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IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2016 5:53 am
by Web500sjc
Are there any places where the IMC circling limitation on US airline pilots actually affects tha ability of an airline to land?

For instance I would imagine that US airlines would have been limited from the old Hong Kong airport in IMC conditions with the approach path and runway not aligned sufficiently, where as an airline who does not limit their pilots as such would be able to use the airport. Am I correct that The old Hong Kong airport had only circling minimums?

Are there any regularly served airline airports where circling approaches are regularly used?

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2016 8:17 am
by mandala499
FAA circling areas are smaller than ICAO PANS-OPS, so ICAO Pans Ops will give higher MDAs and visibility requirements. The IGS 13 at old Kai Tak was no problems for any carrier, everyone followed the same minima...
Cat D was 675' and 2000m, and you turn at the middle marker, if the middle marker is inop then it's 700' and 2000m. If the approach lights were out then it's 675' and 3200m... if glideslope was out then it's 680' and 3200m.

Similar visibility requirements to Carnasie 13L/R in JFK, although that one has an MDA of 2500ft and no IGS...  

Regularly served airports with circling approaches?

Busan in S Korea has circling only for runway 18L/R... unless you prefer a tailwind 36L/R... Circling minimums for 18 are 1700ft and 3km. 747s land there all the time  

Bandung in Indonesia has VORDME for 29, and circling 11 is often used.

Semarang in Indonesia has ILS13, but often the wind is for 31, so it's ILS13 circling 31 or visual 31, skimming the hills on base leg. There is a Circling letdown for 13/31 from the SE too.

Yogyakarta in Indonesia has ILS09, you can circle to land 27 or do a visual, and the airport has hills on the south and east... so it's a right circle.

Nearby Solo in Indonesia also has ILS26, but in this case airlines almost never circle to 08...

Manado has ILS36 and ILS18, but also a dual NDB circling for 36. Airlines often use this... Go on a 2 minute left hand racetrack on 1 NDB down to 2300, inbound at 103⁰, leave that one at 073⁰ into another NDB, over that 2nd NDB, you make a 70⁰ left turn to the runway at 1 - 2 NM from the runway.

Innsbruck is a famous one. 08/26, unless you use the3 RNP-AR approach, you go in on the ILS or LOC BC, then maneuver inside the valley... LOCDME (with G/S) 26 from the east is just like any other offset ILS, it's still a straight-in category, but then often you have to do circling inside the valley to land 08. From the west is interesting, LOCDME approach, then you go over the airport, then make a 180 turn inside the valley to go and land 26, or do a 180 then follow a valley side then turn 180 again for 26.

There are others... many others...  

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2016 2:23 pm
by BravoOne
Quoting Web500sjc (Thread starter):
Are there any places where the IMC circling limitation on US airline pilots actually affects tha ability of an airline to land?

Not sure about your intent. A circling approach is a visual maneuver in my past experience. Not withstanding the comments from Mandala.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2016 5:19 pm
by Web500sjc
Quoting BravoOne (Reply 2):

In the us, most airline pilots have a restriction on their pilot certificate that states "VMC circling only" they can only preform a circling approach in Visual conditions (at least 1000 foot ceilings and 3 statue miles visibility). Most us airlines prohibit circling approachs in their SOPs and as a result do not train for them or allow the examiners to test on them. From some research The original Eastern prohibited Circling approaches in 1970.

Anyways, at a lot of airports the circling portion of the approach can be done below VFR minima (with visual contact to the runway).

I guess as an answer to my question, if JNU favors runway 26 I would presume only AS can land due to their custom approach.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:25 pm
by BravoOne
Quoting Web500sjc (Reply 3):
In the us, most airline pilots have a restriction on their pilot certificate that states "VMC circling only" they can only preform a circling approach in Visual conditions (at least 1000 foot ceilings and 3 statue miles visibility). Most us airlines prohibit circling approachs in their SOPs and as a result do not train for them or allow the examiners to test on

While a lot of airlines do invoke this limitation many do not so it should not be taken as a given.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:23 am
by pilotpip
It's more of an issue for a pilot who may want to go work for a foreign carrier in a country that recognizes a foreign license (ie: China). They don't want any restrictions on a pilot's ATP rating so the individual may have to take a check ride to have the restriction removed on their own dime.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:40 am
by barney captain
ILS 31C at MDW cir to 22L. This was very common until the relatively recent RNAV approach. Regardless of published minimums, WN is restricted to 1000'/3mi for any circle.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 12:53 pm
by mandala499
Quoting Web500sjc (Reply 3):
In the us, most airline pilots have a restriction on their pilot certificate that states "VMC circling only" they can only preform a circling approach in Visual conditions (at least 1000 foot ceilings and 3 statue miles visibility).

Ah, some companies have "TERPS circling in VMC only"  
Some have PANS-OPS circling with RQ only.
AND... Cat D circling can be at or beyond VFR requirements...
eg:
JOG and BDO Cat D Circling is 1200'AGL at 5km... due to the terrain.
Most of the ones where I am where terrain isn't due is about 850' AGL at 3.6 - 4km for Cat D circling. (737 is Cat C straight and Cat D circling if I remember correctly)...
(I mean circle-to-land on the opposite runway).

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:53 pm
by Woodreau
My first airline was the only airline that issued an unrestricted type rating with no VMC circle limitation. We checked out to procedure minimums with the circle to land. On my check ride we flew to 400-1 and circled at 400AGL.

Every airline after that was 1000-3 with the VMC circle limitation on every type rating.

I can only think of one instance where I actually needed to circle in less than VMC and only because the ILS was out of service - it was at the first airline. We used an NDB to get down to 400ft AGL broke out around 500ft AGL then circled to land. That's the only time I've flown a non precision circle at minimums.

I think in the US it's rare to actually need the circling approach. Most everything is straight in.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:34 pm
by Mir
Quoting mandala499 (Reply 1):
Similar visibility requirements to Carnasie 13L/R in JFK, although that one has an MDA of 2500ft and no IGS...

800 feet, actually.

http://155.178.201.160/d-tpp/1603/00610VG13LR.PDF

-Mir

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 3:04 am
by mandala499
Quoting Mir (Reply 9):
800 feet, actually.

My bad, I looked at the visual approach chart, not the VOR/GPS approach! Cheers!

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2016 12:59 pm
by apfpilot
Quoting Woodreau (Reply 8):

I think in the US it's rare to actually need the circling approach. Most everything is straight in.

I've only flown Circling when I was getting my IFR ticket and it was under the hood. Never done it in actual.

RE: IMC Circling Limitation, Implications?

Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2016 5:55 pm
by BravoOne
The VOR/ILS 32R, circle to land 04L at Moses Lake, WA is burned onto the backside of my eyelids