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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-1 OCT 2000

INTRODUCTION
To further enhance your capability to fly the higher, faster and heavier jets, you will need a condensed review of the weather you should expect worldwide. The following course in meteorology is oriented towards a practical everyday airline flying to cover all EGYPTAIR routes and airports. The course is divided mainly into two sub-sections the first is theoretical forming the base on which the second practical one is built.

TERMINOLOGY
Before going deep into the meteorology course, let`s identify some basic terms. Throughout your professional carrier, the terms meteorology, weather and atmosphere will frequently be used, but do you really know what they mean!!! Here are their meanings: Meteorology : The study of the atmosphere. Weather : The state of the atmosphere at a given location and time. Atmosphere : The gaseous envelope surrounding the earth. LET`S NOW GO INTO OUR COURSE THE ATMOSPHERE You will recall that the atmosphere is divided into a series of layers, or spheres, based on common characteristics within each layer. The troposphere is the one closest to the earth. The tropopause is a thin layer of the atmosphere at the top of the troposphere. It acts as a lid to confine most of the water vapor, as well as most of the weather, below the tropopause. Above the tropopause are three more atmospheric layers stratosphere, mesosphere, and thermosphere (Fig. 3.1.1).

Fig. 3.1.1 The height of the troposphere varies from about 20,000 feet at the poles to 60,000 feet at the equator. For a given latitude, it is higher in the summer than it is in the winter. In mid-latitudes, it averages about 37,000 feet. ATMOSPHERIC CIRCULATION The primary cause of weather is uneven heating of the earth`s surface by the sun; solar radiation is the driving force that sets the atmosphere in motion. Uneven heating modifies air density and creates circulation patterns, resulting in changes in pressure. Air flows from the cool, dense air of high pressure into the warm, less dense air of low pressure. The speed of the resulting wind depends on the strength of the pressure gradient.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-2 OCT 2000

If the earth did not rotate, pressure gradient force would drive wind directly from highs to lows. Instead, the earth`s rotation introduces another force, called Coriolis, that deflects the flow of air to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. The deflection continues until pressure gradient force and Coriolis force are in balance and the wind flows roughly parallel to the isobars. Wind flows clockwise around a high and counterclockwise around a low. Air flows outward and downward from a high an inward and upward toward a low (Fig. 3.1.2).

Fig. 3.1.2 When the pressure gradient force and coriolis are balanced, airflow circulation aloft is parallel to the isobars. Within about 2,000 feet of the ground, surface friction slows the wind, and coriolis force is weakened. Pressure gradient force then predominates, causing the wind to flow at an angle to the isobars. The wind angles toward the low pressure center and away from the high pressure center. MOISTURE AND ATMOSPHERIC STABILITY Weather is very dependent upon the moisture content of the air. If the air is dry, the weather is usually good. If the air is very moist, poor or even severe weather can occur. Water is present in the atmosphere in three states: solid, liquid, and gas. Clouds are composed of very small droplets of water or ice crystals. When they form near the surface, they are referred to as fog. You can anticipate the formation of fog or very low clouds by monitoring temperature/dewpoint spread, When the spread reaches (2C) and continues to decrease, the air is nearing the saturation point. You can also estimate the height of cumulus cloud bases using surface temperature-dewpoint spread, when lifted, unsaturated air in a convective current cools at about 3C per 1000 ft, and dewpoint temperature decreases at about 0.5C per 1000 ft, therefore the temperature and dewpoint converge at about 2.5C per 1000 ft, for example, if the surface temperature is 26C, and the surface dew point is 16C, the spread is 10C. This difference, divided by the rate that the temperature approaches the dew point (2.5C), will help you judge the approximate height of the base of the clouds in thousands of feet (102.5=4 or 4000 Feet AGL.) - Fig. 3.1.3.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-3 OCT 2000

Height

Dew Point Lapse Rate (0.5 C /1000 ft)

Unsaturated Lapse Rate (3 C /1000 ft)

Warmer Fig. 3.1.3


TEMPERATURE INVERSION As we all know that temperature normally decreases with increasing altitude throughout the troposphere. This decrease of temperature with altitude is defined as lapse rate. The average lapse rate in the troposphere is 2C /1000 ft. In fact the reverse is sometimes true, when temperature increases with altitude, and this what is called temperature inversion. Inversions may occur near the surface or at higher altitudes, but they often occur in stable air with little or no wind and turbulence. Visibility is often restricted by fog, haze, smoke and low clouds. IN CLOSING You may anticipate: 1. Fog when temperature-dew point spread is 2C less and decreasing. 2. Lifting or clearing of low clouds and fog when temperature- dew point spread is increasing. 3. Frost on a clear night when temperature-dew point spread is 2C or less, is decreasing, and dew point is colder than 0C. 4. More cloudiness, fog, and precipitation when wind blows from water than, when it blows from land. 5. Cloudiness, fog, and precipitation over higher terrain when moist winds are blowing uphill. 6. Showers to the lee of a lake when air is cold and the lake is warm. Expect fog to the lee of the lake when the air is warm and the lake is cold. 7. Clouds to be at least 4,000 feet thick when significant precipitation is reported. The heavier the precipitation, the thicker the clouds are likely to be. 8. Icing on your aircraft when flying through liquid clouds or precipitation with temperature freezing or colder. AIRMASSES An airmass is a large body of air with fairly uniform temperature and moisture content. It usually forms where air remains stationary or nearly stationary for at least several days. During this time, the airmass takes on the temperature and moisture properties of the underlying surface. The area where an airmass acquires the properties of temperature and moisture that determine its stability is called its source region. The most common airmasses source regions are large snow or ice covered polar regions, cold northern oceans, tropical oceans and large desert areas.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-4 OCT 2000

As an airmass moves over a warmer surface, its lower layers are heated, and vertical movement of the air develops. Depending on temperature and moisture levels, this can result in extreme instability, characterized by cumuliform clouds, turbulence, and good visibility. When an airmass flows over a cooler surface, its lower layers are cooled and vertical movement is inhibited. As a result, the stability of the air is increased. If the air is cooled to its dewpoint, low clouds or fog may form. This cooling from below creates a temperature inversion and may result in low ceilings and poor visibility for long periods of time. The table in Fig. 3.1.4 shows the main characteristics of stable and unstable air.

Fig. 3.1.4 Stable air is generally smooth, with layered or startiform cloud. Visibility usually is restricted, with widespread areas of clouds and steady rain or drizzle. Unstable air is usually turbulent, with good surface visibility outside of scattered rain showers. FRONTS When an airmass moves out of its source region, it comes in contact with other airmasses that have different moisture and temperature characteristics. The boundary between airmasses is called a front. Since the weather along a front often presents a serious hazard to flying, you need to have a thorough understanding of this weather. The change in the temperature and pressure are the easiest ways to recognize the passage of a front. But the most reliable indications that you are crossing a front are a change in wind direction and, less frequently, wind speed. Although the exact new direction of the wind is difficult to predict, the wind always shifts to the right in the Northern Hemisphere. When you fly through a front at low to middle altitudes, you always need to correct to the right in order to maintain your original ground track. As a front approaches, atmospheric pressure usually decreases, with the area of lowest pressure lying directly over the front. The important thing to remember is that you should update your altimeter setting as soon as possible after crossing a front.

TYPES OF FRONTS
COLD FRONTS A cold front separates an advancing mass of cold, dense air from an area of warm, lighter air. Because of its greater density, the cold air moves along the surface and forces the less dense, warm air upward. The speed of a cold front usually dictates the type of weather associated with the front.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-5 OCT 2000

However, there are some general weather characteristics that are found in most cold fronts. These include: 1. Cumulus clouds. 2. Turbulence. 3. Showery precipitation. 4. Strong, gusty winds. 5. Clearing skies and good visibility after the front passes.

Fig. 3.1.5 Cold front Fast-moving cold fronts are pushed along by intense high pressure systems located well behind the front. Surface friction acts to slow the movement of the front, causing the leading edge of the front to bulge out and to steepen the front`s slope. Because of the steep slope and wide differences in moisture and temperature between the two airmasses, these fronts are particularly hazardous (Fig 3.1.6).

Fig. 3.1.6 Fast-moving cold fronts force warmer air to rise. This causes wide-spread vertical cloud development along a narrow frontal zone if sufficient moisture is present. An area of severe weather often forms well ahead of the front. The weather usually clears quickly behind a cold front. You will often notice reduced cloud cover, improved visibility, lower temperatures and gusty surface winds following the passage of a fast-moving cold front. The leading edge of a slow-moving cold front is much shallower than that of a fast-moving front. This produces clouds which extend far behind the surface front. A slow-moving cold front meeting stable air usually causes a broad area of stratus clouds to form behind the front, When a slow-moving cold front meets unstable air, large numbers of vertical clouds often form at and just behind the front. Fair weather cumulus clouds are often present in the cold air, well behind the surface front (Fig. 3.1.7).

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-6 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.7 As a slow-moving cold front meets unstable air, cumulonimbus and nimbostratus clouds may develop near the surface front, creating hazards from icing and turbulence. WARM FRONTS Warm fronts occur when warm air overtakes and replaces cooler air. They usually move at much slower speeds than cold fronts. The slope of a warm front is very gradual, and the warm air may extend up over the cool air for several hundred miles ahead of the front. Some of the common weather patterns found in a typical warm front include: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Stratus clouds, if the air is moist and stable. Little turbulence, except in an unstable airmass. Steady precipitation ahead of the front. Poor visibility with haze or fog. Wide area of precipitation

Fig. 3.1.8 Stratus clouds usually extend out ahead of a slow-moving warm front. Vertical clouds sometimes develop along and ahead of the surface front, depending on the stability and moisture content of the warm air. The stability and moisture content of the air in a warm front determines what type of clouds will form. If the air is warm, moist and stable stratus clouds will develop. If the air is warm, moist and unstable cumulus clouds will develop (Fig. 3.1.8). At the surface, passage of a warm front is characterized by: A light clockwise wind shift, a temperature increase and an end of precipitation.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY Stationary Fronts

ABC-3-1-7 OCT 2000

When the opposing forces of two airmasses are relatively balanced, the front that separates them may remain stationary and influence local flying conditions for several days. The weather in a stationary front is usually a mixture of that found in both warm and cold fronts. Occluded Fronts A frontal occlusion occurs when a fast-moving cold front catches up to a slow-moving warm front. The difference in temperature within each frontal system is a major factor that influences the type of front that develops. A cold front occlusion develops when the fast-moving cold front is colder than the air ahead of the slowmoving warm front. In this case, the cold air replaces the cool air at the surface and forces the warm front aloft (Fig. 3.1.9).

Fig. 3.1.9 When the air being lifted by a cold front occlusion is moist and stable, the weather will be a mixture of that found in both a warm and cold front. A warm front occlusion takes place when the air ahead of the slow-moving warm front is colder than the air within the fast-moving cold front. In this case, the cold front rides up over the warm front. Forcing the cold front aloft. Fig 3.1.10

Fig. 3.1.10 When the air being lifted by a warm front occlusion is moist and unstable, the weather will be more severe than that found in a cold front occlusion.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-8 OCT 2000

CLOUDS
Clouds are generally described according to their appearance as stratiform or cumuliform. Stratification clouds are formed in strata or layers. Cumuliform clouds have vertical development and indicate convective currents. The following table compares between the two types.

Table 3.1.11 Cumuliform clouds VS. Stratiform clouds These two types of clouds are further classified into four families, based on their characteristics and the altitudes where they occur (Fig. 3.1.12). Low - Bases range from the surface to 6,500 feet AGL. Clouds may be cumulus, stratocumulus, or stratus. Middle - Bases range from 6,500 feet AGL to 23,000 feet AGL. Clouds may be altocumulus, altostratus, or nimbostratus. High - Bases usually range from 16,500 feet AGL to 45,000 feet AGL. Clouds may be cirrus, cirrocumulus, or cirrostratus. Extensive Vertical Development - Bases range from 1,000 feet AGL or less to 10,000 feet AGL or more; tops sometimes exceed 60,000 feet MSL. Cloud types may be towering cumulus or cumulonimbus. The term (nimbo) or (nimbus) are used to name clouds that produce precipitation.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-9 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.12 Cloud types and elevations

METEOROLOGY

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Flight Training Department - EgyptAir

SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-10 OCT 2000

THUNDERSTORMS
Thunderstorms produce some of the most dangerous weather elements in aviation, and you should avoid penetrating them. Remember, there are three conditions necessary to create a thunderstorm: 1- Air that has a tendency toward instability. 2- Some type of lifting action. 3- Relatively high moisture content. The lifting action may be provided by several factors, such as rising terrain (orographic lifting), fronts, or the heating of the earth`s surface (convection). Thunderstorms progress through three definite stages cumulus, mature, and dissipating. You can anticipate the development of thunderstorms and the associated hazards by becoming familiar with the characteristics of each stage. Remember that other weather phenomena may prevent you from seeing their characteristic shapes. For example, a cumulonimbus cloud may be embedded, or obscured, by massive cloud layers.

THUNDERSTORM LIFE CYCLE


CUMULUS STAGE In the cumulus stage, a lifting action initiates the vertical movement of air. As the air rises and cools to its dewpoint, water vapor condenses into small water droplets or ice crystals. If sufficient moisture is present, heat released by the condensing vapor provides energy for the continued vertical growth of the cloud. Because of strong updrafts, precipitation usually does not fall. Instead, the water drops or ice crystals rise and fall within the cloud, growing larger with each cycle. Updrafts as great as 3,000 f.p.m. may begin near the surface and extend well above the cloud top. MATURE STAGE As the drops in the cloud grow too large to be supported by the updrafts, precipitation begins to fall to the surface. This creates a downward motion in the surrounding air and signals the beginning of the mature stage. The resulting downdraft may reach a velocity of 2,500 f.p.m. The down-rushing air spreads outward at the surface, producing a sharp drop in temperature, a rise in pressure, strong gusty surface winds, and wind shear conditions. The leading edge of this wind is referred to as a gust front, or the first gust. As the thunderstorm advances, a rolling, turbulent, circular-shaped cloud may form at the lower leading edge of the cloud. This is called the roll cloud (Fig. 3.1.13).

Fig. 3.1.13 Wind shear areas can be found on all sides of thunderstorm, as well as directly under it. Early in the mature stage, the updrafts continue to increase up to speeds of 6,000 f.p.m.. The adjacent updrafts and downdrafts cause severe turbulence. The most violent weather occurs during this phase of the life cycle.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY DISSIPATING STAGE

ABC-3-1-11 OCT 2000

As the mature stage progresses, more and more air aloft is disturbed by the falling drops. Eventually, the downdrafts begin to spread out within the cell, taking the place of the weakening updrafts. Because upward movement is necessary for condensation and the release of the latent energy, the entire thunderstorm begins to weaken. When the cell becomes an area of predominant downdrafts, it is considered to be in the dissipating stage. During this stage, the upper level winds often blow the top of the cloud downwind, creating the familiar anvil shape. The anvil, however, does not necessarily signal the storm`s dissipation; severe weather can still occur well after its appearance (Fig. 3.1.14).

Fig. 3.1.14 Stages of thunderstorm development TYPES OF THUNDERSTORMS Thunderstorms usually have similar physical features, but their intensity degree of development, and associated weather do differ. They are generally classified as airmass or frontal storms. 1- Airmass thunderstorm generally form in a warm, moist airmass and are isolated or scattered over a large area. They are usually caused by solar heating of the land, which results in convection currents that lift unstable air. Airmass storms can also be caused by orographic lifting. Although they are usually scattered along individual mountain peaks, they may cover large areas. 2- Frontal thunderstorms can be associated with any type of front. Those which occur with a warm front are often obscured by stratiform clouds. You should expect thunderstorms when there is showery precipitation near a warm front. In a cold front, the cumulonimbus clouds are often visible in a continuous line parallel to the frontal surface. 3- A squall line thunderstorm is a nonfrontal narrow band of active thunderstorms which normally contains very severe weather. While it often forms 50 to 200 miles ahead of a fast-moving cold front, the existence of a front is not necessary for a squall line to form. THUNDERSTORM HAZARDS As stated previously, thunderstorms typically contain many severe weather hazards, and may include lightning, hail, turbulence, gusty surface winds, or even tornadoes. These hazards are not confined to the cloud itself. For example, you can encounter turbulence in VFR conditions as far as 20 miles from the storm. It may help to think of a cumulonimbus cloud as the visible part of widespread system of turbulence and other weather hazards. Hail: Most, and perhaps all, thunderstorms have hail in their interiors at some stage of their lives. Hail is also found in the clear air beside the CB. Turbulence: Almost any thunderstorm possesses the potential to produce severe turbulence. Those which procedure hail that reaches the ground generate extreme turbulence. Icing: Generally clear ice is found in thunderstorms above the freezing level.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-12 OCT 2000

First gust: In extreme cases the first gust may exceed 100 knots and change direction at the surface by 180. The average increase is 15 knots over prevailing speeds and about a 40 change in direction of the wind. Lightning: Lightning is one of the hazards, which is always associated with thunderstorms and is found throughout the cloud. While it rarely causes personal injury or substantial damage to the aircraft structure in flight, it can cause temporary loss of vision, puncture the aircraft skin, or damage electronic navigation and communications equipment. Funnel clouds: are violent, spinning columns of air, which descend from the base of a cloud. Wind speeds within them may exceed 200 knots. If a funnel cloud reaches the earth`s surface, it is referred to as a tornado. If it touches down over water, it is called a waterspout. THUNDERSTORM FLYING Above all, remember this: never regard any thunderstorm (lightly), even when radar observers report that the echoes are of light intensity. Avoiding thunderstorms is the best policy. Following are some Do and Don`ts of thunderstorm avoidance: 1. Don`t land or takeoff in the face of an approaching thunderstorm. A sudden gust front of low level turbulence could cause lose of control. 2. Don`t attempt to fly under a thunderstorm even if you can see through to the other side. Turbulence and wind shear under the storm could be disastrous. 3. Don`t fly without airborne radar into a cloud mass containing scattered embedded thunderstorm. Scattered thunderstorms not embedded usually can be visually circumnavigated. 4. Don`t trust the visual appearance to be a reliable indicator of the turbulence in a thunderstorm. 5. Do avoid by at least 20 miles any thunderstorm identified as severe or giving an intense radar echo. This is especially true under the anvil of a large cumulonimbus. 6. Do clear the top of a known or suspected severe thunderstorm by at least 1,000 feet altitude for each 10 knots of wind speed at the cloud top. This may exceed the altitude capability of most aircraft. 7. Do circumnavigate the entire area if the area has broken (BKN) thunderstorm coverage. 8. Do remember that vivid and frequent lighting indicates the probability of a severe thunderstorm. 9. Do regard as extremely hazardous any thunderstorm with tops 35,000 feet or higher whether the top is visually sighted or determined by radar. If you cannot avoid penetrating a thunderstorm, following are some Do`s before entering the storm: 1. Tighten your safety belt, put on your shoulder harness and secure all loose objects turn on the SEAT BELT) and if needed the (NO SMOKING) sign. 2. Plan and hold your course to take you through the storm in a minimum time. 3. To avoid the most critical icing, establish a penetration altitude below the freezing level or above the level of minus 15 degrees Celsius. 4. Verify that pitot heat is on and turn on jet engine anti-ice. Icing can be rapid at any altitude and cause almost instantaneous power failure and/or loss of airspeed indication. 5. Establish power settings for turbulence penetration airspeed recommended in your aircraft manual. 6. Turn up cockpit lights to highest intensity to lessen temporary blindness from lightning. 7. If using airborne radar, tilt the antenna up and down occasionally. This will permit you to detect other thunderstorm activity at altitudes other than the one being flown. 8. Follow the aircraft operations manual (AOM) instructions concerning turbulent air penetration speed, auto-pilot operation, etc.. 9. Apply FOM regulations concerning (FASTEN SEAT BELT) and (NO SMOKING) signs. (FASTEN

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY Following are some Do`s and Don`ts during the thunderstorm penetration:

ABC-3-1-13 OCT 2000

1. Do keep your eyes on your instruments. Looking outside the cockpit can increase danger of temporary blindness from lightning. 2. Don`t change power settings; maintain settings for the recommended turbulence penetration airspeed. 3. Do maintain constant attitude; let the aircraft (ride the waves) Maneuvers in trying to maintain constant altitude increases stress on the aircraft. 4. Don`t turn back once you are in the thunderstorm. A straight course through the storm most likely will get you out of the hazards most quickly. In addition, turning maneuvers increase stress on the aircraft. THUNDERSTORMS AND RADAR Weather radar detects droplets of precipitation size. Strength of the radar return (Echo) depends on drop size and number. The larger the drops or the greater the number of drops, the stronger is the echo remember that drop size has more effect on echo intensity than drop number. Studies have shown that drop size is almost directly proportional to rainfall rate, and the greatest rainfall rate is in thunderstorms. Therefore, the strongest echoes are thunderstorms. Hail also act as huge water droplets giving the strongest of all echoes. Airborne weather radar is designed for avoiding severe weather, not for penetrating it, you should avoid intensity thunderstorm echoes by at least 20 miles, and should not fly between intense radar echoes unless they are at least 40 miles apart keep in mind that is only a general recommendation (Fig. 3.1.15).

Fig. 3.1.15 Use airborne radar to avoid heavy precipitation and turbulence. When echoes are extremely intense, avoid the most intense echoes by at least 20 miles. You should avoid flying between these very intense echoes unless they are separated by at least 40 miles. Hazardous turbulence and hail often extend several miles from the storm centers.

TURBULENCE
Everyone who flies encounters turbulence at some time or other. A turbulent atmosphere is one in which air currents vary greatly over short distances. These currents range from rather mild eddies to strong currents of relatively large dimensions. TURBULENCE CAUSES THE MAIN CAUSES OF TURBULENCE ARE: (1) CONVECTIVE CURRENTS Convective turbulence is caused by thermal instability and is met in connection with the development and activity of thunderstorms. It can cause extreme air motion with vertical speeds up to 6000 ft/min. Mostly it is encountered with severe turbulence in connection with thunderstorm activity.
METEOROLOGY AIRLINE BASIC COURSE (ABC)
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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-14 OCT 2000

(2) OBSTRUCTIONS TO WIND FLOW Mountain waves at the lee side of a mountain may cause severe turbulence, called orographic turbulence. Typical signs are lenticulars and rotor clouds. The strongest turbulence may be found in rotor clouds. Winds at mountain top level in excess of 25 knots suggest some turbulence. A mountain wave should be anticipated whenever winds of 40 knots or greater are blowing perpendicular to the mountain range. Aircraft should fly at a level 3000 to 5000 feet above the tops of the range to avoid mountain turbulence (Fig. 3.1.16).

Fig. 3.1.16 The lenticular clouds form in the updrafts and dissipate in the downdrafts so they have a stationary appearance as the wind blows through them. Rotor clouds may also form, and cap clouds may obscure the mountain peaks. Rotor clouds signify possible severe or extreme turbulence. (3) WINDSHEAR Wind shear, which is a sudden, drastic change in wind speed and/or direction that may occur at any altitude in a vertical or horizontal plane. It can subject your aircraft to sudden updrafts, down drafts, or extreme horizontal wind components, causing loss of lift or violent changes in vertical speeds or altitude. Conditions for potentially hazardous wind shears are: Convective conditions (thunderstorms, rain/snow showers) Frontal systems Jet streams Strong or gusty surface winds Other cases (temperature inversion, mountain waves, sea breeze circulation`s).

Let`s now discuss the microburst phenomenon, which creates one of the greatest hazards to aircraft. A microburst is an intense, localized down draft of brief duration, which spreads out in all directions when it reaches the surface. This creates severe horizontal and vertical wind shears, which pose serious hazards to aircraft, particularly those near the surface. An individual microburst typically covers an area of less than two and a half miles in diameter at the surface and usually lasts no longer than 15 minutes. Peak winds last 2-4 minutes and attendant downdrafts can be as strong as 6,000 feet per minute. Any convective cloud can produce this phenomenon. Although microbursts are commonly associated with heavy precipitation in thunderstorms, they often occur in VIRGA (when precipitation does not reach the earth and evaporates completely in dry air beneath the cloud base, this is called virga, and usually appears as streamers of precipitation trailing from clouds). If there is no precipitation, your only cue may be a ring of dust at the surface. If you suspect the presence of microbursts in your local area, delay your takeoff or landing (Fig. 3.1.17).

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-15 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.17 As this aircraft takes off into a microburst, it first experiences a headwind which increases performance without a change In pitch and power (position 1). A headwind of 45 knots may result in a total of a 90-knot windshear within the microburst. This is followed by a decreasing headwind and performance, and a strong downdraft (position 2). Performance continues to deteriorate as the wind shears to a tailwind in the downdraft (position 3). The Most severe downdraft will be encountered between positions 2 and 3, which may result in terrain impact or operation dangerously close to the ground (position 4). (4) CLEAR AIR TURBULENCE (CAT) Clear air turbulence (CAT) is commonly thought of as a high altitude phenomenon, although it can take place at any altitude. CAT can be a serious operational problem for jet aircrafts flying above 15,000 feet. Its presence carries no visual warning, since it is a form of turbulence not associated with cumuliform clouds or thunderstorms. CAT may be caused by wind shear, convective currents, or obstructions to normal wind flow. It often develops around the jet stream, above and below the jet core and to Polar Side refer also to jet stream in this course. CAT may be also experienced in any of the following conditions: - Vertical wind gradient (rate of change or shear rate) greater than 5 Kts/1000ft. - Horizontal wind gradient (rate of change) greater than 40Kts/100NM. - Routes close to the polar side of a jetstream exceeding 100Kts. (5) WAKE TURBULENCE Wake turbulence refers to the phenomena that result from the passage of an aircraft through the atmosphere. Whenever an airplane generates lift, air spills over the wingtips causing wingtip vortices. The greatest wake turbulence danger is produced by large, heavy aircrafts operating at low speeds and high angles of attack. Since these conditions usually exist on takeoff and landing, you should be alert for wake turbulence near airports used by large airplanes. In fact, wingtip vortices from commercial jets can induce uncontrollable roll rates in smaller aircrafts. The probability of induced roll is greatest when your heading is aligned with the generating aircraft`s flight path. The vortices from large aircrafts in flight sink at a rate of about 400 to 500 feet per min. and level off at a distance of about 900 feet below the generating aircraft. Vortex strength diminishes with time and distance behind the generating aircraft. On the ground in a no-wind condition, the vortices tend to remain on the ground and move outward at about two or three knots. Therefore, a crosswind of one to five knots tends to cause the upwind vortex to remain on the runway and the downwind vortex to drift to a parallel runway. The most hazardous situation is a light, quartering tailwind, since it can push the vortex forward into the touchdown zone (Fig. 3.1.18).

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-16 OCT 2000

WAKE TURBULENCE
Fig. 3.1.18
If you are in a aircraft approaching to land behind a large aircraft, controllers must ensure a separation of four miles,(six miles behind a heavy jet). However, if you accept a clearance to follow an aircraft you have in sight, the responsibility for wake turbulence avoidance is transferred from the controller to you. On takeoff, controllers provide a two minute interval behind departing heavy jets (three minutes for intersection takeoffs or takeoffs in the opposite direction on the same runway). You may waive these time intervals if you wish but this is not a wise procedure. Refer to the table 3.1.19.

Table 3.1.19 This table summarizes wake turbulence avoidance procedures.

Note :
ICAO defines : - A Heavy ( H ) airplane as an airplane with maximum take-off mass in excess of 136 tons. - A Medium ( M ) airplane is defined as having MTOM of between 7 tons to 136 tons. - A Light ( L ) airplane is an airplane with a MTOM of up to 7 tons. TURBULENCE FLYING When turbulence is anticipated or encountered, the following procedures should be used: (1) use the turbulent air penetration speed found in your AOM. Once the aircraft has been stabilized at the turbulent air penetration speed, it is normally recommended that the aircraft should not be retrimmed and that the thrust setting remain fairly constant.

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SECTION 3

METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-17 OCT 2000

(2) The attitude indicator should be used as a primary flight instrument. Maintain level wings and control pitch attitude smoothly. (3) The altitude of the aircraft should be allowed to vary. Large altitude variations can occur in severe turbulence. (4) If the aircraft is equipped with an auto-pilot, its use can be advantageous and usually is recommended. REPORTING TURBULENCE You are encouraged to report encounters with turbulence, including the frequency and intensity. Turbulence is considered to be : Occasional: when it occurs less than one-third of a given time span, Moderate: when it covers one-third to two-thirds of the time, and Continuous: when it occurs more than two-thirds of the time. You can classify the intensity using the following guidelines: Light - Slight erratic changes in altitude or attitude; slight strain against seat belts. Light chop is slight, rapid bumpiness without appreciable changes in altitude or attitude. Moderate - Changes in altitude or attitude, but aircraft in positive control at all times; usually changes in indicated airspeed; definite strains against seat belts. Moderate chop is rapid bumps or jolts without appreciable changes in altitude or attitude. Severe - Abrupt changes in altitude or attitude; usually large variations in indicated airspeed; aircraft may be momentarily out of control; occupants forced violently against seat belts. Extreme - When the aircraft is practically impossible to control, may cause structural damage.

JET STREAM
The jet stream is usually found in the regions where the break in the tropopause occurs. Therefore the jet stream occurs in an area of intensified temperature gradients characteristics of the break. It can be described as a narrow, high speed, meandering corridor of wind moving around the earth in a wavelike pattern. It may be continuos around the earth but, most often, is broken into several discontinuous segments. Normally a jet stream is several thousands miles in length, several! hundred miles in width, and a mile or so in depth. The wind speed along the core of the jet stream is 50 knots or more. The jet stream usually is stronger in the winter than in the summer. This is because its mean position shifts south in the winter. As the jet stream moves south, its core rises to a higher altitude, and its average speed usually increases. The core of strongest winds generally is found between 25,000 and 40,000 feet, depending on the latitude and season (Fig. 3.1.20).

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-18 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.20

TYPE OF JETSTREAMS OVER THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE


There are two rather distinct jet streams, which occur over Northern Hemisphere: a. THE POLAR JET Is the name applied to the jet stream frequently associated with the polar front. b. THE SUBTROPICAL JET STREAM Normally observed over the northern limits of the tropics. In winter it is available between 25 N - 35 N, but in summer between 40 N - 50 N. This jet is not associated with any front.

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-19 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.21 The breaks in the tropopause define the location of the jet stream. The positions of the polar and subtropical jet streams vary, depending on the seasonal migration of airmass boundaries. JET STREAM TURBULENCE Although the jet`s high winds can benefit aircraft flying at high altitudes, severe turbulence is a hazard which you must consider. Clear air turbulence (CAT) often associated with a jet stream that is interacting with a large mountain range or deep low pressure system. The turbulence associated with a jet stream can be very strong, and because it often occurs in clear air, it is difficult to forecast accurately. As a rule of thumb, clear air turbulence can be expected when a curving jet is found north of a deep low pressure system. It can be particularly violent on the low-pressure side of the jet and when the wind speed at the core is 110 knots or greater (Fig. 3.1.22).

Fig. 3.1.22 This is a cross section of a polar core. Note the wind speed gradient, shown by the spacing of the isotachs, is much greater on the polar side of the jet. For this reason, wind shear or CAT is usually greater in an upper trough on the polar side. Precise analysis of the jet stream core is not possible, so you should anticipate CAT whenever you are near an intense jet.

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ABC-3-1-20 OCT 2000

To avoid or to leave the areas of JETSTREAM TURBULANCE the following procedures should be applied : - Reduce speed to reduce acceleration due to turbulence. - If jet stream turbulence is encountered with direct tail wind or head wind, a change of flight level or course should be initiated, since these turbulent areas are elongated with the wind, and are shallow and narrow. - If jet-stream turbulence is encountered in a cross wind, either climb or descent after watching the temperature gauge for minute or two : IF TEMPERATURE IS RISING IF TEMPERATURE IS FALING CLIMB DESCEND

Application of these rules will prevent staying in the turbulent area. - If the temperature remains constant, the flight is probably close to the level of the core, in which case either climb or descend as convenient.

ICING
Aircraft icing is one of the major weather hazards to aviation. Icing is a cumulative hazard. It reduces aircraft efficiency by increasing weight, reducing lift, decreasing thrust, and increasing drag. Each effect tends to either slow the aircraft or force it downwards. Icing also seriously impairs aircraft engine performance. Other icing effects include false indications on flight instruments, loss of radio communications, and loss of operation of control surfaces, brakes, and landings gear (Fig. 3.1.23).

Fig. 3.1.23 The cumulative effects of icing vary as to the intensity of the structural icing: (1) light icing is that which can be disposed of by deicing equipment; (2) moderate icing continues to accumulate at a retarded rate when using ordinary deicing methods, and does not become serious unless it continues over an extended period of time; and (3) heavy icing conditions are critical to flight safety in spite of deicing equipment and procedures used. The most severe structural icing occurs with temperatures between 0C. and -10C. The most dangerous icing conditions are usually associated with freezing rain, it can build hazardous amounts of ice in a few minutes. While the least structural icing occurs in the high clouds family (with temperatures of -40C or below), since these clouds are composed mainly of ice crystals.

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METEOROLOGY STRUCTURAL ICING Two conditions are necessary for structural icing: (1) The aircraft must be flying through visible water such as rain or cloud droplets, and (2) The temperature at the point where the moisture strikes the aircraft must be 0 C or colder.

ABC-3-1-21 OCT 2000

(3) Aerodynamic cooling can lower temperature of an airfoil to 0 C, eventhough the ambient temperature is a few degrees warmer. The types of structural icing are clear, rime, a mixture of the two and frost. CLEAR ICE Clear ice, forms when drops are large as in rain or in cumuliform clouds, and usually at temperatures between 0 C and -10 C. Clear ice is hard heavy, and tenacious. Its removal by deicing equipment is especially difficult. Clear ice is the most serious of the various forms of ice formation to aircraft (Fig. 3.1.24 A).

Fig. 3.1.24 A RIME ICE Rime ice forms when drops are small, such those in stratified clouds or light drizzle. The liquid portion remaining after initial impact freezes rapidly before the drop has time to spread over the aircraft surface, expect ice to occur at temperature between 0 C and -20 C. Rime ice is lighter in weight than clear ice, however, its irregular shape and rough surface make it very effective in decreasing aerodynamic efficiency of airfoils, thus reducing lift and increasing drag. Rime ice is brittle and more easily removed than clear ice (Fig. 3.1.24 B).

Fig. 3.1.24 B MIXED CLEAR AND RIME ICING Mixed ice forms when drops vary in size or when liquid drops are mixed with snow or ice particles. It can form rapidly, building a very rough accumulation on wing leading edges (Fig. 3.1.24 C).

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ABC-3-1-22 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.24 C FROST Frost is a ground phenomenon. It occurs in clear, stable air and with light winds when temperature is below freezing level. Thin metal airfoils are especially vulnerable surfaces on which frost will form. Frost poses a serious hazard during takeoffs. It interferes with smooth airflow over the wings and can cause early airflow separation, resulting in a loss of lift. This means the wing stalls at a lower than normal angle of attack. Although frost increases drag, the aircraft should be able to reach takeoff speed. The danger is that it may stall shortly after liftoff. Always remove all frost from the aircraft surfaces before flight. VISIBILITY One of the most common aviation weather hazards is poor visibility. As a pilot, you usually are concerned with two types of visibility - prevailing visibility and flight visibility.
Prevailing Visibility

The greatest horizontal visibility equaled or exceeded throughout at least half the horizon circle which need not necessarily be continuous.
Flight Visibility

The average forward horizontal distance, from the cockpit of an aircraft in-flight, at which prominent unlighted objects may be seen and identified by day and prominent lighted objects may be seen and identified by night. However, your most practical concern in flight operations often is slant-range visibility. The slant-range visibility may be greater or less than the surface horizontal visibility, depending on the depth of the surface condition but generally slant range visibility will be less than the surface horizontal visibility(This was covered in section two of this course) . Slant-range visibility is important in the approach zone when you are landing from an instrument approach. Horizontal visibility at the surface is most important during poor visibility takeoff operations. Poor visibility creates the greatest hazard when it exists together with a low cloud ceiling. And finally let us see what runway visual range and ceiling mean. Runway Visual Range (RVR) An instrumentally derived value, based on standard calibrations, that represents the horizontal distance a pilot will see down the runway from the approach end; it is based on the sighting of either high intensity runway lights or on the visual contrast of other targets whichever yields the greater visual range. RVR, in contrast to prevailing or runway visibility, is based on what a pilot in a moving aircraft should see looking down the runway. RVR is horizontal visual range, not slant visual range. It is based on the measurement of a transmisometer made near the touchdown point of the instrument runway and is reported in hundreds of feet or meters. a. Touchdown RVR - The RVR visibility readout values obtained from RVR equipment serving the runway touchdown zone. b. Mid-RVR - The RVR readout values obtained form RVR equipment located midfield of the runway.

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ABC-3-1-23 OCT 2000

c. Rollout RVR - The RVR readout values obtained from RVR equipment located nearest the rollout end of the runway. CEILING (ICAO) Ceiling is defined as the height above the ground or water of the base of the lowest layer of cloud below 6000m (20,000 ft) covering more than half the sky. But when the sky or clouds are partially or totally hidden from the observer on the ground, the sky is termed obscured, this means that the meteorological phenomenon causing the obscuration extends upward from the surface. If the clouds and sky are totally hidden, the reported ceiling is the vertical visibility from the ground. For example, if the sky is totally hidden by smoke but the ground observer can see upward for 600 feet, he would report an obscuration ceiling of 600 feet. The main point to be learned here is that an obscuration ceiling of 600 feet is very different from a cloud ceiling of 600 feet. With a low cloud ceiling, the pilot normally can expect to see the ground and the runway once he descends to a level below the cloud base.

Fig. 3.1.25 Difference between the ceiling caused by a surface-based obscuration (B) and the ceiling caused by a layer aloft (A). When visibility is not restricted, slant range vision is good upon breaking out of the base of a layer aloft. However, with an obscured ceiling, the obscuring phenomena restricts visibility between your altitude and the ground, and you have restricted slant visibility. Thus, you cannot always clearly see the runway or approach lights even after penetrating the level of the obscuration ceiling as shown in Fig. 3.1.25. If the ground observer is able to see part of the sky or clouds through a partial obscuration vertical visibility is not reported. If clouds are present, their bases and amount are reported.
Partial obscurations - also present a visibility problem for the pilot approaching to land but usually to a lesser

degree than the total obscuration. This is evident when the pilot is able to see the field when coming overhead, but cannot maintain visual contact with the runway during the approach to land. However, be especially aware of erratic visibility reduction in the partial obscuration. Visibility along the runway or on the approach can instantaneously become zero. This abrupt and unexpected reduction in visibility can be extremely hazardous on touchdown.

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-24 OCT 2000

RESTRICTIONS TO VISIBILITY Let`s now, take a look at some ground-based weather hazards, which can restrict visibility. These include fog, low-stratus, haze, smoke, smog and blowing obstructions to vision (snow, sand, dust), and precipitation. Fog is a cloud at the surface of the earth, is composed either of water droplets or of ice crystals, depending on the temperature. Fog that is dense enough to restrict visibility to 1500 meter or less can form quite rapidly. An example of the sudden increase in fog density often occurs shortly after sunrise. Ideal atmospheric conditions for the formation of fog are: (1) (2) (3) (4) High relative humidity (small dew point/temperature spread), An abundance of condensation nuclei, Slight surface wind, Some cooling process to start condensation.

Fog can be categorized under two headings according to the method of bringing the atmosphere to its saturation point : (1) Fogs which are formed by cooling the air to its dew point (radiation fog, advection fog, and upslope fog), and (2) Fogs which are formed by adding moisture to the air near the ground (steam fog, precipitationinduced fog, and ice fog. Let`s now take an example for each method: Radiation fog is very common. It forms over fairly level land areas on clear, calm, humid nights. As the surface cools by radiation, the adjacent air is also cooled to its dewpoint. Radiation fog usually occurs in stable air associated with a high-pressure system. As early morning temperatures increase, the fog begins to lift and usually (burns off) by mid-morning. If higher cloud layers form over the fog, visibility will improve more slowly. Precipitation-induced fog may form when warm rain or drizzle falls through a layer of cooler air near the surface. Evaporation from the falling precipitation saturates the cool air causing fog to form. This fog can be very dense and usually does not clear until the rain moves out of the area. Haze, smoke, smog, and blowing dust or snow can also restrict your visibility. Haze is caused by a concentration of very fine salt or dust particles suspended in the air. It occurs in stable atmospheric conditions, with relatively light winds. Haze makes contrasting colors less distinct, so objects are harder to see. It also creates the illusion of being higher than actual above the runway, and can cause pilots to fly a lower approach. Smoke is usually much more localized; it is generally found in industrial areas and is a hazard only when it drifts across your intended landing field. On the other hand, smog, which is a combination of fog and smoke, can produce very poor visibility over a large area. Blowing dust and blowing snow present similar problems. They occur in moderate to high winds and can extend to an altitude of several thousand feet. Precipitation - Rain, drizzle, and snow are the forms of precipitation which most commonly present ceiling and/or visibility problems. Drizzle or snow restricts visibility to a greater degree than rain. Visibility may be reduced to zero in heavy snow. Rain seldom reduces surface visibility below 1500 meters except in brief, heavy showers, but rain does limit cockpit visibility. The following sub-section, having a practical nature, will complement the theoretical review already covered. Familiarize yourself well with the different layouts (Forms and charts) in which the meteorological information will be available, this will be the bases on which all relevant decisions will be made until your flying days are over.

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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-25 OCT 2000

Aviation Weather Reports There are three types of aviation weather reports: METAR SPECI SIGMET Aviation Weather Forecasts Aviation forecasts are divided into the following: Aerodrome Forecast (TAF) Landing Forecast Takeoff Forecast Area Forecast (ARFOR or GAMET) Route Forecast (REFOR)

AVIATION WEATHER REPORTS METAR Is the name of the code for an aviation routine weather report commonly called ( SA ), METAR is issued at hourly or half-hourly intervals. Some times METAR is appended by a TREND forecast.
SPECI Is the name of the code for an aviation selected special weather report. SPECI can be issued at anytime when a significant change occurs in one or more elements at the weather report . SPECI is also sometimes appended by a TREND forecast. During pre-flight planning, the METAR or SPECI allow you to assess existing conditions and evaluate the accuracy of forecasts. You can also review several previous reports to get a general idea of the weather trend. If the last METAR is below minima and the forecast calls for only slight improvement by your ETA, the destination weather may not permit you to land. TREND forecasts: Are appended to a METAR or SPECI and it is the forecaster`s best estimate of weather conditions most likely to occur. TREND period of validity is 2 hours from the time of observation, and it indicates significant changes in one or more of the elements : surface wind, visibility, weather and cloud (when no significant change is expected to occur, NOSIG is used) SIGMET is defined as the information issued by a meteorological watch office(MWO) concerning the occurrence or expected occurrence of specified en-route weather phenomena which may affect the safety of aircraft operations such phenomena`s are : thunderstorms (TS), tropical cyclone (TC), severe turbulence, severe icing, duststorm, sandstorm and volcanic ash. Examples Of Sigmet Messages And Their Meaning: Example (1): VOMF SIGMET 2 VALID 201500/202100 VOMM - MADRAS FIR TC JANE OBS 15.0N 85.0E AT 1500 UTC FRQ TS TOPS FL400 WI 200 NM OF CENTRE MOV NW 10 KTS NC OTLK TC CENTRE 210300 16.5N 83.5E 210900 l8.5N 82.0E Meaning: The second SIGMET message issued for the Madras FIR by the Madras MWO since 0001 UTC; the message is valid from 1500 UTC to 2100 UTC on the 20th day of the month; Tropical Cyclone Jane was observed at 1500 UTC centred at latitude 15.0 North and longitude 85.0 East with frequent thunderstorms with tops up to flight level 400 within 200 Nautical Miles of centre. The cyclone is expected to move north westward at 10 knots. The Intensity Is not expected to change. Outlook: The TC centre Is expected at: 1) 21/0300 UTC - 16.5N 83.SE 2) 21/0900 UTC - 18.5N 82.0E Example (2): HECC SIGMET 3 VALID 220900/221100 HECA CAIRO FIR HVY DS FCST SE SECTOR HECA FIR UP TO FL150 WKN
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ABC-3-1-26 OCT 2000

Meaning: The third SIGMET issued for the Cairo FIR by the Cairo MWO since 0001 UTC; the message is valid from 0900 UTC to 1100 UTC on the 22nd day of the month; heavy duststorm is expected over the south-eastern sector of the Cairo FIR extending up to flight level 150; the intensity is expected to weaken.

AVIATION WEATHER FORECAST


AERODROME FORECASTS ( TAF ) is the name of the code for a terminal aerodrome forecast ( TAF ) commonly called FT. TAF is an essential report for any flight, you always want to know what weather to expect upon arrival at your destination. You also need this forecast to determine which alternate airports are suitable to be considered as enroute or destination alternates for your flight. TAF describes the forecast prevailing conditions at an airport and covers a period of 9 to 24 hours. TAF is issued separately from METAR or SPECI. TAF valid for 9 hours or less is issued every 3 hours. TAF valid for 18 to 24 hours is issued every 6 hours. It is assumed that last issued TAF automatically amends and update the ones issued previously. When you evaluate a forecast during your preflight planning a destination aerodrome and / or destination alternate aerodrome(s) shall only be selected when the appropriate weather reports or forecast or any combination thereof indicate that, during a period commencing 1 hour before and ending 1 hour after the ETA at the aerodrome, the applicable minima are met. By now it is worthy to explain the key to decode METAR, SPECI and TAF.

KEY TO NEW INTERNATIONAL AERODROME FORECAST (TAF) AND NEW AVIATION ROUTINE WEATHER REPORT (METAR)
TAF LFPO 091720Z 1818 22020KT 6000 -SHRA BKN020 FM20 30015G25KT 6000 SHRA OVC015 PROB40 2022 1000 TSRA OVC008 CB FM 23 27008Kt 8000-SHRA BKN020 OVC040 TEMPO 0407 00000KT 1500 -RAFG FM10 22010KT 8000 - SHRA OVC020 BECMG 1315 20010KT 9999 NSW SKC. METAR LFPO 091955Z 22015G25KT 1200 R07/900 TSRA OVC010CB 18/16 Q1012.
Forecast TAF

Explanation
Message Type : TAF-Routine and TAF AMD-amended forecast, METAR-Hourly or half hourly and SPECI -Special report. ICAO location indicator. Issuance time : All times in UTC (Z), 2-digit date and 4-digit time for TAF and METAR. Valid Period : First 2-digits begins and last 2-ends forecast. Wind : First 3-digits mean true - north direction; nearest 10-degrees; (or VaRiaBLe), next 2-digits mean speed and unit, KT(KMH or MPS), As needed, Gust and 2-digits maximum speed; 00000KT for Calm; (for reports only; if direction varies 60 degrees or more; Variability appended, e.g. (180V260) 4-digit minimum visibility in meters and as required, Lowest value with direction. Ex. 5000 3500S

Report METAR

LFPO 091720Z

LFPO 091955Z

1818 22020KT

22015G25T

6000

1200

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METEOROLOGY
Forecast

ABC-3-1-27 OCT 2000


Report R07/900

Explanation
Runway Visual Range : R; 2-digit runway designator Left, Center; or Right as needed. When RVR more than1500m =p1500, and when less than the minimum value which can be measured, for example 150 m = m 150RVR tendency over past 10 minutes U = Upward, D = DOWN or N = No change.

-SHRA BKN020

Significant Present, Forecast and recent weather : (see table)* Cloud amount, height and type: SKC Sky clear 1/8 to 2/8 FEW Few 3/8 to 4/8 SCT SCaTtered 5/8 to 7/8 BKN BroKeN 8/8 OVC - OVerCast 3-digit height in hundreds of feet, and either Towering Cumulus or CumulonimBus. Or Vertical Visibility for obscured sky and height ( V V 004 ) or unknown height ( V V /// ). More than one layer may be forecast or reported. Temperature : In degrees celsius, first 2-digits temperature Last 2-digits dewpoint. below zero reported with Minus e.g. M06. Altimeter Setting : Indicator and 4-digits (Q-Hectopascal, e.g. Q1012) or (A-inches of mercury, e.g. A2992) Supplementary Information For Report: Wind Shear in lower layers, RunWaY, 2-digits designator, e.g. WS RWY 07R REcent weather of operational significance, e.g. Thunder Storm , FReeZing precipitation, Sand Storm, etc..

TSRA OVC010CB

18/16

Q1012

FM20 PROB40 2022 TEMPO 0407

FroM and 2-digit hour : Indicates significant change. PROBability And 2-Digit Percent : Probable condition during 2-digit beginning and 2-digit ending time period TEMPOrary : Changes expected for less than 1hour and in total, less than half of 2-digit beginning and 2-digit ending time period. BECoMinG : Change expected during 2-digit beginning and 2-digit ending time period and which is expected to prevail from the 2-digit ending time period.

BECMG 1315

* Table of significant present, forecast and Recent weather grouped in categories and used in the order Listed below, if no significant weather is expected to occur in TAF, or to indicate the end of the occurrence of significant weather, No Significant Weather (NSW) Will be used.
QUALIFIER Intensity or proximity (-)Light, (no sign) Moderate, (+)Heavy. VC: In the Vicinity, within 8km of the A/D, but not at the A/D. Descriptor MI Shallow BC Patches DR Drifting TS Thunderstorm. BL Blowing SH Showers FZ Freezing. PR Partial Weather Phenomena Precipitation DZ Drizzle RA Rain SN snow SG Snow grains IC Ice crystals PE Ice pellets GR Hail GS Small hail /snow pellets Obscuration BR Mist FG Fog FU Smoke VA Volcanic ash SA Sand HZ Haze PY Spray DU Widespread dust Other SQ Squall SS Sand storm DS Duststorm PO Well developed FC Funnel cloud/tornado/waterspout dust/sand whirls

CAVOK: Ceiling And Visibility OK


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METEOROLOGY

ABC-3-1-28 OCT 2000

Used to replace the visibility, weather and clouds when: The visibility is 10Km or more. No clouds below 1500m (5000ft.) or below the highest minimum sector altitude, whichever is greater. No CB. No significant weather phenomena. CELLING: Defined as: The height above the ground or water of the base of the lowest layer of clouds below 6000m (20000Ft.) covering more than half the sky. NOTES: 1. It is assumed that if the probability of an occurrence is 50% or greater, confidence is high and the alternative values are indicated using BECMG, TEMPO or FM as appropriate, but when probability is not high PROB is used to indicate the percentage probability of occurrence with only the values 30% or 40% being used. When the probability of occurrence is less than 30%, it is not considered significant and will not be mentioned. 2. TEMPO, which means that the fluctuations will occur for less than half the time, should not be confused with a PROB of 30% or 40%. With TEMPO, the forecaster is confidant that the temporary fluctuations will take place, with PROB30 or PROB40, there is only a moderate probability that they will occur. 3. TAF may include (if there are regional agreement) temperature, turbulence,QNH, RVR and icing forecast. 4. METAR excludes any time concerned with (valid period, BECMG, TEMPO, PROB, FM)

TAF Amendment
When TAF requires amendment, the amended forecast is indicated by inserting AMD after TAF, and this new forecast covers the remaining validity period of the original TAF. Example: Original TAF is: TAF LFPO 132325Z 0018..... Amended TAF will be: TAF AMD LFPO 140635Z 0618....

Change Indicators BECMG & TEMPO


When a significant change is expected in one or several of observed elements ( Surface wind, visibility, weather, cloud or vertical visibility), one of the following change indicators is used : BECMG or TEMPO The 4-digit time group, preceded by FM(from),TL(until) and AT(at)is used as appropriate. BECMG is used to describe expected changes, which reach or pass specified values at regular or irregular rate. The period during which, the change is forecast to occur is indicated using FM, TL & AT as appropriate, when the change is excepted at an unspecified time within the associated time period, (BECMG) and that associated time period will be used. This period will normally not exceed 2 hours but in any case should not exceed 4 hours. Unless a further set of change indicators are used, the conditions given after (BECMG) are excepted to prevail from the 2-digits ending time date to the end of the forecast period. Let`s now consider the trend forecast period from 1000 to 1200UTC. a) When the change is expected to start & end within the trend period, the start and end of change are indicated by FM & TL e.g.: 1000 X X 1200 1030 1130 BECMG FM1030 TL1130 b) When the change is expected to start at the beginning of the trend, and be completed before the end of that period, only TL is used e.g.: 1000X X 1200 1100 BECMG TL 1100 3000 BR

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METEOROLOGY Example:

ABC-3-1-29 OCT 2000

The visibility at observation time is 6 km, and it is expected to decrease, becoming 3000 meters in mist until 1100 UTC. c) When the change is expected to start during the trend period and be completed at the and of period, FM is used to indicate the start of the change, e.g. : 1000X X 1100 BECMG FM1100 X1200

d) When the change is expected to occur at a specific time during that period, AT is used, e.g.: X 1200 1100 BECMG AT1100 e) When the change is expected to start at the beginning of the trend period and be completed by the end of that period OR to occur within that period but time is uncertain, only BECMG is used, e.g. : 1000X OR X1200 X X Unknown Unknown 1000BECMG 3000 1000

f) When changes are forecast to take place at midnight UTC the time is indicated as follows: 1. By 0000 when associated with FM and AT. 2. By 2400 when associated with TL. TEMPO Is used to describe forecast temporary fluctuations in the meteorological conditions which reach or pass specified values and last for a period of less than one hour in each instance and in total for less than half of the forecast period during which the fluctuations are expected to occur. The period during which the temporary fluctuations are expected to occur is indicated by using FM and/or TL as appropriate. a) When the period of temporary fluctuation is forecast to begin & end within the TREND period. The start and end are indicated by FM, TL. 1000 X X 1030 1130 TEMPO FM1030 TL1130 1200

b) When the period of temporary fluctuations start at the beginning end of that TREND, only TL is used, e.g.: 1000X X 1130 TEMPO TL1130 1200

of the trend period but finish before the

c) When the period of temporary fluctuations start during the TREND period and continue throughout the remainder of the period, FM only is used to indicate the start of the fluctuations e.g.: 1000 X 1030 TEMPO FM1030 X1200

d) When the period of fluctuations start at the beginning of the TREND and continue throughout the remainder of that period, TEMPO is used alone e.g.: 1000X TEMPO X1200

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METEOROLOGY NOSIG When no significant changes are forecast during the TREND, the abbreviation (NOSIG) is used.

ABC-3-1-30 OCT 2000

Following the change indicators (BECMG & TEMPO) only the weather elements(s) which is/are expected to change significantly is/are included in the trend forecast. However, in the case of clouds, if a significant change is excepted, ALL cloud groups including any significant layer(s) or masses not expected to change are given. Example of METAR: METAR for YUDO (Donlon International) METAR YUDO 221630Z 24015KMH 0600 R12/1000U FG DZ SCT010 OVC020 17/16 Q1018 BECMG TL1700 0800 FG BECMG AT1800 9999 NSW Meaning of report Routine report for Donlon/Intemational* issued on the 22nd of the month at 1630 UTC; surface wind direction 240 degrees; wind speed 15 kilometers per hour; visibility 600 meters; runway visual range representative of the touchdown zone for runway 12 is 1000 meters and the runway visual range values have shown an upward tendency during previous 10 minutes; fog and drizzle; scattered cloud at 300 meters; overcast at 600 meters; air temperature 17 degrees Celsius; dew-point temperature 16 degrees Celsius; QNH 1018 hectopascals; trend during next two hours visibility becoming 800 meters in fog by 1700 UTC; at 1800 UTC visibility becoming 10 kilometers or more and nil significant weather. * Fictitious location Note: In this example, the primary units (kilometer per hour) and (meter), were used for wind speed and height of cloud base respectively. However, in accordance with Annex 5, the corresponding non-SI alternative units (knot) and `foot( may be used instead. Example of SPECI : SPECI for YUDO (Donlon/international)*: SPECI YUDO 1115 Z 05025G37KT 1200NE 6000S +TSRA BKN005CB 25/22 Q1008 TEMPO TL1200 0600 BECMG AT 1200 9999 NSW SCT015 OVCI 00 = Meaning of report Selected special report for Donlon/International* at 1115 UTC; surface wind direction 050 degrees; wind speed 25 knots gusting between 10 and 37 knots (minimum wind speed not to be included in SPECI); visibility lowest to north east at 1200 meters, visibility 6 000 meters to South; heavy thunderstorm with rain; BKN cumulonimbus cloud at 500 feet; air temperature 25 degrees Celsius; dew-point temperature 22 degrees Celsius; QNH 1008 hectopascals; trend during next two hours, visibility temporarily 600 meters from 11 15 to 1200, becoming at 1200 UTC visibility 10 km or more, thunderstorm ceases and nil significant weather, scattered cloud at 1 500 feet and overcast at 10 000 feet. Note: In this example, the non-Si alternative unit (knot) and (foot) were used for wind speed and height of cloud base respectively. However, in accordance with Annex5, the corresponding units (Kilometer per hour) and (meter) may be used instead. Example of TAF : TAF for YUDO (Donlon International) TAF YUDO 160000Z 160624 13018KMH 9000 BKNO20 BECMG 0608 SCT015CB BKNO20 TEMPO 0812 17025G40KMH 1000 TSRA SCT0I0CB BKN020 FM1230 15015KMH 9999 BKN020 BKN100

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METEOROLOGY Meaning of forecast

ABC-3-1-31 OCT 2000

Aerodrome forecast for Donlon/international issued on the 16th of the month at 0000UTC valid from 0600 UTC to 2400 UTC on the 16th of the month; surface wind direction 130 degrees; wind speed 18 kilometers per hour; visibility 9 kilometers; broken cloud at 600 meters`, becoming between 0600 UTC and 0800 UTC, scattered cumulonimbus cloud at 450 meters and broken cloud at 600 meters; temporarily between 0800 UTC and 1200 UTC surface wind direction 170 degrees; wind speed 25 kilometers per hour gusting to 40 kilometers per hour; visibility 1000 meters in a moderate thunderstorm with rain, scattered cumulonimbus cloud at 300 meters and broken cloud at 600 meters; from 1230 UTC surface wind direction 150 degrees; wind speed 15 kilometers per hour; visibility 10 kilometers or more; broken cloud at 600 meters and broken cloud at 3 000 meters. LANDING FORECAST Is prepared to meet requirements of local operators and aircraft within about one hour`s flying time from the aerodrome. It is prepared either in the form of a self-contained landing forecast or a trend-type landing forecast. - A self-contained landing forecast shall consist of a concise statement of the expected meteorological conditions at the aerodrome. It shall contain surface wind, visibility, significant weather and cloud. The period of validity shall not exceed 2 hours from the time of issue and issued in abbreviation plain language. - A trend-type landing forecast shall be appended to METAR or SPECI and shall indicate significant changes in respect of one or more of the elements: surface wind, visibility, weather and cloud. The period of validity shall be 2 hours from the time of the report which forms part of the landing forecast. Example Of a Self-Contained Landing Forecast : Abbreviated plain language: LDG FCST YUDO 160430Z 05/06 CALM VIS 600M FG SCT 900M BECMG AT0530 VIS 800M Meaning Landing forecast for Donlon/International* issued on the 16th of the month at 0430 UTC valid from 0500 UTC to 0600 UTC; surface wind calm; visibility 600 meters; fog; scattered cloud at 900 meters; becoming at 0530 UTC visibility 800 meters. * Fictitious location

TAKEOFF FORECAST
Shall contain information on expected conditions over the runway complex in regard to surface wind and wind variations, temperature, pressure (QNH). Takeoff forecast is supplied on request to operators or crew members within 3 hours before the expected time of departure. The order of elements, terminology, units, etc., are the same as those used in TAF .

AREA FORECAST (GAMET or ARFOR)


When the density of traffic operating below F.L100 (150 in mountainous area) warrants the routine issue of area forecast for such operations, the area forecast will be issued covering the layer between the ground and FL100(150), it will include the forecast of upper winds, upper air temperature, significant weather phenomena and associated clouds. This information shall cover the flight operations for which they are intended in respect of time, altitude and geographical extent. Area forecast is normally prepared in chart form or in plain language. Example of GAMET area forecast: YUCC GAMET VALID 220600/221200 YUDO AMSWELL FIR/2 SFC WSPD: 09/12 65 KMH SIGWX:10/12 OCNL TS CLD: 06/08 BKN 200 M N OF 49 DEG N TURB: MOD ABV FL 090 MTW: MOD ABV FLO80 E OF 51 DEG E SIGMETS APPLICABLE: 2, 4

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Meaning An area forecast for low-level flights (GAMET) issued for sub-area 2 of the Amswell* FIR (identified by YUCC Amswell area control center) by the Donlon/international meteorological office (YUDO); the message is valid from 0600 UTC to 1200 UTC on the 22nd of the month; surface wind speeds: between 0900 UTC and 1200 UTC 65 Kilometers per hour; significant weather phenomena: between 1000 UTC and 1200 UTC occasional thunderstorms without hail; clouds: between 0600 UTC and 0800 UTC broken at 200 meters above ground level north of 49 degrees north; turbulence: moderate above flight level 090 (at least up to flight level 100); mountain wave: moderate above flight level 080 (at least up to flight level 100) east of 51 degrees east; SIGMET messages 2 and 4 applicable to the validity period and sub-area concerned. ROUTE FORECAST (ROFOR) It will contain the same information of the area forecast but for specified route, it will be prepared in chart form, similar to significant weather chart.

Significant Weather Chart (SWC)


Forecasts of significant weather phenomenon are normally prepared in chart form they are prepared four times a day for fixed valid times of 0000; 0600; 1200 and 1800 UTC, each chart has effective time period of 3 hr. before and 3 hr. after its validity time, these charts also called significant weather prognostic and they depict the weather phenomena for: Flight level 100 and below (Low level) Flight level 100 and above (Medium and high level). This type which you will use in your life career, and it shows the following weather information: a) Active thunderstorms. b) Tropical cyclone. c) Severe line squalls. d) Moderate or severe turbulence (In cloud or clear air). e) Moderate or severe icing. f) Widespread sandstorm / duststorm. g) Clouds associated with a) to f) above. h) Cumulonimbus cloud. i) Surface position, speed and direction of movement of frontal system. j) Tropopause heights. k) Jetstreams. l) Information on the location and timing, if possible, of volcanic eruptions which are producing ash clouds. NOTE: - An Example Of S.W.C Is Shown In Appendix (1) - Symbols and abbreviations used in flight documentation are shown in Fig 3.1.26 A, B, C, D

Upper-Wind And Upper-Air Temperature Charts


The upper-wind and upper-air temperature forecasts are prepared in chart form they are valid for 0000,0600,1200,1800 UTC. Their effective period time is 3 hrs before and 3 hrs after their validity time and they are prepared for the following flight levels (which corresponds to fixed pressure levels indicated in brackets): FL 50 (850 mb) FL 100 (700 mb) FL 180 (500 mb) FL 240 (400 mb) FL 300 (300 mb) FL 390 (200 mb) FL 450 (150 mb) Note: - An example for upper wind and upper air temperature chart is given in appendix 2. - Presentation of wind direction, speed and air temperature is shown in Fig. 3.1.26 D.
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Symbols And Abbreviations Used In Flight Documentation

Fig. 3.1.26 A

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2. Fronts and convergence zones and other symbols used


Cold front at the surface Warm front at the surface Occluded front at the surface Quasi-stationary front at the surface Tropopause High Tropopause Low Tropopause Level Position, speed and level of max. wind Convergence line Freezing level Intertropical Convergence zone State of the sea Sea surface temperature

The double bar denotes changes of level by 3000 ft or less and/or wind speeds by 37 km/h-20 kt, in the example, at the double bar the wind speed is 225 km/h-120 kt. The heavy line delineating the jet axis begins/ends at the points where a wind speed of 150 km/h-80 kt is forecast.

Fig. 3.1.26 B

3. Abbreviations used to describe clouds


3.1 Type CI CC CS AC = Cirrus = Cirrocumulus = Cirrostratus = Alfocumulus AS NS SG = Altostratus = Nimbostratus = Stratocumulus ST CU CB = Stratus = Cumulus = Cumulonimbus

3.2 Amount Clouds except GB SKC = sky clear (0/8) FEW = few (1/8 to 2/8) SCT = scattered (3/8 to 4/8) BKN = broken (5/8 to 7/8) OVC = overcast (8/8) CB only ISOL OCNL FRQ EMBD = individual CBs (isolated) = well-separated CBs (occasional) = CBs with little or no separation (frequent) = CBs embedded in layers of other clouds or concealed by haze (embedded)

3.3 Heights Heights are indicated on SWH and SWM charts in flight levels (FL), top over base. When XXX is used, tops or bases are outside the layer of the atmosphere to which the chart applies. In SWL charts: i) heights are indicated as altitudes above mean sea level ii) the abbreviation SFC is used to indicate ground level

Fig. 3.1.26 C
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4. Depicting of lines and system on specific charts


4.1 Models SWH and SWM - Significant weather charts (high and medium)
Scalloped line Heavy broken line Heavy solid line Interrupted by wind arrow flight level Figures on arrows Flight levels inside small rectangles = demarcation of areas of significant weather = delineation of area of CAT = position of jet stream axis with indication of wind direction, speed kt or km/h and height in flight levels = speed in kt or km/h of movements of frontal system = height in flight levels of tropopause at spot locations, e.g. 340 . Low and High points of the tropopause topography are indicated by the letters L or H respectively inside a pentagon with the height in flight levels.

4.2 Model SWL Significant weather chart (low level)


X L H Scalloped lines Dashed lines = = = = = position of pressure centres given in hectopascals centre of low pressure centre of high pressure demarcation oof area of significant weather altitude of 0 isotherm in feet (hectofeet) or metres. Note: 0 C level may also be indicated by 0 C : 060 , o i.e. 0 level is at an altitude of 6000 ft Figures on arrows = speed in kt or km/h of movement of frontal systems, depressions or anticyclones
o o

Figure inside the state of the sea symbol = total wave height in feet or metres Figure inside the sea surface temperature symbol = sea surface temperature in Fig. 3.1.26 D
o

C.

4.3 Arrows and feathers


Arrows indicate direction. Number of pennants and/or feathers correspond to speed. Example: 270 /115 kt (equivalent to 213 km/h) Pennants correspond to 50 kt or 93 km/h Feathers correspond to 10 kt or 18 km/h Half-feathers correspond to 5 kt or 9 km/h Fig. 3.1.26 D
O

Information Of Aerodrome Pavement Condition During winter period, information of aerodrome pavement condition such as the presence, removal or significant changes in hazardous conditions due to snow, sluch, ice or water on the movement area is to be made preferably by use of: SNOWTAM Format The Eight Figure Group SNOWTAM Format Is the complete and detailed information concerning snow, ice, etc., of aerodrome pavement area including runways, taxiways and aprons. SNOWTAM is included in the aerodrome`s NOTAM received before the flight. Fig. 3.1.27 A, B, C will help you to decode SNOWTAM.

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ABC-3-1-36 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.27 A

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ABC-3-1-37 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.27 B
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ABC-3-1-38 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.27 C

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METEOROLOGY Example Of Completed SNOWTAM Format - SNOWTAM 015 A) EGLL D) G) xx - 20 - 30 J) 40 cm 10 ml M) 0715 R) 2 6 B) 12050500 C) 09R E) 35R F) 2 5 6 H) 0.29 , 0.34 , 0.36 GRT K) Yes L L) TOTAL N) 2 6 P) S) 12050800 T) Deicing

ABC-3-1-39 OCT 2000

Let us now have a real SNOWTAM message as it appears on aerodrome`s NOTAM:

THE EIGHT FIGURE GROUP Is the abbreviated information concerning snow, ice, etc., on aerodrome`s runways only and it is appended to METAR or SPECI. The following table will help you to decode it. DD
R/W Designator: 00-36 adding 50 to the right R/W for parallel R/W. 88 = condition applies to all R/Ws 99=no new report received, previous information is repeated

E
R/W deposits: 0=dry and clear 1=damp 2=wet or water patches. 3=rime or frost 4=dry snow 5=wet snow 6=slush 7=ice 8=compacted or rolled snow 9=frozen ruts or ridges /=type of deposit not reported, e.g. due to R/W clearance in progress

C
Contamination : 1=lessthan10% of R/W covered 2=11-25 % 5=26-50 % 9=51-100 % /=not reported due to R/W clearance in progress.

ee
Depth of deposit: 00=less than 01 mm. 01=01 mm 02=02 mm etc.. 89=89 mm 90=90 mm 91not used 92=10 cm 93=15 cm 94= 20 cm 95=25 cm 96=30 cm 97=35 cm 98=40 cm or more 99=R/W closed due to snow /slush /ice. //=operationally not significant or not measurable.

BB
Braking action or friction coefficient: 95=good=40 94=Med/Good = 39:36 93=Medium= 35:30 92=Med/Poor = 29:26 91=Poor=25 & below 99=unreliable=99 //=not reported, R/W not operational, A/D closed

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ABC-3-1-40 OCT 2000

EXAMPLES :

7 3
R/W 23R

1 5

9 4
Depth 15mm Braking action medium/good

Dry Snow

Covering 11-25 % of the R/W

1 7
R/W 17

9 9

//
R/W Closed

No Report

No Report R/W Closed

1 7
R/W 17

/ / C L R D
Contamination has ceased to exist, No further reports will be sent.

UUEE 220530Z 19003MPS 5000 BR OVC100 M07 / M11 Q1043 NOSIG RMK 75750194 25750194= In Flight Weather Availability As you already know, weather forecasting is still an inexact science, and weather conditions can change rapidly in the course of a few hours. During flight, you need to update the weather information of your destination and alternates aerodromes. You can do this by requesting it from the ACC controller handling your flight, but most of the time this will not be suitable. Also you can sometimes contact information frequencies (stations) shown on JEPPESEN enroute charts if you are within range from them, unfortunately this service is not available worldwide. The most common method for airliner pilots to update their weather information, is to receive it from VOLMET (Meteorological information for aircraft in flight) broadcast. Simply find which VOLMET station(s) is/are broadcasting the aerodrome`s weather informations you need to know. When you are within range from that station, tune its frequency and get information. Refer to Fig 3.1.28 and 3.1.29. Furthermore most of the time before starting your descent for landing, you will be close enough to your destination to receive its ATIS (Automatic terminal Information Service). ATIS will provide you with the weather information and moreover helpful information about the runway in use and its condition (Standing water, ice, sluch, etc.). Refer to fig 3.1.30.

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ABC-3-1-41 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.28

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Fig. 3.1.29

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ABC-3-1-43 OCT 2000

Fig. 3.1.30

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ABC-3-1-44 OCT 2000

AIRCRAFT OBSERVATIONS AND REPORTS (AIREP)


The following observations shall be made by pilots: 1. Routine aircraft observations during en-route and climb-out phases of the flight. 2. Special and other non-routine aircraft observations during any phase of the flight. These observations shall be reported by voice communications or data link if available. 1. Routine aircraft observations - shall be made during en-route at specified reporting points to ATC. These reporting points are shown on the en-route charts with the symbol M Aircraft shall be exempted from making routine observations if : The aircraft not equipped by INS, IRS, etc. The flight duration is 2 hours or less. The flight is less than 1 hour from its destination. 2. Special and other non-routine aircraft observations - these observations shall be made by all aircraft whenever the following conditions are encountered or observed: a) b) c) d) e) Severe turbulence, wind shear or mountain wave Severe icing Thunderstorms with or without hail, that are obscured, embedded, widespread or in squall lines. Heavy duststorm or heavy sandstorm. Volcanic ash cloud.

Content Of AIR-Reports The elements of routine and special air-reports shall be: Routine Air-Reports Position Information - Aircraft identification - Position or latitude and longitude - Time (UTC) - Flight level or altitude - Next position and time Operational information - Estimated time of arrival (ETA) - Endurance Meteorological information - Air temperature (SAT) - Wind direction - Wind Speed - Turbulence - Aircraft icing Special Air-Reports Position information - [As in routine air-reports except next position and time] Meteorological information - The condition prompting the issuance of a special air-report

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