Multiple IFR Arrivals into Satellite Airports

CaptainObvious

Forum Sage
Messages
619
This scenario happens pretty often. I'm curious why isn't it a good idea? You never had a guy execute a missed approach? How do you protect the missed approach segment when you have the second guy cleared? At what point are you not responsible for vertical separation and lateral separation? Maybe the guy landed and the field is socked in with horrible visability and he crashes. If you applied the rules in .65 you would be doing your job. The crashed guy never cancels you hold the second guy out. You call the fbo ask about him they know nothing. After 30 minutes you consider him a over do ac. You call center they get the sar going. Clearing a bunch of people to a uncontrolled airport with out getting cancellations is not doing your job. 4-8-1 F. Except when applying radar procedures,timed approaches, clear an aircraft for an approach to an airport when the proceeding aircraft has landed or canceled ifr flight plan.
Because you can’t cancel the second ones approach clearance 🙄

/s
 

CaptainObvious

Forum Sage
Messages
619
It's easy to get him to cancel. Cleared direct xxx airport and hold maintain xxx previous ac was cleared in a xxxx time. When he cancels I can clear you in. He will cancel immediately.
The problem in your arguments is they are so cut and dried and don’t address the actual question. Can you clear multiple aircraft into an uncontrolled airport at the same time. Yes, we do it all the time, and simply instruct them to remain on our frequency. If you want to play the what if game, I could ask you what if the second a/c goes Nordo before you give him a clearance, and doesn’t acknowledge your holding instructions? The first a/c also hasn’t canceled. What then?
 

Belowme

Member
Messages
28
It could be where I'm at the pilots have bad habits and they change to advisory frequency sometimes when they've been cleared. Happens about one out of every 25 times. Drives me nuts.
 

MJ

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
2,128
This scenario happens pretty often. I'm curious why isn't it a good idea? You never had a guy execute a missed approach? How do you protect the missed approach segment when you have the second guy cleared and freq changed? At what point are you not responsible for vertical separation and lateral separation? Maybe the guy landed and the field is socked in with horrible visability and he crashes. If you applied the rules in .65 you would be doing your job. The crashed guy never cancels you hold the second guy out. You call the fbo ask about him they know nothing. After 30 minutes you consider him a over do ac. You call center they get the sar going. Clearing a bunch of people to a uncontrolled airport with out getting cancellations is not doing your job. 4-8-1 F. Except when applying radar procedures,timed approaches, visual approach, clear an aircraft for an approach to an airport when the proceeding aircraft has landed or canceled ifr flight plan.
Restored this because: No one's fighting, and it's the most complete answer to the OP. That reference is explicitly describing when it is/isn't allowed.

It could be where I'm at the pilots have bad habits and they change to advisory frequency sometimes when they've been cleared. Happens about one out of every 25 times. Drives me nuts.
They're not doing what they're supposed to. You're compensating for the pilot deviations to be safer, but it doesn't change what the rules are. :yay:
 

edds93

Member
Messages
53
Restored this because: No one's fighting, and it's the most complete answer to the OP. That reference is explicitly describing when it is/isn't allowed.
So my takeaway is that it's legal, just not always the best practice but in reference to 4-8-1, what exactly is considered "applying radar procedures"? If the first aircraft drops off the scope 1/2 mile from the threshold, does it become a nonradar separation?
 

CaptainObvious

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619
So my takeaway is that it's legal, just not always the best practice but in reference to 4-8-1, what exactly is considered "applying radar procedures"? If the first aircraft drops off the scope 1/2 mile from the threshold, does it become a nonradar separation?
Yes
 

MJ

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
2,128
So my takeaway is that it's legal, just not always the best practice but in reference to 4-8-1, what exactly is considered "applying radar procedures"? If the first aircraft drops off the scope 1/2 mile from the threshold, does it become a nonradar separation?
Meeting the requirements to apply radar procedures. For your example, If there's no target, you can't measure the distance between them, so you can't use radar, then the only option is nonradar. Also, it is illegal unless you can meet one of the "except when..." requirements of 4-8-1.

I wasn't kidding. It's in the AIM.
I'm nearly positive you are confusing radar service with IFR "service". If not... I don't know.
 

ArcherFlyer

Lurker
Messages
33
I think you're confusing an IFR cancellation with radar service terminated. You hear controllers say all the time say, "radar service terminated, change to advisory frequency approved"; however, once you tell an aircraft to change to advisory frequency, radar service is automatically terminated, not the IFR clearance. The IFR fight plan is not cancelled until the pilot either cancels in the air or on the ground. Controllers must still protect for the missed approach, etc. When I have multiple arrivals inbound to non-towered airports, I just hold them at an IAF with a published holding pattern until I receive the IFR cancellation.
 

CaptainObvious

Forum Sage
Messages
619
I wasn't kidding. It's in the AIM.
From the AIM 5-1-15:

“ f. If operating on an IFR flight plan to an airport where there is no functioning control tower, the pilot must initiate cancellation of the IFR flight plan. This can be done after landing if there is a functioning FSS or other means of direct communications with ATC. In the event there is no FSS and/or air/ground communications with ATC is not possible below a certain altitude, the pilot should, weather conditions permitting, cancel the IFR flight plan while still airborne and able to communicate with ATC by radio. This will not only save the time and expense of canceling the flight plan by telephone but will quickly release the airspace for use by other aircraft.”

Perhaps you can share what you’re going off of because this is unambiguous
 

edds93

Member
Messages
53
Meeting the requirements to apply radar procedures. For your example, If there's no target, you can't measure the distance between them, so you can't use radar, then the only option is nonradar. Also, it is illegal unless you can meet one of the "except when..." requirements of 4-8-1.
So if it's IMC and you clear the first guy and he doesn't cancel until after he lands, you can't clear the second guy because you wouldn't be applying radar procedures because the first aircraft's target would've dropped off when he landed? Is there ever really going to be a time in IMC where you can have both aircraft cleared or is that mostly going to be a visual approach thing? .....OR for example I guess you could technically have 2 guys cleared for the approach with 6 miles in trail but then you would have to cancel the second guys approach as soon as you lost radar on the first guy since it would become nonradar (assuming he didn't cancel IFR before that)? Am I understanding this right?
 

eltors0

Trusted Contributor
FAA
Messages
40
Facility
MFD Mansfield Tower
So if it's IMC and you clear the first guy and he doesn't cancel until after he lands, you can't clear the second guy because you wouldn't be applying radar procedures because the first aircraft's target would've dropped off when he landed? Is there ever really going to be a time in IMC where you can have both aircraft cleared or is that mostly going to be a visual approach thing? .....OR for example I guess you could technically have 2 guys cleared for the approach with 6 miles in trail but then you would have to cancel the second guys approach as soon as you lost radar on the first guy since it would become nonradar (assuming he didn't cancel IFR before that)? Am I understanding this right?

No. What they have been saying this whole time is that, regardless of it being IMC or VMC, there is nothing prohibiting you from having two aircraft cleared for an approach simultaneously into an uncontrolled field that still have miles to fly to accomplish the approach. What you have to prevent is once aircraft one is observed to have landed (or appears to be on approach procedure until the radar gives out due to coverage or whatever), aircraft two cannot continue on the approach procedure at a point where separation cannot be maintained (3 out from the airport, you know or are anticipating a missed approach with course reversal out of aircraft one, aircraft one hasn’t cancelled yet, etc etc etc). The way we primarily deliver these separation instructions is through our assigned frequencies. If we dump aircraft two on CTAF prior to aircraft one cancelling, we are essentially asking for a deal/setting up the conditions for a deal. In short, yes you can issue approach clearances to two different aircraft into the same uncontrolled field. Is it always a good idea to do it? No, and that is why we are there to decide when it is appropriate.
 

Stinger

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
1,097
They apparently had a debate and marked me for a deal because I did this at the Academy in RTF. The guy cleared approach hadn’t even started his procedure turn yet and I released a guy with a 180 heading (away from the guy doing procedure turn) and they called it a deal.
Kind of related....I think Academy and most facilities treat satellite IFR releases the same if somebody else is overflying near the airport and the departure has been given an initial altitude that's above the overflight and say you can't do it....but,
5-5-1 b3 "radar separation may be applied between a radar-identified aircraft and one not radar-identified when either is cleared to climb/descend through the altitude of the other provided...."
One airport I worked at used 5-5-1 b3 to get departures off an uncontrolled satellite airport that were pointed right at departures/arrivals for our main airport. If the radar is working correctly, you're displaying primary targets, you expect a good primary target for the satellite departure, and provide separation from all other primary targets, you're legal.
 

HoneyBadgr

Member
Messages
37
I think you're confusing an IFR cancellation with radar service terminated. You hear controllers say all the time say, "radar service terminated, change to advisory frequency approved"; however, once you tell an aircraft to change to advisory frequency, radar service is automatically terminated, not the IFR clearance. The IFR fight plan is not cancelled until the pilot either cancels in the air or on the ground. Controllers must still protect for the missed approach, etc. When I have multiple arrivals inbound to non-towered airports, I just hold them at an IAF with a published holding pattern until I receive the IFR cancellation.
That's exactly what I was confusing. Radar service with the IFR flight plan.
 

GMX

Trusted Contributor
Messages
123
We have 7 satellites with instrument approaches, and many more one could do a Visual Approach into. If I have multiple aircraft on approaches to a satellite I tell the first one it's important they cancel IFR ASAP. Until I have cancellation from #1, I put #2 in holding or issue vectors to burn time.

On several occasions AC #1 didn't cancel in the air and Flight Service has no cancellation either. Now we have to call the airport and try to get someone to see if that AC is on the ground or whatever before letting #2 land.

I've never had one go far enough past the INREQ or ALNOT phase to affect me before finding someone on the ground to verify the AC landed.
 
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