do just that. It's quite impressive to see this at SFO, and obviously they give the 01R departure a right turn once airborne, and the 01L left departure a left turn, so that their respective paths diverge.

User currently offlineWilliam From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 1680 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (14 years 4 months 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2568 times:

I know that the standard procedure is to use the outer runways for landing and inner for takeoff. But what makes DFW so unique is that as OPNLguy states,they uses both parallels for takeoffs or landings whenever the traffic load dictates it.

Now ME,I am asking if ATL ATC does the same? It would be more efficient to use all four of ATL runways for a short period of time for departures or arrivals whenever traffic load dictate it.

User currently offlineGnomon From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (14 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2474 times:

Unless they've started doing so recently, ATL never uses arr runways for departures, and vice versa, because of heavy traffic loads.

Actually, 26R/08L and 27L/09R are noise-sensitive. Therefore, no aircraft can depart from either of those runways.

On the flipside, in times of light traffic, they sometimes clear arrivals to land on the departure runways 26L/08R and 27R/09L, provided that there aren't any departures waiting. Emergencies and flights requiring priority handling also get to land on the inboards.

User currently offlineWill_ATL From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 41 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2430 times:

It would seem like traffic spacing would become a problem with departures on 4 parallels at the same time. And approaches on 4 at the same time would seem kind of scary.

User currently offlineStormin From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 60 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (14 years 4 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 2393 times:

Having lived in Dallas and now living in ATL, some observations... The ATL runways appear to be much closer together than they are at DFW. Preventing two planes from landing on the same side of the airport at once. I have landed at DFW three planes abreast. Looking out the window and seeing two more planes landing with you really is a pretty cool thing to see. The travel time from the outmost runway to the terminal on the other hand is not pretty.  Smile The DFW airport is much more spread out than in ATL, giving the tower many more options in how handle peak traffic. When the political corruption surrounding the proposed 5th runway in ATL gets sorted out, it will be nice to see three-wide takeoffs or landings there as well.


User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 51
Reply 8, posted (14 years 4 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 2377 times:

PHL uses a parallel runway system and the inboard runway is the one used for landing typically and the outboard one is used for takeoffs, however, I believe this is done to reduce taxi times....


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