MOA comms

Discussion in 'Change to my Frequency...' started by Techsan02, Nov 23, 2016.

  1. Techsan02

    Techsan02 Filing Flight Plan

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    Should I contact the AFB to let them know my intentions of landing at HUBER E70? I know we can fly through MOA's, but this one has remarks of "ACFT TRSNG THRU A-638 BLO 3000 FT MSL, CTC RY SUPERVISORY UNIT (CALL SIGN CHARLIE BROWN) WITH PSN AND ALT; CHARLIE BROWN - 122.975, 271.2."

    It seems like being so close to the edge of the MOA it wouldn't be necessary.

    PART 2 to the question
    Is there away to tell if you need to contact approach for class d airports or is it just local knowledge.
     

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  2. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    It's an alert area, not a MOA. Only you can decide if it's worth calling. Not all alert areas are created equal. Some are busy, some are dead. I'd say if you are doing a XC, then just stay up approach / center for FF.

    Part 2. Unless there's something on the ATIS to contact approach, there's no requirement. Just comply with the FAR 91.129 and contact tower prior to entering.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2016
  3. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Randolph AFB is a also a pilot training base (jets) and probably has numerous SIDs and STARs coming and going. Some of those could even be in the vicinity of Huber, maybe even as a visual fix. If you're approaching Huber from the NE-E-SE you'd be crossing the final approach course for instrument approaches to the SE runway at Randolph. When I worked approach at Columbus AFB, another training base, we had SIDs and STARs all over the place. Keep your eyes open and head up! Oh and call, they'll know of traffic BUT still look outside.
     
  4. Techsan02

    Techsan02 Filing Flight Plan

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    Thank you for the info. Now if I call them up directly how do I contact them using that call sign?
     
  5. Shawn

    Shawn En-Route

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    Charlie Brown is the agency you are calling.

    On 122.975 ..."Charlie Brown, Skyhawk 12345, 10 miles to the SE of XZY, 3000' landing Huber with one minute weather"

    ...or just call up for flight following well ahead of time and they will hand you off to them if necessary.
     
  6. RussR

    RussR Line Up and Wait

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    That's not Randolph AFB, it's an auxiliary field associated with Randolph, "Randolph AFB AUX".

    Randolph AFB is about 15 nm to the west.
     
  7. NKTFlyer

    NKTFlyer Pre-Flight

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    Whatever you do, call them. You don't have to be all official sounding with your communication. Just remember the guy on the other end is most likely another pilot in a little shack next to the duty runway with a lawn chair, a PB&J, and a radio. Actually two radios because any traffic in the alert area will be on UHF (so that will keep your SA blissfully lowo_O). Outlying Aux fields can be completely empty or could have several aircraft doing all sorts of profiles.

    Depending on the procedures agreed upon, those planes could all have discrete squawks or all have their Mode 3C shut off completely.
     
  8. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Yup. I saw Randolph and jumped the gun. And I know the runway layout at Randolph. Sorry.
     
  9. 35 AoA

    35 AoA Cleared for Takeoff

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    Most of the time, the freq mil aircraft are up on in the MOA (some have "area common" freqs) or that they communicate with the controlling agency on, are UHF…………so not really useable for a lot of civilian aircraft. If you just want to alert the controlling agency of your intent to transit, I'd work with ATC to get flight following and a squawk, or at the very least (though not required of course), contact the controlling agency. For the education of those who might not know, when transiting a TACTS/TCTS instrumented type range, if you are on a discrete code (i.e. VFR flight following or in rare Life Flight type instances, IFR), the range control facility can inject your mode 3C squawk into the common picture for avoidance and/or deconfliction with military assets. In other words your airplane will be a displayed icon, and in a larger exercise/training event where it would matter, the aviator on the ground managing safety of flight can monitor your position and set a floor for the event as required to keep you safe. If you are just a 1200 VFR guy, due to system limitations, those guys are mostly guessing at your precise location. While we will do everything possible to deconflict that traffic as well, it is a bit more task saturating and also less accurate. In short, do your brothers in grey a favor and announce your intentions to ATC (who are already in comms with the MOA folks), and get flight following………….we will absolutely do our part to make your trip as safe as we possibly can.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2016
  10. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Pattern Altitude

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    I'm a "semi-local" AF pilot i.e. have been long tour TDY for upgrade training at Randolph twice, but I'm too much of a second class citizen to get the hook-up of permanent duty station to bona fide civilization...so they stuck me doing the same job 130NM to the west in g-d Azkaban, via US HWY 90 aka the Trail of Tears. I digress.

    At any rate, here's the deal: That Alert area is for the Seguin Aux Field, Charlie Brown is the name of the RSU (runway supervisory unit). The airspace is yours to transit, but knowing the local pattern ops will help you stay clear of conflict.

    Seguin is the T-38 aux field. KBAZ accomodates the T-6s (used to be KSSF exclusively). See attached MACA brochure for a "sketch" of the pattern flow between home plate and Seguin Aux. It's not particularly accurate in the way our FOUO inflight guides are, but it will get you a good enough idea. Recognize we don't fly nights locally at Randolph, and AF aux fields in primary training programs are always daytime only anyways. As such Seguin ops are daytime only. They're also fairly sparse compared to T-6 ops in volume. Most of the time, seguin is crickets.
    110830-F-JZ019-680.JPG


    Your conflicts are the transit areas from RND into the Seguin pattern, latter which is a 9 mile box to the east of the runway (the depiction in the sectional is misleading, there's only one runway). So, stay west of the extended centerline and you're good to go. Nothing is going on above 3000'MSL, so if transiting from the eastern quadrants, stay above that altitude until past the extended centerline and then descend into E70.

    Where you DONT want to be is within an L-shaped ground track starting from the runway thresholds up 4NM and bending towards 9NM in length, at 1000AGL and 1500/1800AGL. Those are the st-in and initial tracks respectively. An additional shelf occurs at 2000-2500AGL for the emergency high pattern. This is the significance of 3000MSL as the magic number for no conflict.

    If you broadcast on their VHF, all that happens is the RSU hears you but the T-38s don't, because they're probably on ops freq, unless the new standards have them monitoring Charlie brown victor. They're all squawking 1200 or 0222. T-38s are TCAS cape, so we can see you when you're squawking. We don't squirt RA in the pattern, otherwise the damn thing goes off all the time. We are strictly TA silent, but we still get a TA call for somebody like you crossing. So we have OK SA with the fishfinder. Still, no reason for ya to cross those approach corridors below 3k MSL during bankers hours M-F. Once over Seguin you should be able to descend no problem into your destination. Give a wing rock up there if you're ever overhead and see a couple Talons below ya at 300KCAS. Safe flight!
     
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  11. Techsan02

    Techsan02 Filing Flight Plan

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    Awesome! Thanks for all the great information!!
     
  12. airdale

    airdale Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    This is one of a class of questions best answered by picking up the telephone and calling the facility. Strong odds are that you will get someone who is helpful and you will learn useful stuff. Nothing wrong with asking here and getting some "real world" answers (and, usually some stupid ones as well), but the place to start is on the landline.
     
  13. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Pattern Altitude

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    "real world" in air quotes? Would you consider the opinion of the T-38 pilot who will literally be going beak to beak with the OP over Randolph aux airspace, credible enough for him to rely on?

    The MACA program is there in order to raise awareness of our pattern ops to overlying civilian ops. Which is part of the reason I contribute on here. We are encouraged as mil flyers to increase dissemination of this material, so that the information is not guarded by "official men" in official phone numbers. The latter doesn't improve safety, though it gives GA busy-bodies a sense of self-importance.

    I do get your jab, POA can be a basket of deplorables. But they're a unique basket of deplorables to me and provide me with a edutainment/insult ratio sliiiiightly greater than 1, so I stick around. :D

    And Happy early Black Friday everybody! May the tramplings and fist fights go well for all of you! I'd mention there's this thing called Amazon and the internet, but that would cut on my family tradition of youtube BF video watching.
     
  14. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    He probably didn't read or comprehend the replies of folks in the know, like yourself. Always appreciate someone from the military chiming in with a factual and experienced response.

    Go Air Force
     
  15. airdale

    airdale Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    Hard to avoid being misunderstood. Sorry. The "real world" comment was intended to imply that there is more than what the OP will find out on the telephone, that he will get some of it here, and that it is useful. The reference to "stupid ones" is simply to another kind of real world, POA real world, where not all responses are created equal. But I still think the right way to start is to pick up the telephone. I probably call an ATC facility a couple of times a year with a question. I always get good answers from interested and supportive people. YMMV of course but I think my experience is the rule rather than the exception.