PC12Fan
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Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 4:00 pm

I think it is in Europe somewhere, but does anyone have any idea what airport has the pushback system which uses no tugs?
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B6JFKH81
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 4:13 pm

Wow...I haven't heard of this. What type of system is this? Are the a/c just using r/t to back out of a gate or is there actually some type of computerized/mechanical system? This is definitely getting me interested!!!  bouncy 
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PlymSpotter
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 4:18 pm

I have heard of the possibility of integrating an electronic motor within the nose gear to push back the plane, but not heard of an airport having a system - I presume it wold need to be like some form of Scalextric track set into the ground.


Dan Smile
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scouseflyer
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 4:27 pm

Perhaps a giant conveyor belt that moves the whole plane backwards? Big grin
 
PC12Fan
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:03 pm

It's a permanent systems that, IIRC, uses a cradle mechanism similar to the towbarless tugs that are out there. All there is, is the cradle and it is on a rail of some sort as if it were the jayline. An operator activates the cradle and the aircraft is pushed straight back. When I first saw this technology, it was paired along with other technology that retract into the ramp when not in use.

http://www.cavotec.com/corporate/fla.../airports/78/underfloor-solutions/
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PlymSpotter
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:13 pm

Quoting Scouseflyer (Reply 3):
http://www.cavotec.com/corporate/fla.../airports/78/underfloor-solutions/

That link leads to this;

"To keep the tarmac apron completely free for service traffic and to reduce turn-around time for aircraft, Cavotec Fladung has designed a fully integrated ground support system. This system is installed into the tarmac itself and is accessed through pop-up or hatch-type pits that are located close to the aircraft.

Once servicing is completed these pits can be retracted to close flush with the tarmac. Leaving it free for the aircraft to manoeuvre and other essential airport traffic to approach."

That just refers to the services, such as power and air conditioning etc... whilst the aircraft is shut down at the gate. It look like FRA to me, but I don't see anything on the site about tug-less pushback. Do you have any more links, as I'm interested to hear of this method?


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PC12Fan
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:32 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 5):

Yea, sorry for the confusion. Like I said, when i first saw this story of the pushback system, they were also talking about the in ground ground support systems. I don't believe it was the same company. I saw this story a few years back.
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n710ps
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:34 pm

Every major airport in the world has one. You pull the jetbridge back, start both at the gate than make a sharp 90-180 degree turn and call ground for taxi. How is that for taking the tug out of the equation?  Wink We do it alot at airports in the south. It is easier than a pushback.
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runway23
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:35 pm

Air France use that system in Nice. Normally the pushback is attached to one of the central landing gears and remote controlled. Quite neat yet strange to see. Haven't seen it in any other airport yet.
 
stylo777
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:36 pm

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 5):

That just refers to the services, such as power and air conditioning etc... whilst the aircraft is shut down at the gate. It look like FRA to me, but I don't see anything on the site about tug-less pushback. Do you have any more links, as I'm interested to hear of this method?

no, I suppose it is MUC, because here in FRA we don't have this system installed and I never saw an Emirates hangar. In FRA we only have a bunch of towbarless tugs which also could handle the A380.
 
PC12Fan
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:41 pm

Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):

Yes, very similar to that, the one I saw was attached to the nose gear though.
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Jerald01
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:43 pm

Talk to the U.S. Navy. They have a fair amount of exeperience with something like this. Of course you may want to check to insure your local airport has enough room BEHIND the aircraft to stop once the catapult does it's job....

 Wink
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PlymSpotter
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:44 pm

Quoting Stylo777 (Reply 9):
no, I suppose it is MUC, because here in FRA we don't have this system installed and I never saw an Emirates hangar. In FRA we only have a bunch of towbarless tugs which also could handle the A380.

Cheers for the correction - I saw an LH widebody which looked like a 744, so I was presuming it was FRA  Smile
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sandrozrh
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:48 pm

Doesn't CDG have some sort of tugless pushback system? At least at some of the Terminal 2 piers. Although, to be fair, they have some sort of mini-tug connected to one of the main landing gears, but there's no driver and either the pilot steers himself, or the system has a pre-programmed pushback route, depending on the A/C type connected.

Is that what the OP was thinking of?

[Edited 2007-11-06 10:50:41]
 
PC12Fan
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:58 pm

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 13):
Is that what the OP was thinking of?

For the lack of a better description, yes, it was a "mini tug" of some sort and this may very well be what I saw. Again, the system I saw was hooked up to the nose gerar and I think it was an MD-80 series.
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wjcandee
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 7:34 pm

A track in the ground would mean that the whole gate goes out of service when the "tug" goes down. Which it will. Not a good setup.
 
sandrozrh
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 7:39 pm

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 15):
A track in the ground would mean that the whole gate goes out of service when the "tug" goes down. Which it will. Not a good setup.

Not necessarily. Depending on the construction of the system, a normal pushback tug could still be used when/if the system craps down.
 
pilotboi
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 9:27 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 4):
An operator activates the cradle and the aircraft is pushed straight back.



Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 10):
Yes, very similar to that, the one I saw was attached to the nose gear though.

In order for this to work, the aircraft would have to be exactly centered on the line, meaning the whole body. Otherwise, if the mains were just a few inches off, the aircraft would start turning right away. Also, for these "track" systems to work, wouldn't there be large gaps in the ramp where the track runs?
 
Doona
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 9:29 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 14):
I think it was an MD-80 series.

On a side note: I heard somewhere that the DC-9 and MD-80 series, as well as the 717, are able to "pull" (not push) themselves back from the gate using reverse thrust.

Cheers
Mats
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PC12Fan
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 9:39 pm

Quoting Pilotboi (Reply 17):
In order for this to work, the aircraft would have to be exactly centered on the line, meaning the whole body. Otherwise, if the mains were just a few inches off, the aircraft would start turning right away. Also, for these "track" systems to work, wouldn't there be large gaps in the ramp where the track runs?

The one that I remember had a small gap of only a couple inches max running along the jay line. I believe all of the components outside of the cradle were underground.

Quoting Doona (Reply 18):
On a side note: I heard somewhere that the DC-9 and MD-80 series, as well as the 717, are able to "pull" (not push) themselves back from the gate using reverse thrust.

Cheers
Mats

They can, but not recommended for FOD issues.
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iahflyer
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:04 pm

@ LBB, WN used to just make a U-turn.
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ikramerica
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:20 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 19):
They can, but not recommended for FOD issues.

AA used to do it on MD80s at DFW. It was always interesting to be on one that did that. The airport has to be designed to handle the thrust on the glass and the ground equipment has to be out of the way. The MD80s are long enough and the engines far back enough it makes it less of an issue.

But in these high fuel cost times, don't expect it to be used any time soon no matter how well the airport could deal with it.
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richm
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Tue Nov 06, 2007 11:58 pm

Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

 
pilotboi
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:03 am

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

That's the most awesome ground video I've ever seen!!  rotfl 
 
ikramerica
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:06 am

Quoting IAHFLYER (Reply 20):
@ LBB, WN used to just make a U-turn.

At gates B11 and B14 at SRQ, they just pull the jetway away and you turn a bit and drive off. At gate B12 it depends on the aircraft.
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swissy
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:13 am

Quoting Doona (Reply 18):
On a side note: I heard somewhere that the DC-9 and MD-80 series, as well as the 717, are able to "pull" (not push) themselves back from the gate using reverse thrust.

Yep, also the 727 can do it, nothing beats a "power back".................. Big grin, all they need is some outside mirrors.....


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PIA777
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:13 am

I have only seen it on Airtran 717s at ATL. I was on their flight twice when that happened.

PIA777
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AirframeAS
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:14 am

Quoting Doona (Reply 18):
On a side note: I heard somewhere that the DC-9 and MD-80 series, as well as the 717, are able to "pull" (not push) themselves back from the gate using reverse thrust.

Ah, yes! NW has done that (Do they still?) on their D9's at DTW and MSP. I have been on one D9 (MSP-DLH) in 1999 that did a powerback and it was awesome! The whole plane was shaking, it was so cool!

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):

That.......is........AWESOME!  bouncy 
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wjv04
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:19 am

Whats wrong with the current pushback system?
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:27 am

Quoting Doona (Reply 18):
On a side note: I heard somewhere that the DC-9 and MD-80 series, as well as the 717, are able to "pull" (not push) themselves back from the gate using reverse thrust.

yes, powerbacks is what i hear them called, the dc's md, or 717 are capable of powering back in permitable conditions, using reverse thrust.
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JetBlueGuy2006
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:30 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 24):
they just pull the jetway away and you turn a bit and drive off

Yeah, Allegiant does this in Lansing. Gate 9 is on the corner, so they don't pull in as far as say a NW DC-9 and the jetway pulls back and a slight turn right and we were off past the rest of the terminal.
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SNAFlyboy
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 12:58 am

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

Now that's what I call a pushback!  Silly

Thanks for sharing that...

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HPAEAA
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:02 am

G19 at ORD.. the EMBs can taxi under power out to the taxi ways.. without a push back.. however, I have found this dangerous, I had atleast two pilots under my tenure in ramp control that almost taxied right into another plane (they never called for permission)....
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ncelhr
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:13 am

Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):
Air France use that system in Nice. Normally the pushback is attached to one of the central landing gears and remote controlled. Quite neat yet strange to see. Haven't seen it in any other airport yet.



Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 13):
Doesn't CDG have some sort of tugless pushback system? At least at some of the Terminal 2 piers. Although, to be fair, they have some sort of mini-tug connected to one of the main landing gears, but there's no driver and either the pilot steers himself, or the system has a pre-programmed pushback route, depending on the A/C type connected.

You are indeed both talking about the same system.
Also in use by AF at ORY. Can handle A318, A319, A320 & A321.

It requires less personnel & is faster to couple/uncouple than a towbar tug. I have never seen it on something larger than an A321.
 
georgebush
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:35 am

Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):
Air France use that system in Nice. Normally the pushback is attached to one of the central landing gears and remote controlled. Quite neat yet strange to see. Haven't seen it in any other airport yet.

NZ also uses this system in WLG. I don't know for sure about any other airports, but the pushback is done by one guy with a tuggish looking thing attached to the left main gear on the 733's and 320's. The guy operating the push back walks in front of the a/c with the ground - flight deck communication. He then operates the "tuggish" machine (please let me know if you know the official term for what I am talking about) via remote control and the a/c is push straight back. He then disconnects the mechanism via remote control, and it drives itself back to the ramp at the gate. I thought I was trippin' the first time I saw this done. Definitely very innovative.
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JAGflyer
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:38 am

I don't know what it's called but I like the system ANA uses for their 747s. Not only does it push them back, it gets them to dance around as well. Pretty cool IMO.

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pnwtraveler
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:41 am

I remember standing on the top floor of the parking garage on top of Terminal One at YYZ and watching an AC DC9 doing the reverse thrust back up. I also saw a 727 do the same thing but only once. They were evaluating the costs compared to using tugs. These days with the cost of fuel i would think it must be an expensive way to move the plane even if it saves time.
 
georgebush
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:44 am

Quoting Pnwtraveler (Reply 36):
I remember standing on the top floor of the parking garage on top of Terminal One at YYZ and watching an AC DC9 doing the reverse thrust back up.

That is awesome! When I worked for G4, I pursuaded the captain to do a full reverse thrust pushback when I was on board. It was brilliant. Captain comes on: "ladies and gentleman, in a few minutes we will be pulling away from the gate. Just a heads up that it might be a bit lound and you will feel some slight vibrations." You just see everyone gripping their armrests.
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EI747SYDNEY
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:45 am

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

Surely this is a one off.

Rob  Smile
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vheca
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:49 am

Quoting Ncelhr (Reply 33):
Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):
Air France use that system in Nice. Normally the pushback is attached to one of the central landing gears and remote controlled. Quite neat yet strange to see. Haven't seen it in any other airport yet.



Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 13):
Doesn't CDG have some sort of tugless pushback system? At least at some of the Terminal 2 piers. Although, to be fair, they have some sort of mini-tug connected to one of the main landing gears, but there's no driver and either the pilot steers himself, or the system has a pre-programmed pushback route, depending on the A/C type connected.

You are indeed both talking about the same system.
Also in use by AF at ORY. Can handle A318, A319, A320 & A321.

It requires less personnel & is faster to couple/uncouple than a towbar tug. I have never seen it on something larger than an A321.

I have seen these "tugs" used at YMML. DJ uses them. They look like low forklifts and attch themselves to one of the main landing gear. The operator, usually the aircraft handler is connected with a very long cable and still remains in the view of the pilot. Once the plane is in place, the tug seems to "race off"and away from the aircraft so it is able to turn and proceed with it's taxiing.

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speedbird2263
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:08 am

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

Really good vid... laughing 

Hmm....Don't think Id mind trying that  scratchchin   silly 
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platinumfoota
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:31 am

The system is just fine why change it? That and i would be out of a job!!  Silly

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers. :P

Too Funny!!  rotfl 
Ever depart out of LAX on gates 70A or 71A?? Now thats a push back!
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:48 am

Quoting Speedbird2263 (Reply 40):
Hmm....Don't think Id mind trying that

I've done something similar. With a MIG 21.
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:56 am

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 15):
A track in the ground would mean that the whole gate goes out of service when the "tug" goes down. Which it will. Not a good setup.

Or if the pilot misses the centerline when pulling in. Could be kinda' interesting, especially if the airport is completely dependent on the new system.

FL used to do at least some powerbacks at ATL back when fuel was cheap(er).

Quoting N710PS (Reply 7):
Every major airport in the world has one. You pull the jetbridge back, start both at the gate than make a sharp 90-180 degree turn and call ground for taxi. How is that for taking the tug out of the equation?

At least in 2005, that's what my 737-200 did with AQ at ITO (Hilo). They just pull the jetway all the back to the terminal, you start the engines right there, and go.
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Super80DFW
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:12 am

This might be a rare case, but I don't know.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PiRkA0xr96Y

NWA DC-9 Powerback at MSP.
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jetmech
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:21 am

Quoting PC12Fan (Thread starter):

I think that there was such a system at Stockholm Arlanda  Confused. Apparently, all the devices required to serve an aircraft were mounted in boxes that could retract into the ground.

Quoting RichM (Reply 22):
Yes, Flybe at LBA don't appear to use tugs for their Embraers.

I knew that there was a lot more money in Rugby these days, but that has got to be the most expensive scrum practising machine I have ever seen!

Regards, JetMech
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GeorgeJetson
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:18 am

Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):



Quoting Ncelhr (Reply 33):
Quoting Runway23 (Reply 8):
Air France use that system in Nice. Normally the pushback is attached to one of the central landing gears and remote controlled. Quite neat yet strange to see. Haven't seen it in any other airport yet.

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 13):
Doesn't CDG have some sort of tugless pushback system? At least at some of the Terminal 2 piers. Although, to be fair, they have some sort of mini-tug connected to one of the main landing gears, but there's no driver and either the pilot steers himself, or the system has a pre-programmed pushback route, depending on the A/C type connected.

You are indeed both talking about the same system.
Also in use by AF at ORY. Can handle A318, A319, A320 & A321.

It requires less personnel & is faster to couple/uncouple than a towbar tug. I have never seen it on something larger than an A321.

I flew on Air France last year from Paris to Nice and back and saw this system at both airports. I thought it was very unusual!
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GeorgeJetson
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:27 am

Quoting PIA777 (Reply 26):
I have only seen it on Airtran 717s at ATL. I was on their flight twice when that happened.

I have flown from Atlanta on Airtran 717s several times and they did powerbacks every time. One time, the aircraft moved forward for a split second and I became worried that it would do the same stunt as in the movie “Airplane!” and crash into the terminal! I thought that maybe the pilots forgot to put the thrust reversers on! Fortunately, the aircraft did back out (after a slight hiccup) and there were no problems.
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GeorgeJetson
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:01 am

Quoting JAGflyer (Reply 35):
I don't know what it's called but I like the system ANA uses for their 747s. Not only does it push them back, it gets them to dance around as well. Pretty cool IMO.

I just absolutely love this You Tube video with the 747s dancing to Sylvie Vartan (my favorite singer, superstar and superhero) singing Irresistiblement (Irresistibly). I saw Sylvie Vartan perform in Monte-Carlo on September 29, 2006, and even met her in person and got her autograph, too!

It was on this very same trip that I saw the funny looking gizmos that grabbed on to the main landing gear of Air France A319s, A320s and A321s on pushback at the Orly and Nice airports.

[Edited 2007-11-06 21:14:58]
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ckfred
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:30 am

Quoting GeorgeJetson (Reply 47):
I have flown from Atlanta on Airtran 717s several times and they did powerbacks every time. One time, the aircraft moved forward for a split second and I became worried that it would do the same stunt as in the movie �Airplane!� and crash into the terminal! I thought that maybe the pilots forgot to put the thrust reversers on! Fortunately, the aircraft did back out (after a slight hiccup) and there were no problems.

AA used to do powerbacks at ATL with MD-80s, F100s, and 727s. According to a friend of mine who is a pilot with AA and used to fly 727s, both as an F/E and an F/O, power is applied, so that the aircraft starts to move forward. Then, the reverser buckets are deployed to start the backing procedure.

The idea is that if the engine accidently ingested a foreign object during taxi in, applying power will normally dispel the object through the rear of the engine. If the reverser buckets are deployed before applying power, the object could damage the buckets or the engine itself.

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