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Edward Berkley

atc-discussion Better way to improve PDC via text?

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Edward Berkley

Hello all,

I was finding a more realistic way to give out PDC's via text. I thought of using these two messages:

.pdc1 .msg $aircraft $dep PDC: $aircraft CLRD TO $arr $deprwy via $sid INIT ALT: $alt squawk $asquawk ATIS $atiscode NO READBACK REQUIRED. If you're happy with this PDC, please verify by replying to this message, saying: "ACCEPT".

 

If they reply with 'accept' then I send out this second message.


.pdc2 .msg $aircraft Thank you, $aircraft. Contact $callsign on frequency $com when FULLY ready to push and start with stand number, ATIS info, aircraft type AND current QNH

I preferably wanted all of the important information from the second message into the first message. However, I discover that euroscope has a word limit as to how long your messages can be.

I'm wondering what you guys think of this procedure. Are vatsim pilots very responsive? As well, is there a way to automatically send out the second message by a somewhat means of detection from the pilot when he/she says 'accept'?

I hope what I just said makes sense. 

 

Many thanks!

 

 

Edited by Edward Berkley

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Adam Farquharson

The following is in the Heathrow moodle course and is the PDC that I usually use but there are others that were posted around the times of CTP that I'm sure someone else will probably be able to send.

.pdc .msg $aircraft $dep PDC: $aircraft CLRD TO $arr OFF $deprwy VIA $sid SQUAWK $asquawk ATIS $atiscode NO READBACK REQUIRED Contact $callsign on frequency $com when FULLY ready to push and start with stand number, aircraft type AND current QNH.

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James Yuen

@Edward Berkley That's actually a really good idea actually! I'd agree it's very realistic and for GND controllers/new S1's - it would be a good way to understand how it works.

PDC's have been tested with old systems (c. 2012?) and the conclusion, back then, was that it increased workload than decreased. Many London controllers use PDCs to reduce their workload significantly and therefore, the one message compromise would work better given VATSIMisms.

The 'two message' system is already adapted within vSMR and Hoppie, which is now integrated within the FSLabs A320. Many pilots are using that now so that is a great alternative/complement with the existing PDC via PM system.

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Edward Berkley
On 28/09/2019 at 15:10, James Yuen said:

@Edward Berkley That's actually a really good idea actually! I'd agree it's very realistic and for GND controllers/new S1's - it would be a good way to understand how it works.

PDC's have been tested with old systems (c. 2012?) and the conclusion, back then, was that it increased workload than decreased. Many London controllers use PDCs to reduce their workload significantly and therefore, the one message compromise would work better given VATSIMisms.

The 'two message' system is already adapted within vSMR and Hoppie, which is now integrated within the FSLabs A320. Many pilots are using that now so that is a great alternative/complement with the existing PDC via PM system.

Glad you like the idea. I guess it's best suited for delivery/ground and probably not for tower and above. Thanks!

 

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Nathaniel Laurence

Hi, can I just make a suggestion to this, because from my experience using PDC is used when it is busy, for example when someone is on London bandbox and doesn't have time for lengthy clearences. Because recently I have seen a Manchester ground controller using PDC with four aircraft on the ground. the reason why I think this is a bad move is because the pilot has not requested it, and a lot of the times when people are issuing PDC clearences they do not fully understand how to use it, for example you cannot issue a PDC clearence when there is a runway change about to come into effect etc. I am fully up for London using it because they are busy, but if you are struggling to control as ground at an aerodrome then it isn't the best habit to get into, because you need to issue voice clearences during your exam. The Hoppies ACARS CPDLC is a good thing to use though because the pilot has requested it and is therefore expecting a CPDLC clearence, otherwise pilots are wanting to have a voice clearence. I believe (but may be wrong) that in real life the PDC is accompanied by a unique identifier so that you as a controller know that the pilot has recieved the correct clearence and not an incorrect clearence or an old one.

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Fraser Cooper

I think GND/DEL should have the capacity to give out voice clearances. 

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George Peppard
2 hours ago, Fraser Cooper said:

I think GND/DEL should have the capacity to give out voice clearances. 

This!

In the real world™ PDC is always initiated by the pilot. On VATSIM it can be used by busy controllers (CTR, APP) covering ADC top-down to ease frequency congestion. I am of the opinion that it should not be used by GND and DEL controllers to be lazy!

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Michael Benson
On 30/10/2019 at 18:53, George Peppard said:

In the real world™ PDC ... used by GND and DEL controllers to be lazy!

😏

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Simon Kelsey

@Michael Benson could confirm, but I think in reality PDC is (or can be) pretty much automated -- so the request is sent by the pilot, the computer generates a clearance and sends it back all without any controller intervention (unless it can't, in which case it sends back "revert to voice").

In theory this could work on VATSIM too -- PDC request comes in via Hoppie, Euroscope knows the departure runway, SID and squawk, the route could be automatically checked against a database (e.g. SRD + any additional routes) and if it matches then it automatically pings back the clearance; if not the pilot gets "revert to voice". That really would ease controller workload!

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Michael Benson

As usual, you're spot on Simon.

If the pilot entered data matches that on the FDE the PDC is automatically sent, there is zero ATCO interaction.

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Alex Beavil

In essence, one of the main reasons i've used PDCs is to reduce my workload on GND/DEL, by sending out a clearance that is "fire and forget". It is rare to be in a situation where you're needing to reduce workload in this way, but we don't have a eurocontrol computer assigning CTOTs to every plane on the network, so it does become a requirement.

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Lenny Colton
On 30/10/2019 at 18:53, George Peppard said:

This!

In the real world™ PDC is always initiated by the pilot. On VATSIM it can be used by busy controllers (CTR, APP) covering ADC top-down to ease frequency congestion. I am of the opinion that it should not be used by GND and DEL controllers to be lazy!

I think there are circumstances where TWR or VERY occasionally GND may find reason for PDCs to be used. Case in point: The week AFV launched, I was on KK TWR, GND logged off. I was left with about 45 departures on the ground, so naturally I sent out PDCs, since I was top down with about 50-55 on frequency. I can see a situation (such as CTP if DEL has a software crash) where GND may use it, but it would be very rare. DEL’s entire job is clearances, so i don’t see why they’d send PDCs, or even want to.

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Callum Presley
1 hour ago, Lenny Colton said:

DEL’s entire job is clearances, so i don’t see why they’d send PDCs, or even want to.

I would say it’s only a small part of their job if we actually do GMP properly!

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Lenny Colton
On 03/11/2019 at 11:32, Callum Presley said:

I would say it’s only a small part of their job if we actually do GMP properly!

Except in very exceptional circumstances, on VATSIM, DEL generally gives standard and requests non-standard clearances, and assigns stands. They are rarely required to manage slots, so it still doesn't seem like PDCs would be necessary...

Edited by Lenny Colton

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Robert Terrace
On 31/10/2019 at 22:08, Simon Kelsey said:

@Michael Benson could confirm, but I think in reality PDC is (or can be) pretty much automated -- so the request is sent by the pilot, the computer generates a clearance and sends it back all without any controller intervention (unless it can't, in which case it sends back "revert to voice").

In theory this could work on VATSIM too -- PDC request comes in via Hoppie, Euroscope knows the departure runway, SID and squawk, the route could be automatically checked against a database (e.g. SRD + any additional routes) and if it matches then it automatically pings back the clearance; if not the pilot gets "revert to voice". That really would ease controller workload!

I've seen something similar floating around, I'm just trying to see if I can find it again and get something that can be worked on from it.

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