This question has to do with de-icing but not along the same line...not working in the airline industry or for an airport, I do not know what the procedures are. Example, here @ IND planes get de-iced at the gate and then have the longest taxi in the world it seems for take-off. However, then @ DTW you leave the gate and go to a "de-icing pad" very close to the runway right before take-off, this seems much safer to me than what is done @ IND. What are the rules in regards to de-icing? Is it determined by the pilot or airport or the weather? Thanks in advance for any responses.
Just haven gotten out of the ice bucket this morning, I'll try to tell you what I know.
Here, at BWI
has an ice pad. For major de-icing events, we do our spraying here. Four lanes, two trucks per lane; pretty much like a giant car wash. Planes taxi down off of 15R, radio our ice coordinator, get assigned a lane, an iceman instructs them of what to do (turn off packs, etc) and the start time/mixture info. They get sprayed an away they go. For minor events, or the morning de-frosting, we do our spraying at the gates. Then some airports, like PIT, have built in de-icing towers, where there are stationary towers with booms and buckets on them that the planes simply pull in between. If I recall correctly, only US usees these though.
Basically it comes down to this: it's the captain's decision. While the airline , airport or FAA (?) may declare a "de-icing event," even if there is not an official one, the pilot has the ultimate say. I guess even if it were 80 and sunny out, if the pilot wanted to be de-iced or anti-iced they would get it.
The FAA has a "clean plane" policy. Basically all of the control surfaces must be free of ice, snow or other accumulation which could negatively effect the planes performance. At BWI
, the MAA, which owns/operates the airport will call all of the tenants when they are declaring an official event, as mentioned above.
Then it gets a bit trickier. There is de-icing (Type I glycol mixed with water) and then anti-icing (Type IV
glycol, 100%). If an a/c is going to have to hold for take-off, we'll de-ice the plane and then anti-ice it. If there's no wait or it's just the morning defrost, we just de-ice. For each a/c the start time, end time, solution mixture and temperature of the solution is recorded and held for records. The FAA also spot checks on this. Depending on the weather conditions, Type IV
anti-icing glycol can remain effective for over 8 hours.
So basically, you're right on all three accounts. It is determined by the airport, pilot and the weather. It's just how you respond during the event that changes.
And yes, Type I glycol does taste like Dr. Pepper. Only really warm. (It's heated between 160 and 180 F)
Sometimes if an a/c just needs to be lightly defrosted, like our 737-700s, which tend to get condensation relatively easily on the wings from fueling, which can quickly turn to frost, they'll just be sprayed with hot water. I had this done in LAS one night. It was something to see our rampers out there not quite sure of how to use the bucket to their advantage. I guess it's something that they don't have to deal with that often, though.
[Edited 2005-02-04 22:05:23]
[Edited 2005-02-04 22:09:28]
United 717 heavy, you're facing the wrong way. Any chance you can powerback to get off of my deice pad?