Moderators: jsumali2, richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
BrunoSBGR
Topic Author
Posts: 39
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 2:05 am

Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:34 pm

Hi everyone...

I always had this doubt, and maybe somebody here can explain it to me...

Why some flight callsigns are like "Varig 8819 HEAVY" and others like "Varig 2465"?

I though the "Heavy" part was added to wide-bodied flights, operated by aircraft like 747s, DC-10s, MD-11, A340s and so forth. But I've seen that even some flights that are flown with these aircraft sometimes don't have the "Heavy" added to their callsigns.

I also though that the tag was only used for cargo flights, but again I proved me wrong.

So, is there a regulation or rule for it?

Thanks in advance,
and happy landings for all!

Bruno_SBGR
Private pilot. Frequent flyer. Aviation geek. Proud of all 3.
 
atcrick
Posts: 719
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 1:05 pm

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:39 pm

Any aircraft with a max takeoff weight of 300,000 lbs or more are considered "heavy". It also means more stringent wake turbulence and separation rules for ATC. The only aircraft that is called heavy and weighs less than 300,000 lbs is the 757 because of the strong wing tip vortices that it generates.

Rgds,

Atc RIck
natch!!
 
lsgg
Posts: 542
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:48 pm

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:41 pm

In my case, I've hardly ever heard a callsign with heavy in Switzerland or France. But I know it exist but....

Anyway I would be glad to listen more "heavy" a/c in ATC !
Swissair forever !
 
satx
Posts: 2781
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 7:26 am

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 11:36 pm

Quoting Lsgg (Reply 2):
In my case, I've hardly ever heard a callsign with heavy in Switzerland or France. But I know it exist but....

Isn't this mainly/only an FAA designation? Thus, you'll probably hear it mainly in the US.
A300 319 320 321 332 333 388 B727 732 733 735 737 738 739 742 743 744 752 753 763 764 772 77E 77L 773 77W 788 789 C200 700 900 DHC2 DC9 E145 170 175 190 F100 MD81 82 83 87 88 90 | 38 Lines 44 Craft 58 Ports
 
lsgg
Posts: 542
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:48 pm

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 11:42 pm

Quoting SATX (Reply 3):
Isn't this mainly/only an FAA designation? Thus, you'll probably hear it mainly in the US.

Probably, but it would be interesting to be sure...
Swissair forever !
 
BrunoSBGR
Topic Author
Posts: 39
Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 2:05 am

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Thu Aug 18, 2005 11:53 pm

Thanks for the answers, guys! Now I get it!

See ya,

Bruno_SBGR
Private pilot. Frequent flyer. Aviation geek. Proud of all 3.
 
skibum9
Posts: 862
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2001 1:13 pm

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Fri Aug 19, 2005 12:04 am

Quoting ATCRick (Reply 1):
Any aircraft with a max takeoff weight of 300,000 lbs or more are considered "heavy". It also means more stringent wake turbulence and separation rules for ATC. The only aircraft that is called heavy and weighs less than 300,000 lbs is the 757 because of the strong wing tip vortices that it generates.

Only the 757-300 gets the Heavy designator, the 757-200 does not.
Tailwinds!!!
 
Newark777
Posts: 8283
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 6:23 am

RE: Why Is "Heavy" Added To Some Callsigns?

Fri Aug 19, 2005 12:10 am

Not exactly right. It's 255,000 pounds, read here:

Quoting OPNLguy:
The threshold for "heavy" here in the US used to be anything -capable- of a MTOW of 300,000 lbs or more. A few years back, the threshold was changed to anything -capable- of 255,000 lbs. or more.

There are some 757-200 aircraft out there that fall -below- the 255,000 threshold, and while not "technically" heavies, they still are treated as such for separation purposes. Some 757-200s are -above- 255,000, and they and the 757-300s are all heavies by definition.

Some airlines may have mixed 757-200 fleets, with some below 255,000 and some above 255,000, and as far as I know, there's no way to tell them apart by looking at them. Accordingly, it's quite possible that sometimes pilots or controllers might say "heavy" when they shouldn't, and anyone listening in on a scanner might also get the wrong idea that -all- 757-200s are heavies...

752 (ATC Always A "Heavy" Wink (by AV8AJET Aug 18 2005 in Civil Aviation)

Harry
Why grab a Heine when you can grab a Busch?

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos