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Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA



 
 
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  #1  
Old April 4th 13, 04:43 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

Preface: I'm in favor of allowing team flying in US soaring competition. I hope it can be practiced in such a manner that the next rule cycle will allow team flying in all US contests.

Concern: Air-to-air soaring radio traffic will be more apt to "interfere" with powered aviation management. What efforts should be made towards not having the FAA/FCC bearing down on competition soaring?

Surely the FAA/FCC will not welcome new "interference" and the last thing the individual soaring pilot, contest site and management, and soaring competition in general needs is more government management. The SSA is not responsible for what goes on in the cockpit but this new direction has opened a "Pandora's Box" for all associated.

The 2013 rules allow only regionals to uses air-to-air communication and appropriately only at the organizer’s option. To the 2013 SSA RC, what are your suggestions to implement this practice with minimum bandwidth “footprint”?

Since Euros have the most air-to-air bandwidth useage experience, what policy and procedure do they use for team flying in contests?

Going forward in US competition, what is the best method to select a "team" frequency? Should selecting a frequency be a pilot free-for-all? Should site specific "guidelines" be developed? Can/will the SSA open doors to the FCC/FAA in an effort to help organize site specific "guidelines"?

Last but perhaps most importantly, what are the factual "rights" of US soaring pilots to openly use any 8.33kHz and/or 25kHz spaced frequency?

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  #2  
Old April 4th 13, 04:56 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

Here, Here!

I raised this issue in a previous post but don't believe I got any meaningful response.

US Rules Committee: How do we implement this without "blowing up" our access to what little bandwith we do enjoy?

Tim McAllister EY
  #3  
Old April 4th 13, 05:23 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Bill D
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

On Thursday, April 4, 2013 9:56:06 AM UTC-6, wrote:
Here, Here!



I raised this issue in a previous post but don't believe I got any meaningful response.



US Rules Committee: How do we implement this without "blowing up" our access to what little bandwith we do enjoy?



Tim McAllister EY


Basic questions: What information would team flying pilots need to routinely communicate? Is a voice channel the best way to do it or would a digital radio modem link automatically exchanging basic data like position, altitude, airspeed and vario in real-time be a better option leaving voice for more strategic discussions?

As for air-band frequencies, as I understand it, the FCC has assigned it to the FAA to use as it sees fit. Of the available 760 frequencies in the air-band, only a handful are used in any given geographic area. The FAA has been known to assign frequencies for a limited time specific purpose. I expect a 10 day contest would have no difficulty getting a dozen or so frequencies temporarily assigned for its use.
  #4  
Old April 4th 13, 06:22 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

In case of team flying, the intent of air-to-air communication should be voice only. Please do not promote any more "eyes to the panel" electronics; there are two many already.

Best case would provide a private voice frequency for each team. Therefore, the most case scenario would be total entries divided by two. For a big regional or a national contest a reasonable number would be 35 frequencies. An international contest would require more.

Again, no more "eyes to the panel" electronics please.

Ben
  #5  
Old April 4th 13, 06:34 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
John Cochrane[_3_]
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

On Apr 4, 12:22*pm, wrote:
In case of team flying, the intent of air-to-air communication should be *voice only. Please do not promote any more "eyes to the panel" electronics; there are two many already.

Best case would provide a private voice frequency for each team. Therefore, the most case scenario would be total entries divided by two. For a big regional or a national contest a reasonable number would be 35 frequencies. An international contest would require more.

Again, no more "eyes to the panel" electronics please.

Ben


123.5 and 122.75 are fully legal. What others can be used varies from
location to location.

My hope is that for smaller contests 123.5 can emerge as a general
chat frequency.

Two-pilot "pair" flying is very difficult, and not that productive
until you get a lot of practice. I hope that p-p communication will
evolve to larger groups and more informal communication and mentoring,
where a common chat frequency would work.

FM walkie talkies are cheap and work in the air. Pairs who want to
talk all the time might try those, so they can monitor contest
frequencies and also not drain their batteries.

John Cochrane
  #6  
Old April 5th 13, 04:20 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

With respect, the belief 1-1/2 frequencies will handle all the bandwidth of competition P-PC is shocking.

My suspicion is there will be considerable bandwidth use which will only reduce after seasons of practice and experience. It is also my belief the lack of dedicated P-PC frequencies will create generous "road rage" and interrupt pilot concentration; something competition soaring absolutely does not need. Many pilots already "mute" their radios with just the current distraction of 123.3 and 123.5. Imagine the increase in distraction with the addition of P-PC

I'm all for team flying but its my belief SSA let this one out of the oven half baked without including provisions for FCC/FAA dedicated P-PC frequencies.




  #7  
Old April 5th 13, 05:41 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Mike the Strike
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

As I've mentioned before, 123.5 is our field frequency and is shared by a number of other users. 123.3 is often virtually unusable since it was allocated to a local commercial service for communicating with their fleet of aircraft. You have to sit through high-power transmissions of Hobbs readings, arrival times and destinations before you can get a word in edgewise.

I'm not sure what frequency would work in Arizona, but not these two!

Mike
  #8  
Old April 5th 13, 02:26 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

On Thursday, April 4, 2013 11:20:06 PM UTC-4, wrote:
With respect, the belief 1-1/2 frequencies will handle all the bandwidth of competition P-PC is shocking. My suspicion is there will be considerable bandwidth use which will only reduce after seasons of practice and experience. It is also my belief the lack of dedicated P-PC frequencies will create generous "road rage" and interrupt pilot concentration; something competition soaring absolutely does not need. Many pilots already "mute" their radios with just the current distraction of 123.3 and 123.5. Imagine the increase in distraction with the addition of P-PC I'm all for team flying but its my belief SSA let this one out of the oven half baked without including provisions for FCC/FAA dedicated P-PC frequencies.


The competition rules committee, in response to strong lobbying by a number of people, agreed to permit P to P communication in regionals, subject to contest organizers determining it would be appropriate for their contest.
The issue of available frequencies is not new. It is one of the reasons that this this initiative was not undertaken previously. Sporting considerations are another.
Each "solution" to the issues related to P to P communication and associated team flying efforts has complications. This is an opportunity to try some of those out and see if there is a practical way to implement team flying,IF the pilots determine they want it long term.
UH
  #9  
Old April 5th 13, 06:13 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
John Cochrane[_3_]
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA


The competition rules committee, in response to strong lobbying by a number of people, agreed to permit P to P communication in regionals, subject to contest organizers determining it would be appropriate for their contest.
The issue of available frequencies is not new. It is one of the reasons that this this initiative was not undertaken previously. Sporting considerations are another.
Each "solution" to the issues related to P to P communication and associated team flying efforts has complications. This is an opportunity to try some of those out and see if there is a practical way to implement team flying,IF the pilots determine they want it long term.
UH


Like Hank said... The RC didn't issue a whole list of procedures and
frequencies, because those will vary tremendously from contest to
contest. A 5 glider sports class regional doing some mentoring is
different from a 30 glider super-regional with US team pilots
practicing pair flying. The RC job is also primarily to work on what
works from a sporting or safety perspective. And we don't know ahead
of time what frequencies work, how much demand there is to talk, etc.
etc. This is an experiment, and we need pilots interested in the
project to find out if air frequencies are a serious problem, and if
so how to solve the problem.

John Cochrane
  #10  
Old April 7th 13, 12:23 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
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Default Air-to-air communication and the FCC/FAA

RC...your service and dedication to competition soaring is greatly appreciated. It's a thankless job with the payoff being too many servings of criticism. Please know my criticism is not personal.

My concerns remain however. If only the SSA had the manpower and "wherewithal" to lay ground work with the FAA to open temporary frequencies for use in site specific contests.

So, when the horse is dead, its time to get off.


 




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