International Operations Regional
Figure: PAC Region, from Eddie's notes.
This region is moving from a mix of navigation requirements to the system of Performance Based Navigation outlined in ICAO Document 9613. Current navigation requirements are available on Jeppesen Airway Manual Air Traffic Control pages and Chapter 4 of each region covered by ICAO Document 7030.
[ICAO Doc 7030 Amendment 1, §MID/ASIA, ¶126.96.36.199.]
- For flights on designated controlled oceanic routes or areas within the Anchorage Arctic, Anchorage Continental, Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Nadi, Oakland Oceanic and Tahiti FIRs, a lateral separation minimum of 55.5 km (30 NM) may be applied.
- For flights on designated controlled oceanic routes or areas within the Anchorage Arctic, Anchorage Continental, Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Nadi, Oakland Oceanic and Tahiti FIRs, a longitudinal separation minimum of 55.5 km (30 NM) derived by RNAV may be applied between RNAV-equipped aircraft approved to RNP 4 or better, in accordance with the provisions of the PANS-ATM, 188.8.131.52.
Most of the Pacific is under RNAV 10 (RNP 10) but there are parts that have gone and are going to RNP 4. Aircraft without RNP 4 are still allowed, but those with it have traffic priority.
More about this: Required Navigation Performance 4.
RNAV 10 (RNP 10)
[ICAO Doc 7030 Amendment 1, §PAC, ¶184.108.40.206.]
- For flights on designated controlled oceanic routes or areas within the Anchorage Arctic, Anchorage Continental, Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Nadi, Oakland Oceanic and Tahiti FIRs, a lateral separation minimum of 93 km (50 NM) may be applied.
- For flights on designated controlled oceanic routes or areas within the Anchorage Arctic, Anchorage Continental, Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Nadi, Oakland Oceanic and Tahiti FIRs, a longitudinal separation minimum of 93 km (50 NM) derived by RNAV may be applied between RNAV-equipped aircraft approved to RNP 10 or better, in accordance with the provisions of the PANS-ATM, 220.127.116.11.
More about this:Required Navigation Performance-10 (RNP-10).
Keep in mind RNP 10 is an exception to the rule of Required Navigation Performance standards, "RNAV 10" retains the "RNP 10" designation for matters of convenience.
Most countries in the Pacific Region are WGS-84 compliant but some are listed by Jeppesen as "unknown." You should check the country's Jeppesen Airway Manual, Air Traffic Control, State Rules and Procedures pages and the http://www.jeppesen.com/company/publications/wgs-84.jsp web site before visiting Nauru, Papua New Guinea, or Timor Leste. More about this: World Geodetic System 84 (WGS-84).
[ICAO Doc 7030 Amendment 1, §PAC, ¶4.2.1.] RVSM shall be applicable in that volume of airspace between FL 290 and FL 410 inclusive in the following FIRs: Anchorage Arctic, Anchorage Continental, Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Easter Island, Los Angeles, Nadi, Oakland, Oakland Oceanic, Seattle, Tahiti and Vancouver.
More about this: Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM).
Some countries use non-standard transition altitude and transition level changeover procedures. In Brunei, Nauru, and the Solomons, for example, the changeover occurs geographically. More about this: Transition Altitude / Layer / Level.
Australian Organized Track Structure (AUSOTS)
[Jeppesen Airway Manual, En Route Data, Pacific, Australian Organized Track Structure (AUSOTS), 26 Nov 2010]
- The Australian Organized Track Structure (AUSOTS) has been developed to help provide airlines with better traffic flows and significantly contribute to airline fuel savings. The AUSOTS will be created and promulgated on a daily basis, considering many variables including wind conditions, as a series of Track Definition Messages (TDM) for the most efficient track between specific international gates and Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. The future will bring further development of the AUSOTS, based on collaboration with participating airlines.
- AUSOTS will be available for all aircraft meeting the minimum requirement of RNP10 or RNP4.
- Any aircraft which loses its RNP capability en route, but is still able to navigate on the Flex Tracks may continue to do so. Aircraft unable to continue navigating on the Flex Tracks will be re-cleared by ATC via the fixed route structure.
- On the occasions when the daily optimum route corresponds completely with a published route, the Trackmaster will still publish these details as a Track Definition Message (TDM) to avoid the risk of confusion over possible lost TDMs.
- While a limited number of AUSOTS tracks will be designated as a specific city pair, the majority will be defined between a specific aerodrome at one end and an area/region at the other.
Central East Pacific Route (CEP) System
[Jeppesen Airway Manual, Pacific Ocean High/Low Altitude En Route Charts 3/4 P(H/L), 12 Oct 12]
- The Central East Pacific (CEP) is the organized route system between Hawaii and California. Seven ATS routes, R-463, R-464, R-465, R-585, R-576, R-577 and R-578 are the primary routes within the CEP.
- Reduced Vertical Separartion Minimum (RVSM) and Required Navigation Performance 10 (RNP-10) are required for aircraft operating within the CEP Route System at FL290 through FL410. Non-approved aircraft can expect FL280 and below or FL430 and above, traffic permitting.
- Operators show approval for RVSM and RNP-10 by annotating block 10 of the ICAO flight plan (equipment) with the letter W and R respectively.
- Flight levels normally assigned in the CEP are in accordance with ICAO Appendix 3a (East odd, West even).
Flexible Pacific Organized Track Systems (PACOTS)
[ICAO Doc 7030 Amendment 1, §PAC, ¶18.104.22.168.]
- To optimize the use of airspace across the Northern, Central and South Pacific, flexible organized track systems may be established within the Fukuoka, Oakland Oceanic, Anchorage Oceanic, Nadi, Tahiti, Auckland Oceanic, Melbourne, Brisbane and Port Moresby FIRs.
- The ACCs providing air traffic service within the concerned FIRs shall provide information to users regarding the PACOTS tracks generated for use. The location of the tracks will depend on traffic demand, prevailing winds, significant weather and other relevant factors. Unless otherwise stated, tracks will apply at FL 290 and above.
- PACOTS track messages to users specifying track details will be disseminated daily by one of the ACCs. Messages will be disseminated in a timely manner to accommodate the flight planning requirements of users. Any subsequent changes will be issued promptly. Pilots are expected to flight plan in accordance with the daily track message.
Note.— PACOTS guidelines containing detailed information on track generation, lateral track spacing, level assignment, position-reporting requirements and other relevant details shall be published in the AIPs or associated supplements of those States which utilize a flexible track system within their airspace or areas of responsibility.
Note: the PACOTS require RNAV 10 (RNP 10) Navigation Performance.
North Pacific Routes (NOPAC)
[Jeppesen Airway Manual Air Traffic Control, State Rules and Procedures, North Pacific (NOPAC) Routes, 7 Jan 2011]
- The NOPAC Route System is comprised of five Air Traffic Service (ATS) routes which transit the North Pacific between Alaska and Japan. The two northern routes are used for westbound traffic. The three southern routes are used for eastbound traffic, except that R-591 or G-344 may be used for westbound aircraft crossing the Fukuoka/Anchorage FIR between 0000UTC and 0600UTC. The routes are as follows: R-220, R-580, A-590, R-591 and G-344.
- Separation Standards
- The primary form of lateral separation within the NOPAC Route System is 25 NM lateral either side of the center line, based on Required Navigation Performance 10 (RNP-10) and 1000' vertical separation (FL290 - FL410) based on Reduced Vertical Separation Minimums (RVSM).
- Lateral separation for Non-RNP10 aircraft and aircraft operating below FL180 is 50 NM lateral either side of the center line. Standard longitudinal separation within the Anchorage Oceanic FIR is 15 minutes "in trail".
- Eastbound - 0700UTC to 2100UTC
- Westbound-1200UTC to 1900UTC an d2200UTC to 0800UTC
Each country departs in some ways with the ICAO standard and common US practices. Pilots should always refer to the Jeppesen Airway Manual, Air Traffic Control, State Rules and Procedures pages for each country on their itineraries for differences with ICAO Standards, Recommended Practices and Procedures. More about this: US versus ICAO.
The following are a sampling of some of the differences, there are many more. You should check the Jeppesen Airway Manual State pages for every country you takeoff, overfly, or land.
[ICAO Doc 7030 Amendment 1, §PAC, ¶9.3.]
9.3.1 The following procedures apply to aircraft operating in the oceanic airspace of the Anchorage Oceanic, Auckland Oceanic, Nadi, Oakland Oceanic and Tahiti FIRs. These procedures are intended to complement and not supersede State procedures/regulations.
9.3.2 In the event of total loss of communication, an aircraft shall:
a) try to re-establish communication by all other means;
b) if all attempts to re-establish communication with ATC are unsuccessful:
1) squawk 7600;
2) if able, broadcast in the blind at suitable intervals: flight identification, flight level, aircraft position (including the ATS route designator or the track code) and intentions on the frequency in use, as well as on frequency 121.5 MHz (or, as a back-up, the VHF inter-pilot air-to-air frequency 123.45 MHz);
3) watch for conflicting traffic both visually and by reference to airborne collision avoidance systems or traffic displays (if equipped);
4) turn on all aircraft exterior lights (commensurate with appropriate operating limitations);
5) maintain the last assigned speed and level for a period of 60 minutes following the aircraft's failure to report its position over a compulsory reporting point (including ADS-C flights), and thereafter adjust speed and altitude in accordance with the filed flight plan;
Note.— In airspace where the strategic lateral offset procedures (SLOP) has been authorized, aircraft experiencing communication failure may also elect to initiate SLOP in accordance with State AIP, including an offset of 1.8 or 3.7 km (1 NM or 2 NM) right of track.
6) Upon exiting oceanic airspace, conform to the relevant State procedures and regulations.
In the event of lost communication, ATC shall maintain separation between the aircraft having the communication failure and other aircraft, based on the assumption that the aircraft having the communication failure will operate in accordance with the procedures in 9.3.2.
These are exceptions to ICAO Lost Comm procedures. More about this: Lost Communications.
Traffic Information Broadcast by Aircraft (TIBA)
Some countries have uncontrolled IFR airspace requiring a "listening watch" procedure on air traffic advisory service frequencies. For one example of many:
[Jeppesen Airway Manual, Air Traffic Control, State Rules and Procedures, Fiji, 3 Oct 2008] The VHF RTF frequency to be used will be promulgated by NOTAM, however, in the case of temporary disruption occurring in controlled airspace, the VHF RTF frequency to be used within the limits of that airspace will be the primary frequency used for the provision of an air traffic control service within that airspace.
The TIBA procedure in New Zealand is fairly standard but the frequency selection can be a chore. Refer to the Jeppesen Airway Manual, Air Traffic Control, State Rules and Procedures, New Zealand.
For more about this: Traffic Information Broadcast by Aircraft (TIBA).
ICAO Doc 7030 - Regional Supplementary Procedures, International Civil Aviation Organization, 2 2008
ICAO Doc 9613 - Performance Based Navigation (PBN) Manual, International Civil Aviation Organization, 2008
Jeppesen Airway Manual