Landing Patterns (the 'Battle' break)

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Landing Patterns (the 'Battle' break)

Post  Skip19 on Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:20 am

Ok, you're flight has completed its' mission and you are RTB on lead. you set your NAV steerpoint to 'homeplate' and head home, but when you get there (especially in the campaign) you then have to call the Tower and get a slot for landing.

In multiplayer this can involve tedious amounts of holding, so SOP for landing will be as follows.

10 miles out, Lead calls Tower to get the active runway. Lead then will initiate an 'emergency landing' call to get cleared in, and then call the Flight to announce the landing pattern required from the overhead.

The overhead is a point 2000' AGL the active runway, and is entered perpendicular to the runway heading at Mil power. (i.e no AB) Lead will call (for example)

Fury flight enter overhead left for 09

which means the flight will be entering the overhead (in this case from the south) turning left to fly the downwind (and slowing down and getting ready for landing) before turning in on base and landing.



Formation landings should be carried out with #1 on the left side and #2 on the right.

If there are strong crosswinds or damaged aircraft/low on fuel, landing should obviously be done in singletons, although using the same technique.

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Re: Landing Patterns (the 'Battle' break)

Post  Eagle-Eye on Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:43 pm

Hey,

Not sure where you got the picture from, but this procedure is not used by (most) modern military air forces, due to safety issues.

Some examples:
You're coming in on heading 360, flying perpendicular over the runway axis. Where could traffic be?
- Anywhere on the downwind leg (roughly between your 9 to 3 o'clock)
- Anywhere on ground (moving towards or at the threshold, or lining up on the runway), on both sides of the runway
==> You have to scan "6 hours" on different altitudes to see if you are clear to enter the pattern = very easy to lose Situational Awareness.

You've gotten in the pattern and you're #2 on short final. Your lead blows a tire on touchdown, and you have to go around.
- You'll be heads down to pull up the gear and check fuel.
- Pattern traffic could be anywhere between short final and entering the pattern (roughly 6 to 3 o'clock = 9 hours to scan)


A far better option, used in real life and (most) virtual squadrons:


In a schematic, it looks like this:



The schedule above is made for F/A18 on carriers, but the idea is very similar for F16's.

- Initial: 350 KIAS, 1000 or 1500ft AGL
- Break: 4G level turn
- Downwind: reduce to 200-250 KIAS, gear down
- Base and final: initiate descent, speedbrakes as required, reduce further to 130-150 KIAS depending on weight


Advantages are (assuming a left pattern):
- On initial, you only need to check your 10 - 12 o'clock for airborne, and 11 - 1 o'clock for ground traffic.
- Fourship in tight echelon can separate in 1 maneuver (see this schematic)
- Sharp 180°-turns help you reduce speed a lot.
- In case of go-around, traffic over the runway is already moving in the same direction, and you only need to check left side.
- Right side of the field is not used, so kicking out right slightly - to increase separation with aircraft on the break or in case of emergency - is possible.



Some other remarks:
- Mil power = coming in well over 400kts. Too fast to safely reduce speed and increase or maintain separation.
- Close formation take-offs and landings are never done with live ammo. In case of wide formation landing or take-off (5 - 15 sec), lead will position in such a way that wind will blow him away from wingman. (wind coming from the right = lead left)

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Re: Landing Patterns (the 'Battle' break)

Post  Skip19 on Fri Apr 05, 2013 9:40 am

the purpose of the battle break is to get fast jets quickly into a traffic pattern in a war situation. The 'overhead' approach is a standard approach in the UK and is described as

...this involves positioning the aircraft so that it is flying across the direction of the runway and typically at 1000 feet above the circuit pattern for the airfield.

The pilot crosses the runway from the normal circuit for that runway, looking out for other traffic in the circuit, and descends to circuit height (often 1000 feet AGL for heavier GA aircraft or 500–600 feet for light aircraft and microlights) on the dead side (opposite that of the normal circuit). With no traffic in circuit, the circuit is joined by crossing the upwind threshold and then turning downwind. With other traffic present in the circuit, the aircraft might be positioned downwind in the circuit behind or between other traffic in order to land in turn.

The idea is you come in above the circuit height (2000' AGL) in order to prevent possible collisions. It's not necessarily important the direction you join an overhead from, your diagram for instance shows joining an overhead from the runway direction and breaking at the overhead!

Formation take offs/landings might not be standard with live weapons, but they are fun to do!

Thanks for the feedback EE, we'll incorporate that into the SOPs. Very Happy


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Re: Landing Patterns (the 'Battle' break)

Post  Eagle-Eye on Fri Apr 05, 2013 11:10 am

Skip19 wrote:The 'overhead' approach is a standard approach in the UK and is described as
...this involves positioning the aircraft so that it is flying across the direction of the runway and typically at 1000 feet above the circuit pattern for the airfield.

The pilot crosses the runway from the normal circuit for that runway, looking out for other traffic in the circuit, and descends to circuit height (often 1000 feet AGL for heavier GA aircraft or 500–600 feet for light aircraft and microlights) on the dead side (opposite that of the normal circuit). With no traffic in circuit, the circuit is joined by crossing the upwind threshold and then turning downwind. With other traffic present in the circuit, the aircraft might be positioned downwind in the circuit behind or between other traffic in order to land in turn.
Maybe I'm just not understanding it correctly, but this explanation is something completely different than what is in your schematic. Based on this procedure, the flown pattern would look like this:


I know this is often used by civil aircraft on uncontrolled airfields, to see where traffic is, and to check the "Landing T", but I've never seen it used on (controlled) military fields. Maybe it's different in UK Mil Ops, though. Have contacted someone who might tell me a bit more on the real life procedures, as it's quite interesting if there would be such a difference in procedures. Will let you know what his say is. Smile


Skip19 wrote:Formation take offs/landings might not be standard with live weapons, but they are fun to do!
QFT !! Laughing

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