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{{infobox Air Ground Communication
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{{Infobox Air Ground Communication
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''Did you know that you can comment and suggest improvements to this article? Click [[talk:Air-Ground Communication|here]]!''
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== Definition ==
 +
Two-way communication between aircraft and stations or locations on the surface of
 +
the earth.
  
== Description ==
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''Source: ICAO Annex 10 - Aeronautical Communications''
  
Until data link communication comes into widespread use, air traffic control will continue to depend heavily upon voice communications, which are affected by various factors. Any breakdown in communication between pilot and ATCO can result in a hazardous situation, especially in controlled airspace. Alternative means of communication do currently exist but they are still very limited in their capability to substitute for RTF as usually employed.
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==Voice Communications==
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Voice/audio communications between an aircraft and the ground are traditionally accomplished using radio telephony, broadcasting and receiving on:
 +
* UHF
 +
* VHF
 +
* HF
  
Problems with Air Ground Communications have been a significant cause or a contributory factor in many aircraft accidents and serious incidents.
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Alternatively voice communications can be conducted using [[SATCOM]], including VOIP through the Internet.
  
== Types of Communication Breakdown ==
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For further information, see the separate article "[[Air-Ground Voice Communications]]"
Communication breakdown may result from:
 
*Failure to hear or to respond to a message because of:
 
**[[Communication Equipment Problems|Communication equipment problems]] caused by malfunction or complete failure of aircraft or ground equipment - becoming less of an issue with improved system redundancy;
 
**[[Radio interference]], which makes the message difficult or impossible to read;
 
**[[Blocked Transmission]];
 
**[[Call-sign Confusion]] - the message was wrongly addressed or was taken by another aircraft;
 
** Flight crew unintended mis-management of radio frequency or box selection - which remains one of the main causes of [[prolonged loss of communication]];
 
*A breakdown in [[radio discipline]] resulting in the pilot receiving and acting on an incorrect version of the message passed, due for example to:
 
**Failure to use [[Standard Phraseology|standard phraseology]];
 
**Poor [[language]] skills;
 
**Failure of the [[Read-back or Hear-back|read-back/hear-back]] process;
 
  
== Effects ==
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==Data Communications==  
Communication breakdown may result in:
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Data can be passed between an aircraft and a ground station using:
*The pilot not flying the required vertical profile which may lead to a ([[Level Bust|level bust]]), or not following the required horizontal profile:
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* [[ACARS]]
**Either situation may cause the aircraft to enter protected airspace ([[Airspace Infringement|airspace infringement]]), leading to disruption of air traffic causing risk to other airspace users and increased workload for pilots and controllers, and also potentially putting the aircraft at risk from ground hazards such as artillery firing;
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* [[Introduction to CPDLC Operations|CPDLC]]
**Either situation can lead to [[Loss of Separation|loss of separation]] from other aircraft, or airborne objects (Ballons or parachutists for example) which may result in collision.
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* [[ADS-B]]
**Level bust may also lead to collision with an obstacle or the ground ([[CFIT]]);
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* [[Mode S]]
**Injury, especially to cabin crew or passengers, may be occasioned by sudden manoeuvres to avoid collision with other aircraft or the ground, or from [[Wake Vortex Turbulence|wake vortex turbulence]] encounter;
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* [[Secondary Surveillance Radar]]
*The pilot changing to an incorrect frequency or not implementing a [[Frequency Change|frequency change]], leading to:
 
**[[Loss of situation awareness]];
 
**Inability to respond to further clearance or to emergency instructions, e.g. avoiding action.
 
**This is exacerbated if the pilot fails to check in on ''any'' frequency having acknowledged a requested change;
 
*[[Runway Incursion]] and other hazardous situations while on the ground.
 
*Confusion between, and increased workload for, ATCOs.
 
  
== Defences ==
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==Visual Communications==
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Communications can be accomplished visually using, for example, and Aldis<ref>A signal lamp (also called an Aldis lamp, named for its inventor Arthur C. W. Aldis) is a visual signaling device for optical communication (typically using Morse code) - essentially a focused lamp which can produce a pulse of light.</ref> Lamp to flash messages between aircraft and ground stations in [[Morse Code]] or through standard conventions associated with emergency situations.
  
The principle defence against communication breakdown is adherence to [[SOPs]], particularly in regard to [[radio discipline]].
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==Related Articles==
 +
* [[SELCAL]]
 +
* [[Military Interception Signalling]]
  
Defence against the effects of communication breakdown include the following:
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==Further Reading==
*Onboard aircraft equipment designed to warn of potential collision with other aircraft ([[ACAS|ACAS/TCAS]]).
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* [http://www.skybrary.aero/index.php/Toolkit:ALLCLEAR ALLCLEAR? Toolkit]
*Ground-based equipment designed to warn of potential collision with other aircraft: [[STCA|Short Term Conflict Alert (STCA)]], potential collision with the ground, [[MSAW|Minimum Safe Altitude Warning (MSAW)]], or airspace infringement [[Area Proximity Warning]] (APW).
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* Bureau d’Enquêtes et d’Analyses (BEA) [http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/817.pdf Incidents in Air Transport No 10 - Aerodrome Traffic]
 
 
 
 
== Typical Scenarios ==
 
*The pilot or ATCO does not use [[Standard Phraseology]] resulting in the message being misunderstood.
 
*Part of the message is lost due to [[radio interference]], or because of [[Blocked Transmission]].
 
*The pilot mishears all or part of a clearance, the pilot does not read back the clearance and the ATCO does not challenge the absence of a read-back ([[Read-back or Hear-back|read-back/hear-back]]).
 
*The pilot reads back all or part of the clearance incorrectly but the ATCO does not note the error and does not correct the pilot’s read-back ([[Read-back or Hear-back|read-back/hear-back]]).
 
*The pilot accepts a clearance intended for another aircraft ([[Call-sign Confusion|call-sign confusion]]).
 
 
 
 
 
== Contributory Factors ==
 
*[[Pilot work-load|Pilot workload]].
 
*[[ATCO Work-Load|ATCO workload]];
 
*Inadequate [[language]] proficiency;
 
*[[Frequency congestion]];
 
*[[Non-Standard Phraseology|Non-standard phraseology]];
 
*[[Radio interference]];
 
*[[Interruption or Distraction|Distractions or interruptions]];
 
*[[Fatigue]];
 
*[[Weather]];
 
*[[Emergency Communications]].
 
 
 
== Solutions ==
 
*Improved pilot and ATCO training to ensure that pilots and ATCOs understand and follow SOPs, particularly with regard to:
 
**[[Radio discipline]];
 
**Prevention of [[Blocked Transmission|blocked transmissions]]
 
**Emergency communications.
 
*Recognise and understand respective pilot and ATCO working environments and constraints.
 
*Listen to other communications on the frequency to build situational awareness, avoid talking over transmissions by other users, and be alert to potential call sign confusion.
 
*Promotion of, and training in, [[CRM|Crew Resource Management]] in order to ensure that SOPs are applied in best possible way to ensure:
 
**The flight clearance is understood. This includes checking to ensure that both pilots agree and understand the flight clearance (cross-checking is a role overseen by the monitoring pilot/crew member);
 
**The aircraft follows the flight clearance and does not unintentionally deviate from it. This includes checking the settings made to technical equipment and monitoring the performance of that equipment and the aircraft in order to detect any error or malfunction.
 
*Action within ATM to improve [[TRM|Team Resource Management]], thereby ensuring that:
 
**The flight crew understand the flight clearance;
 
**Deviation from an essential element of the clearance is detected and corrected at an early point.
 
*Improved technical equipment.
 
 
 
 
 
== Further Reading ==
 
 
 
'''European Action Plan for Air-Ground Communications Safety'''
 
 
 
The [http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/114.pdf Action Plan for Air-Ground Communications Safety] may be viewed as a whole. Alternatively, the Briefing Notes may be viewed separately as follows:
 
 
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/109.pdf AGC Briefing Note 1 - General];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/110.pdf AGC Briefing Note 2 – Call Sign Confusion];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/111.pdf AGC Briefing Note 3 – Loss of Communication];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/112.pdf AGC Briefing Note 4 – Blocked Transmissions];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/113.pdf AGC Briefing Note 5 – Radio Discipline].
 
 
 
'''HindSight Articles'''
 
 
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/161.pdf HS2 Getting the Message Across];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/27.pdf HS2 Analysis of an AIRPROX in Japan].
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/79.pdf HS4 Loss of Separation - A Lesson for the Instructor];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/83.pdf Effective Communication in the Aviation Environment];
 
 
 
'''AGC Safety Letters'''
 
 
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/117.pdf AGC Safety Letter December 2004];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/121.pdf AGC Safety Letter August 2005];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/122.pdf AGC Safety Letter April 2006];
 
 
 
'''Other Material'''
 
 
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/120.pdf Investigation into Loss of Communication];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/162.pdf AGC Safety Study – Causes and Recommendations];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/119.pdf AGC Safety Study - An Analysis of Pilot-Controller Occurrences];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/116.pdf AGC Top 10 Tips];
 
*[http://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/115.pdf All Clear Phraseology Manual].
 
 
 
For further information refer to the EUROCONTROL "AllClear" web-site: [http://www.allclear.aero http://www.allclear.aero]. The AllClear toolkit provides numerous downloadable training products, videos, and computer based training examples for pilots and controllers.
 
  
 +
==References==
 +
<references/>
  
 
[[Category:Air Ground Communication]]
 
[[Category:Air Ground Communication]]
[[Category:Operational Issues]]
 

Latest revision as of 10:09, 25 January 2019

Article Information
Category: Air Ground Communication Air Ground Communication
Content source: SKYbrary About SKYbrary
Content control: EUROCONTROL EUROCONTROL

Definition

Two-way communication between aircraft and stations or locations on the surface of the earth.

Source: ICAO Annex 10 - Aeronautical Communications

Voice Communications

Voice/audio communications between an aircraft and the ground are traditionally accomplished using radio telephony, broadcasting and receiving on:

  • UHF
  • VHF
  • HF

Alternatively voice communications can be conducted using SATCOM, including VOIP through the Internet.

For further information, see the separate article "Air-Ground Voice Communications"

Data Communications

Data can be passed between an aircraft and a ground station using:

Visual Communications

Communications can be accomplished visually using, for example, and Aldis[1] Lamp to flash messages between aircraft and ground stations in Morse Code or through standard conventions associated with emergency situations.

Related Articles

Further Reading

References

  1. ^ A signal lamp (also called an Aldis lamp, named for its inventor Arthur C. W. Aldis) is a visual signaling device for optical communication (typically using Morse code) - essentially a focused lamp which can produce a pulse of light.