Sep 09

911-dust


US Aerial Surveillance Impaired Off The East Coast Until October 1st Due To “Military Activities” (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Sep 8, 2015):

“We are working to get answers for our members,” said Rune Duke, AOPA director of air traffic and airspace. “This notam has caused considerable alarm and much confusion, while giving pilots little time to prepare. The long duration, ambiguous language, and short notice of this notam are all cause for serious concern. We have spoken with representatives of the FAA and the Department of Defense and will continue to pursue this until we get the answers pilots need.”

– From the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association release: AOPA Seeks Answers About ADS-B Notam

This is not my area of expertise, so I encourage readers to do their own research and decide for themselves whether or not this concerning. Given the fact so many people are extremely skittish about “something happening” this month, I thought it was curious enough to share.

In a nutshell, it appears that aerial surveillance across much of the East Coast will be impaired until October 1 due to “military activities.” We learn from the NBAA (National Business Aviation Association) that:

TCAS, ADS-B Unreliable in Southeast U.S. Beginning Sept. 2

Sept. 1, 2015

Due to military activities, the TCAS and ADS-B surveillance may be unreliable in the airspace over Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, and extending approximately 200 nautical miles offshore, from 1 a.m. EDT (0500z) Sept. 2 until midnight EDT (0459z) on Oct. 1.

Pilots are advised that the traffic alert and TCAS may fail to establish tracks on nearby aircraft and may fail to receive traffic alerts (TA) or resolution advisories (RA). Operators should be aware that tracks may first appear within close proximity to their aircraft, and may immediately go into TA/RA status.

Pilots are advised to maintain an increased visual awareness in this area. If operators believe that an aircraft should have triggered an alert, the incident should be reported to air traffic control as soon as possible.

This is due to a late notice Department of Defense exercise, and NBAA has voiced its concern to the FAA that these sort of significant impact tests need much more notice to operators in the NAS.

The NOTAM numbers are as follows:

  • 5/2817 New York Center (ZNY)
  • 5/2818 Washington Center (ZDC)
  • 5/2819 Jacksonville Center (ZJX)
  • 5/2820 Miami Center (ZMA)
  • 5/2834 NY Oceanic (ZWY)

Text from the ZNY NOTAM:

FDC 5/2817 (KZNY A0369/15) ZNY VA..SPECIAL NOTICE…DUE TO MILITARY ACTIVITIES ON 1030/1090 MHZ, THE TRAFFIC ALERT AND COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEM (TCAS) AND AUTOMATIC DEPENDENT SYSTEM BROADCAST (ADS-B) SURVEILLANCE MAY BE UNRELIABLE IN THE AIRSPACE OVER THE STATES OF VIRGINIA, NORTH CAROLINA, SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, AND EXTENDING APPROXIMATELY 200NM OFFSHORE. PILOTS ARE ADVISED THAT THE TRAFFIC ALERT AND COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEM (TCAS) MAY FAIL TO ESTABLISH TRACKS ON NEARBY AIRCRAFT AND MAY FAIL TO RECEIVE TRAFFIC ALERTS (TA) AND/OR RESOLUTION ADVISORIES (RA). FURTHER, PILOTS ARE ADVISED THAT TRACKS MAY FIRST APPEAR WITHIN CLOSE PROXIMITY TO THEIR AIRCRAFT AND MAY IMMEDIATELY GO INTO TA/RA STATUS. FALSE ALERTS ARE NOT EXPECTED TO BE GENERATED BY THIS MILITARY ACTIVITY AND ANY ALERTS SHALL BE TREATED AS REAL. PILOTS ARE ADVISED TO MAINTAIN AN INCREASED VISUAL AWARENESS IN THIS AREA. IF THE PILOT BELIEVES THAT AN AIRCRAFT SHOULD HAVE TRIGGERED AN ALERT, THE INCIDENCE SHOULD BE REPORTED TO AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNE MOMENT. SFC-FL500 1509020500-1510010459

Apparently, this is concerning enough that AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) is asking for answers. From AOPA.org:

September 4, 2015 

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