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Nats Climb Clearance "Climb No Earlier"  
User currently offlinesmartt1982 From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2007, 225 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 11 months 12 hours ago) and read 2683 times:

Was flying from a destination in Ireland today and heard all the chatter between Shannon Control and the aircraft about to start the Atlantic to the States.

On two occasion I heard the controller give an aircraft a clearance of "cross Pickle (I think this is what it was) no earlier than 1648z @ FL340.

Any ideas on this, what would be the reason for an aircraft to be given a clearance of climb no earlier than a certain time etc.?

3 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineBigSaabowski From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 193 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (3 years 11 months 12 hours ago) and read 2672 times:

This was not a climb clearance but an oceanic track entry clearance. The aircraft was most likely already at FL340. This is how controllers sequence aircraft on the tracks. The next aircraft to enter the track starting at PIKIL at the same altitude, would be given a "no earlier time" of 1658z.

User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9645 posts, RR: 42
Reply 2, posted (3 years 11 months 12 hours ago) and read 2666 times:

I think the point is that they were not to enter Oceanic airspace before 1648z and that they were to be already level at FL340 prior to doing so.

Due to the lack of radar coverage, the North Atlantic movements are "choreographed" to ensure spacing. That's why they are issued fixed flight levels, Mach numbers and entry times. Being out of sight of ATC for several hours, you don't want them bunching up along the way.

Here's a starting point for further information:


User currently offlinealoges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 9428 posts, RR: 39
Reply 3, posted (3 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 2445 times:

Speaking of the NATS, is there any way to find out which Airbus overtook my flight (LH439, D-AIKI) during the night from last Sunday to Monday? The overtaking aircraft at approximately 22:05 CDT/03:05 GMT was to our right and somewhat lower, I got the idea that it was an Airbus from its strobes (double flash as opposed to a Boeing's single flash). The position was southeast of Greenland.

[Edited 2012-07-03 04:16:56]

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