Max Q
Posts: 7921
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 12:40 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:59 am

On the 727 and MD 80 we always used to roll forward a little prior to starting the powerback.

Helped to overcome rolling resistance, much easier and used less power than starting to reverse from a dead stop.

Incidentally, we always had a guideman in front and a wingwalker on either side.
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
pilotboi
Posts: 711
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:16 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 6:10 am

Quoting FlyDeltaJets87 (Reply 43):
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.

That's another reason why I can't see this system being out there or practical.
 
QFA380
Posts: 2013
Joined: Fri Jul 22, 2005 4:38 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 6:59 am

Quoting Wjv04 (Reply 28):
Whats wrong with the current pushback system?

If a number of tugs are broken, during heavy delays or peak hours, one could find oneself waiting some time for a tug. Also you have the number of people needed for pushback. You might need someone driving the tug and 2 or 3 wing walkers, when you could have someone in an office somewhere with lots of screens who could just push each plane back without having to run around to other planes.

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?



Quoting FlyDeltaJets87 (Reply 43):
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.

What if before the plane pulled into the gate, it connected to the machine, so the machine pulled in the plane and got it right in the middle. Then instead of worrying about pulling in nice and slowly, the pilots could begin shutdown procedures before the plane even stopped. They leave earlier, you don't need a marshaller to bring the plane in and if the aircraft is delayed for whatever reason you don't have to worry about connecting the thing before it leaves.

The pilots would just have to be in the centreline when the machine is connected, which isn't really that hard, and physics will do the rest, the plane will park exactly where it needs to.
 
jimbobjoe
Posts: 465
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:08 am

Some of the responses here imply that only some aircraft can do a powerback. Why can't all?
 
goldorak
Posts: 1460
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:13 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 Ncelhr (Reply 33):
Also in use by AF at ORY. Can handle A318, A319, A320 & A321.



Quoting GeorgeJetson (Reply 48):
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

used at MPL also
 
flymad
Posts: 101
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 10:42 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:16 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.

Have seen it in use at JNB with one of the LCC's - Can't remember which one though.
 
flymad
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:24 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.

Feel free to correct me if I am wrong, but did Air Floirda 90 (B737) not "reverse" away from the gate as well? I think it was one of the contributing causes of the crash .Or am I getting confused with another incident?
 
platinumfoota
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:35 am

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 52):
Also you have the number of people needed for pushback. You might need someone driving the tug and 2 or 3 wing walkers, when you could have someone in an office somewhere with lots of screens who could just push each plane back without having to run around to other planes.

UA only uses 2 people for pushbacks, a driver and one wingwalker. With lots of traffic on the ramp i think it would be safer to have a person who is actually present in the area to react to any emergency. Trust me it happens.
Never forget United 93
 
GeorgeJetson
Posts: 126
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 1:36 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:51 am

Quoting Goldorak (Reply 54):
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 Ncelhr (Reply 33):
Also in use by AF at ORY. Can handle A318, A319, A320 & A321.



Quoting GeorgeJetson (Reply 48):
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

used at MPL also

What's really unusual is that they use these "contraptions" on one side only.
Meet George Jetson
 
RebelDJ
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 3:27 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:57 am

Quoting Wjv04 (Reply 28):
Whats wrong with the current pushback system?

Nose landing gears can be damaged by tugs - either with or without towbars.

Towbars are meant to have a mechanical fuse that will break before the gear, but these are pieces of ground equipment and are sometimes subject to abuse which renders the fuse useless.
Towbar less tractors also require limits to be set according to the aircraft type being towed - and obvious human errors can play a part here.

It doesn't happen often, but it is a risk.

If anyone can link to some pictures of these other systems, I would be very interested.
 
pilotboi
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 8:15 am

Wow, where to start...

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 52):
What if before the plane pulled into the gate, it connected to the machine, so the machine pulled in the plane and got it right in the middle.

Great idea! Now that's starting to sound more practical. But I'm sure it's a lot more complicated then we make it sound.

Quoting Jimbobjoe (Reply 53):
Some of the responses here imply that only some aircraft can do a powerback. Why can't all?

I believe wing-mounted-engine aircraft are less common to use a powerback. At first I wanted to say it was because of FOD, but that would mean they shouldn't taxi at all. But I think it may be related to that. Perhaps because low engines's reverse thrust could kick around more FOD then tail-mounted engines, leading to possible damage.

Quoting Platinumfoota (Reply 57):
UA only uses 2 people for pushbacks, a driver and one wingwalker.

Well that's practically as good as having no wingwalkers at all, especially at a busy airport.

Quoting RebelDJ (Reply 59):
It doesn't happen often, but it is a risk.

And when it does happen - it costs the company a lot of money.

Quoting RebelDJ (Reply 59):
If anyone can link to some pictures of these other systems, I would be very interested.

Yes, that would be great! I've been waiting this whole time for someone to barge in and show us some of this stuff!
 
speedbird2263
Posts: 180
Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:07 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 8:58 am

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 42):
I've done something similar. With a MIG 21.

Well to be quite frank I do it all the time with a C172.... But anything over 3000lbs I havnt tried....yet....  silly .
Straight'n Up 'N Fly Right Son
 
planesavvy
Posts: 44
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 10:13 am

As a pushback driver myself, I think we can just keep the system we have! Don't want to lose my cushy job!

At London City Airport along their long narrow terminal they don't use pushback tugs. All the aircraft , admittedly jet regional jets and turboprops, all swing around and face outwards.

If Richard Branson gets his way, we won't just pushback the aircraft, we will have to tow them down to the end of the runway as well.
 
EGCC777LR
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 10:41 am

Flown On B704,722,732/3/4/7/8/9,744,752,762/3/4,772,77W,A319,A320,A321,A330,A388,L1011,F-50,BAE146,CRJ100, Dash-8. Left
 
PaxBCN
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:48 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 11:30 am

Weel, here in BCN we have both, tug push-backs and those you can see in the picture

D-AIRX, A321, Lufthansa
 
Greg76
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 8:37 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 11:30 am

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

Just about everyone makes a U-Turn at LBB.... no need really to have a tug with as much space as they have
 
BHXFAOTIPYYC
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 11:59 am

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

Nor Iberia (Air Nostrum) apparently !
Breakfast in BHX, lunch in FAO, dinner in TIP, baggage in YYC.
 
NwAflyer07
Posts: 139
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 3:00 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:30 pm

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

Thats incredible haha. I'd love to see them try on a 757 or A320. lol
 
mcr
Posts: 76
Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2005 12:37 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 1:55 pm

It's not exactly a "Pushback" but I like the system used at London City - planes arriving at the stands do a full turn before coming to a stop, so they're parked at an angle with their tails to the boarding gates. When it's time to depart they do so under their own power. Might be trickier with a B747 or a A380, but it's amazing how little space a BAe146 or F50 needs to use to turn around.  Smile
 
Aircellist
Posts: 1536
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 8:43 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:18 pm

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

?!?! could hardly believe my eyes!!!

Now, I know that this airport IS NOT A380 ready  Wink
"When I find out I was wrong, I change my mind. What do you do?" -attributed to John Maynard Keynes
 
jbguller
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2005 5:27 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:40 pm

Quoting Aircellist (Reply 69):
Now, I know that this airport IS NOT A380 ready

It is - they just get more crew to help out!  Silly
 
pilotboi
Posts: 711
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:16 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 2:45 pm

Quoting PaxBCN (Reply 64):
Weel, here in BCN we have both, tug push-backs and those you can see in the picture

That thing looks like a drag racer!  Silly
 
ncelhr
Posts: 258
Joined: Tue Jul 04, 2006 10:53 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:05 pm

Quoting Platinumfoota (Reply 57):
UA only uses 2 people for pushbacks, a driver and one wingwalker.

The system used by AF involves only 1 operator. No wing-walker. The mini-tug is electric-powered and clamps to one of the main gears.

Quoting Pnwtraveler (Reply 36):
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.

Indeed, Richard Branson is even talking of having its aircraft towed all the way to the runway, with engines off, at LHR.
 
FlyDeltaJets87
Posts: 4479
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:31 pm

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 52):
What if before the plane pulled into the gate, it connected to the machine, so the machine pulled in the plane and got it right in the middle. Then instead of worrying about pulling in nice and slowly, the pilots could begin shutdown procedures before the plane even stopped. They leave earlier, you don't need a marshaller to bring the plane in and if the aircraft is delayed for whatever reason you don't have to worry about connecting the thing before it leaves.

The pilots would just have to be in the centreline when the machine is connected, which isn't really that hard, and physics will do the rest, the plane will park exactly where it needs to.

Sounds complicated to save 15 to 30 seconds at most, and even then, more care and precision (and thus, time) would be required to perfectly align with the towing system. Even aircraft carriers, where the pilots have to do this to align with the catapult, there is still a marshaller, telling them left or right, when to stop, etc. If the aircraft had a nosewheel camera, it would be easy enough, but most aircraft don't.
And then if the plane was even slightly misaligned at the beginning of pushback, it would be disasterous.

Then again, I guess they could use a guide rail similar to what cars use at car-washers- a V that is significantly wider than the tire at the entrance and if the wheels are not aligned with the center, they are pushed in by the guiderail to align with the system that moves the car through the car wash. Don't know how harsh that would be on aircraft landing gear though. This system would still require an operator though, just as a tug requires an operator, should there need to be an emergency stop during pushback.
"Let's Roll"- Todd Beamer, United Airlines Flight 93, Sept. 11, 2001
 
Tristarsteve
Posts: 3631
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:04 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:56 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Thread starter):
Ithink it is in Europe somewhere, but does anyone have any idea what airport has the pushback system which uses no tugs?



Quoting JetMech (Reply 45):
Ithink that there was such a system at Stockholm Arlanda . Apparently, all the devices required to serve an aircraft were mounted in boxes that could retract into the ground.

You are correct. At Stockholm ARN T2 there are a lot of underground systems. The Terminal was built with the intention that no vehicles would be used on the ramp. On gate 67 we have an underground hydrant dispenser. It lifts itself out of the ground and takes the place of a vehicle. It is not used at present.
But on gate 62 (outside my office) is a tugless pushback system. There is a metal rail down the centreline, and the device is housed underground. It rises up in its box, drives fwd along the rail, attaches to the nosegear, and pushes the aircraft back. It is also not in use, and I have never seen it used.
On every gate we have underground FEP and air-conditioning, potable water and an engine starter system which uses a huge tank of compressed air. A lot of the equipment is not used any longer, and the airport does not maintain it very well and only the FEP is serviceable on every gate.
When the terminal was built there were also baggage conveyors that rolled out to the cargo doors, so no baggage trolleys were needed.
The terminal was built for SAS, but after a few months they moved out and there has been a long running dispute about who owns and pays for the equipment.
The designers of LHR T5 came over to see it, and they were very impressed, but basically most of the gear is just too expensive to be of any benefit.
When ARN T5 pier F was built 10 years later, they installed FEP and air conditioning underground only. There are some unused hatches in the floor, but have not been connected up yet.
On T2 the equipment rises up out of the ground with hydraulic rams, but on T5 they are ordinary boxes which you lift the lid.
It is quite a sight watching a B757 being started. There is no noise at all from the FEP or the jet starter. You press a button and the starter box rises out of the ground. Connect up a single hose, then press the valve open button, and 40psi air is delivered to the aircraft silently. Always getting calls on the headset from the crew asking why they can't hear the jet starter roaring away!!

I just wish I had seen the pushback device in use, but I have talked to people who have seen it.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:32 pm

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.

I have been on an MD-80 and a DC-9 that have done a "power-back." The downside is that any loose debris lying around can get blown all over the place.
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
-Carl Sagan
 
PC12Fan
Topic Author
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 11:50 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:37 pm

Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 74):

Thanks for that post. Any idea of the company that installed these or where some pics/illustrations can be found?
Just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talkin'!
 
Tristarsteve
Posts: 3631
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:04 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:41 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 76):
Thanks for that post. Any idea of the company that installed these or where some pics/illustrations can be found?

I will try and find out, but I am off work yntil Sat. Will try then
 
PC12Fan
Topic Author
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 11:50 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:48 pm

Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 77):

That would be appreciated.

I found something about Arlanda that I did not realize - it's an alternate landing site for the Space Shuttle!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arlanda_airport
Just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talkin'!
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 14176
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 6:11 pm

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 27):
Ah, yes! NW has done that (Do they still?) on their D9's at DTW and MSP.

NW did it quite extensively at all three hubs until a couple of years ago. IIRC, they could do it at just about any gate at DTW (though -9s park exclusively on odd A gates unless there are serious IROPS). At MEM, it was only done on the B gates that faced out (B28-B40 even), and at MSP, it was done at just about any C gate and maybe G and even Fs when -9s were parked there as well (most of my NW flying is through DTW and MEM, so my memory of MSP is a little hazier).
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
Tristarsteve
Posts: 3631
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:04 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:22 pm

And here it is
http://www.fmt.se/index.php?id=36
This is T2 at ARN as it was built about 15 years ago. You can see the fuel dispenser and the push back machine


http://www.fmt.se/index.php?id=37

One box supplies conditioned air, one engine start air, and one toilet service.
You can see the fuel dispenser in the background.

We still use the FEP and conditioned air every day, the rest is slowly falling into disrepair, as the airport does not seem to maintain them properly.
 
extspotter
Posts: 617
Joined: Wed May 30, 2007 12:45 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Wed Nov 07, 2007 7:34 pm

In Valladolid (VLL), the planes turn to face outwards and do not use pushback tugs. The biggest thing you will get there though are FR 738s along with IB Q300s, CRJs and LagunAir ERJs.
AF BE BY FR MV PD SZ U2 VZ DHC6, 8-3/4Q, 732/8, 763ER, A319, A380
 
Super80DFW
Posts: 862
Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2007 10:03 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 1:23 am

Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 27):
Ah, yes! NW has done that (Do they still?) on their D9's at DTW and MSP.

Yes. Look at Reply 44.
EAT'EM UP EAT'EM UP KSU!!
 
tdscanuck
Posts: 8572
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:25 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 4:30 am

Quoting Jimbobjoe (Reply 53):
Some of the responses here imply that only some aircraft can do a powerback. Why can't all?

All aircraft with reversers can do a powerback. Most are not certified to do it, hence don't.

In all cases, you have the possibility of kicking up FOD right next to a building, which isn't a very good idea. However, on low-wing airplanes, the much bigger issue is that on a powerback your speed is negligible so the exhaust plume ends up in front of the engine and gets sucked back in again. This is a very good way to stall the compressor.

Tom.
 
AirframeAS
Posts: 9811
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:56 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 11:52 am

Quoting Super80DFW (Reply 82):
Quoting AirframeAS (Reply 27):
Ah, yes! NW has done that (Do they still?) on their D9's at DTW and MSP.

Yes. Look at Reply 44.

Uhmm, I wrote that BEFORE reply, 44, Super80DFW. Thanks though, I do really appreciate it. I CAN actually read. On that note, thanks for posting the video.
A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
 
PC12Fan
Topic Author
Posts: 2123
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 11:50 pm

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 2:33 pm

Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 80):

Yep, that's the one! Thanks Tristar!
Just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talkin'!
 
mcamargo
Posts: 82
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 8:46 am

RE: Airport With Tugless Pushback System?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 3:46 pm

APN in the US doesn't use a tug...
...then again, they don't have a jetway either  Smile and only get NW Saabs
I live for the day mainline returns to BRO...

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