upperdeckfan
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Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:44 pm

This morning I experienced a 5-hr delay out of VLC because of lack of deicing equipment. Purpose of this thread is not to discuss why an airport which once in a while can get below freezing isn't equiped for deicing but if you want to discuss it feel free to do so.

What caught my attention is that we were flying the KL E190 on the 0600 departure and the captain said we had to wait for the ice on the wings to melt by itself, which took us until 1100 to be cleared.On the other hand, all the A320's and B738's (LH, UX, VY, FR, etc) which have stayed overnight on the tarmac left on time without having to wait for ice to melt.

Up to now I've always thought that deicing was required for all departing aircraft regardless of size/type but this morning it didn't seem to be the case. I am very curious to learn why a small a/c like the E190 had to wait and larger ones didn't have.
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Varsity1
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:49 pm

Each airline has a unique deicing program which specifies requirements when/when to not deice. The program is evaluated by the certificate authority and approved on a case by case basis. Each is different.
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jetmatt777
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:20 pm

The thicker wing of the larger narrowbody aircraft might be able to maintain a warmer temperature overnight as there is more mass there. Also, those airplanes require more fuel and it's possible when they were fueled up the net increase in temperature (by bringing warmer fuel into the wing) was enough to melt the frost on the wing. The EMB is smaller so combined with less mass to retain heat, it also likely required less fuel so had a lower benefit from warm fuel entering the wing tank.

Believe it or not, the shape of a wing can also result in differences. The air moving over the wing (from wind while parked) may not form condensation as easily on one airplane as it does another.
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MIflyer12
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:42 pm

Varsity1 wrote:
Each airline has a unique deicing program which specifies requirements when/when to not deice. The program is evaluated by the certificate authority and approved on a case by case basis. Each is different.


Is there typically a manufacturer spec for de-icing?
 
B777LRF
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:44 pm

At a guess. When your E190 landed the night before it had a fairly large amount of fuel onboard, which had been cold-soaked en route. During the night, this enabled ice to form on the wings. The other aircraft may have had less fuel onboard, and were thus less susceptible to ice build-up.

The rules are more or less the same for all well-regulated airlines, as everyone's using the same reference material. Your were unlucky to be onboard an aircraft where ice had formed on the wings, the other aircraft you so taking off must have been clear of ice.
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rampbro
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:00 pm

KL probably just made a cost/benefit decision: pay the (contract ramp handler/airport - IDK how it is at VLC) fee to de-ice, or wait for nature to take its course and deal with the IROPS fallout. I could see the cost to de-ice at an outstation like VLC being high - they probably don't stock much Type 2 and almost certainly no Type 4.
 
upperdeckfan
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 14, 2020 7:35 am

rampbro wrote:
KL probably just made a cost/benefit decision: pay the (contract ramp handler/airport - IDK how it is at VLC) fee to de-ice, or wait for nature to take its course and deal with the IROPS fallout. I could see the cost to de-ice at an outstation like VLC being high - they probably don't stock much Type 2 and almost certainly no Type 4.



As said, there is no deicing equipment in VLC of any kind/type.
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767333ER
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:14 pm

It’s only required when it’s required. Chances are the other planes just didn’t have ice on their wings.
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exFWAOONW
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:32 pm

Was this before or after sun-rise? What side of the concourse were they, the sunny or shady side, it will make a slight difference.
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upperdeckfan
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:40 pm

exFWAOONW wrote:
Was this before or after sun-rise? What side of the concourse were they, the sunny or shady side, it will make a slight difference.



0600 departure and airport layout hace most of the planes oriented north-south so sun on one wing and shadow in the other

BTW, per FR24 today's flight was delayed more than 4 tours again
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M83, M87, M88,310,319,320,321,332,
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CR7, CR9,CRK, E175,E190,ATR42,
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Flow2706
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:41 am

In general there is a clear wing policy with very few certified exceptions that have been tested and verified by the manufacturer and the authorities. For the A320 series, a thin layer of frost below the wing is allowable (it usually forms after descending from a long cruise flight - I have even seen it on the Canary Islands with 25-30C outside temperature on the ground...). I know that other types have some other exceptions, I seem to remember that the 737 has an area on the upper part of the wing where some ice accumulation is acceptable. Maybe the 737s had some ice in 'acceptable' areas, but for the EMB it was not acceptable.
As other people have said, the accumulation of ice depends on many factors, f.e. the fuel load on the last landing. On some aircraft types fuel pumps are generating some heat which helps the ice to melt. On the A320 it can be helpful to turn the pumps back on just after arriving to increase the melting (it's not an official procedure, but as it's not contrary to any official procedure either it is a useful trick). Maybe the fuel pumps on the EMB are not generating so much heat or are located in an other position relative to the fuel tank/wings surface.
 
Tristarsteve
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:27 pm

I used to work at Stockholm Arlanda for British Airways and have supervised the deicing of hundreds of aircraft.
The fuel price at ARN was higher than LHR for BA, so the flight plan suggested to the crew that it was a good idea to tanker fuel into ARN. Sometimes the flight dispatcher would put the extra fuel on himself. We noticed that during the winter, aircraft arriving with extra fuel formed frost on the upper wing so that deicing was required. Aircraft arriving with minimum fuel did not. On the aircraft with minimum fuel, the fuel was not touching the upper surface of the wing, except in the collector tank area. On the A320, the outboard fuel had transferred inboard.
We talked to flight dispatch and agreed that extra fuel would not be planned if the OAT was below 10degC. I reckon that this worked very well, and really saved us money. The money saving by tankering fuel was around 20 USD, and the cost of deicing around 500 USD.
On the A320/B734 the figure for remaing fuel was around 3500Kg to stop the frost forming on the upper surface. (Our diversion was far away)
We also used less fuel and less deicing fluid. In today's Greta world that would be obvious, but 20 years ago it was a fight. Every couple of years a new entrant in operations would be tasked to save money, and start tankering fuel again!
 
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:16 pm

B777LRF wrote:
At a guess. When your E190 landed the night before it had a fairly large amount of fuel onboard, which had been cold-soaked en route. During the night, this enabled ice to form on the wings. The other aircraft may have had less fuel onboard, and were thus less susceptible to ice build-up.

The rules are more or less the same for all well-regulated airlines, as everyone's using the same reference material. Your were unlucky to be onboard an aircraft where ice had formed on the wings, the other aircraft you so taking off must have been clear of ice.


I was thinking the same. Could also be related to refueling in the evening vs morning, the contents of the fuel truck or underground pipe system being just warm enough to defrost the wing. Time of arrival could factor in as well, if the others arrived before the temperature dropped below zero.
 
Sokes
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:55 am

Does the ice form during descend or on the ground?
If ice on the wings forms during descend, shouldn't it also form during climb? Why is this no problem?
Is fuel in winter heated before it's filled in the plane?
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zanl188
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:16 am

Sokes wrote:
Does the ice form during descend or on the ground?
If ice on the wings forms during descend, shouldn't it also form during climb? Why is this no problem?
Is fuel in winter heated before it's filled in the plane?


Typically the anti-ice systems will be operating in flight and no ice will form.
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Sokes
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:56 am

zanl188 wrote:

Typically the anti-ice systems will be operating in flight and no ice will form.


I assume air has to pass over the wing which is why they can't be used on the ground?
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Tristarsteve
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:00 pm

Sokes wrote:
Does the ice form during descend or on the ground?
If ice on the wings forms during descend, shouldn't it also form during climb? Why is this no problem?
Is fuel in winter heated before it's filled in the plane?


The frost on fuel tanks forms on jet airliners on the ground when the moisture in the air has a chance to settle on the wing and stick. In flight it passes over the wing too fast to cause much damage. Except on slow propellor aircraft which can have problems in icy weather.

The fuel is not heated. It might be a good idea to warm the fuel slightly, but hot fuel is less dense than cold fuel, so you get less energy per litre. Fuel is bought by the litre so cold fuel is cheaper than hot fuel as less litres are required per kilo.
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:23 am

Sokes wrote:
zanl188 wrote:

Typically the anti-ice systems will be operating in flight and no ice will form.


I assume air has to pass over the wing which is why they can't be used on the ground?


All Bombardier types use anti-icing systems in the ground subject to AFM limitations and procedures.
 
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 22, 2020 1:57 am

zanl188 wrote:
Sokes wrote:
Does the ice form during descend or on the ground?
If ice on the wings forms during descend, shouldn't it also form during climb? Why is this no problem?
Is fuel in winter heated before it's filled in the plane?


Typically the anti-ice systems will be operating in flight and no ice will form.


Type dependent, but typically they will not. We only use wing anti-ice in case of severe icing conditions. I've never seen it used. Engine anti-ice goes on pretty frequently, but this won't affect frost formation from cold soaked fuel.

As Tristarsteve says, in-flight the air is typically going by too fast for moisture to stick. At least in jets.
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fr8mech
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Wed Jan 22, 2020 4:41 am

zanl188 wrote:
Typically the anti-ice systems will be operating in flight and no ice will form.


Wing anti-ice only addresses the leading edge.
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Sokes
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Fri Jan 24, 2020 6:46 am

Starlionblue wrote:
We only use wing anti-ice in case of severe icing conditions. I've never seen it used. Engine anti-ice goes on pretty frequently, but this won't affect frost formation from cold soaked fuel.

As Tristarsteve says, in-flight the air is typically going by too fast for moisture to stick. At least in jets.


Interesting that ice easily forms on the engine intake, but rare on the leading edge and not at all at the wing behind the leading edge.

I found a nice video for fellow enthusiasts:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7R0wzM2y6M
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CALTECH
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sat Jan 25, 2020 2:07 pm

Tristarsteve wrote:
Sokes wrote:
Does the ice form during descend or on the ground?
If ice on the wings forms during descend, shouldn't it also form during climb? Why is this no problem?
Is fuel in winter heated before it's filled in the plane?


The frost on fuel tanks forms on jet airliners on the ground when the moisture in the air has a chance to settle on the wing and stick. In flight it passes over the wing too fast to cause much damage. Except on slow propellor aircraft which can have problems in icy weather.

The fuel is not heated. It might be a good idea to warm the fuel slightly, but hot fuel is less dense than cold fuel, so you get less energy per litre. Fuel is bought by the litre so cold fuel is cheaper than hot fuel as less litres are required per kilo.


Remember the MD-80/ -90 aircraft could create ice from just high humidity on the ground, and it was hard to see clear ice type. IIRC, we had a few create ice on that upper wing over the gulf coming into MCO when MCO's temp was below 50', very rare, but it got that low for MCO. We waited for the giant fireball in the sky to do it's thing, but a few times we hit it with the H2O service hose until the wing was clear. We did get a 5 gallon sprayer filled with de-icing fluid, but the H2O hose was more effective. A few times ice formed on the bottom of the wing, and it was pretty thick. Those Ice Detection tassels were a pain in the rear checking before each flight, the heater blankets were great till they found corrosion under them.The were activated, then deactivated, and then at the end of the MD-80 at Continental, they were reactivated. IIRC, Continental went with heater blankets, American went with heater panels.
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CALTECH
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sat Jan 25, 2020 2:21 pm

Sokes wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
We only use wing anti-ice in case of severe icing conditions. I've never seen it used. Engine anti-ice goes on pretty frequently, but this won't affect frost formation from cold soaked fuel.

As Tristarsteve says, in-flight the air is typically going by too fast for moisture to stick. At least in jets.


Interesting that ice easily forms on the engine intake, but rare on the leading edge and not at all at the wing behind the leading edge.

I found a nice video for fellow enthusiasts:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7R0wzM2y6M


The wing can create ice behind the leading edge, we see it a lot in MCO in the winter months, when it's freezing up north but wet and warm around Florida.

Image
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GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sat Jan 25, 2020 3:08 pm

It’s actually caused by the wing being cold soaked at altitude, could happen anytime. It’s not from the north
 
Sokes
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sat Jan 25, 2020 5:50 pm

CALTECH wrote:
Sokes wrote:
Interesting that ice easily forms on the engine intake, but rare on the leading edge and not at all at the wing behind the leading edge.

...


The wing can create ice behind the leading edge, we see it a lot in MCO in the winter months, when it's freezing up north but wet and warm around Florida.
...


I wasn't precise enough. I meant to say during flight.
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CALTECH
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:01 am

Sokes wrote:
CALTECH wrote:
Sokes wrote:
Interesting that ice easily forms on the engine intake, but rare on the leading edge and not at all at the wing behind the leading edge.

...


The wing can create ice behind the leading edge, we see it a lot in MCO in the winter months, when it's freezing up north but wet and warm around Florida.
...


I wasn't precise enough. I meant to say during flight.


Ice will form on the wing behind the leading edge during flight. See the photo above of the 767.
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CALTECH
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:07 am

GalaxyFlyer wrote:
It’s actually caused by the wing being cold soaked at altitude, could happen anytime. It’s not from the north


Talking about winter in the north, when the wings are cold soaked then get more so during flight. Then go through some clouds and or precipitation here near Florida, and they land looking like the 767 in the photo. Was up north in a lot of stations, Minot AFB being one of them. No, the ice is not from the north, usually forms down around Florida when we have systems nearby and cold soaked wings from the north with relative warm fuel in them.
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GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Deicing is aircraft type depending

Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:54 am

That ice on the 767 was formed on the ground. Wing and fuel was cold soaked at altitude, no ice formed until the landed in warm humid weather—the cold fuel in high humidity caused the ice on underside of the wing. If the tank is shallow enough, it can form on top and bottom as it did on MD-80s in a Texas summer.

I’ve seen ice form like that in summer after a long flight fron a warm origin.

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