Topic Author
Posts: 2196
Joined: Wed May 19, 1999 8:04 am

SJC Loop Departure

Thu Oct 02, 2003 1:12 pm

Anybody know why some departures at SJC use a loop departure? I flew out of SJC to Seattle and the AS 739 took off to the north but did a whole loop around the airport until finally heading towards Seattle. I've seen it many times also watching airport monitor. Anybody know why this pattern is at SJC? Also is there any other airports that use this look departure?
Posts: 6233
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 1999 7:43 am

RE: SJC Loupe (?) Departure

Thu Oct 02, 2003 1:23 pm

As you've probably heard it's to get the deopartures over the SFO arrivals. But then we naturally wonder why they have to get to 12000 over the VOR.

It is unusual-- a while back I asked what other airports did the same and I don't think anybody came up with another airport where departures make a 360-degree turn before crossing above the airport.
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2002 1:57 pm

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Thu Oct 02, 2003 2:09 pm

It's done to get the aircraft "up and over" the approach paths into SFO and OAK. Otherwise you'd have to coordinate (and delay) inbounds to SFO whilst the SJC flights were departing.

Topic Author
Posts: 2196
Joined: Wed May 19, 1999 8:04 am

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Thu Oct 02, 2003 3:12 pm

Thanks for the info guys. So what do they do if flights have to arrive from the north? Do they do a loop arrival?
Posts: 6233
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 1999 7:43 am

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Thu Oct 02, 2003 11:06 pm

SJC arrivals from the north use about the same route as SFO arrivals except they descend to 12000 instead of 11000. Their only conflict is the SFO arrival stream from the south, and apparently they cross beneath with no problem.
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Joined: Tue Jun 15, 1999 11:29 am

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:24 am

>>>Do they do a loop arrival?

There may be a little confusion here, as the departure procedure in question isn't a general "loop", but has a specific name (LOUPE) that -sounds- like a generalized "loop".

All airports that have these SIDs/DPs (Standard Instrument Departures/Departure Procedures) and STARs (Standard Terminal Arrival Routes) will have them constructed in such a way that accounts for the traffic flows (both in and out) of other nearby airports.
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
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Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2002 10:47 pm

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Fri Oct 03, 2003 12:53 pm

I've been on flights that did a couple of loops on departure out of SJC. On arrivals from the north (such as PDX or SEA) they generally fly over Marin and west of the Golden Gate Bridge that provides a fantastic view if you're on the left side, then down the peninsula right over SFO, then a sharp left 180 turn south of SJC over the hills, then back north to land.
Posts: 551
Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 8:38 am

RE: SJC Loop Departure

Fri Oct 03, 2003 1:40 pm

Ahhh, a topic I have pretty good knowledge of. My office is about 2 miles down the normal departure pattern for SJC and I watch the various aircraft fly by my window in my office. I also use that airport a lot when I have to travel.

There is one flight that does not follow the "loop" departure pattern. AA 129 SJC - AA), Japan">NRT, it heads straight west pretty much and then banks to the left after crossing the 237 freeway to clear SFO traffic and then off to AA), Japan">NRT.

I really like the UA terminal. It's odd, but I prefer using airstairs to board a aircraft. You get some great views of the AC that you normally don't see when using a jetway.

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