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| | |-+  Landing Lights Question!??
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Author Topic: Landing Lights Question!??  (Read 7519 times)
Love_To_Fly
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« on: January 16, 2006, 02:31:48 PM »

Hey.  I saw something weird today and I thought what better place to ask then liveatc.net! Smiley.

I drive into work every morning passing by Pearson international airport and usually see a couple of planes either take off or land each morning (and afternoon).  This morning I saw one plane coming in for it's landing with two of it's front lights flashing on and off, from one side to the other, kind of like police cruiser headlights when they have their sirens on.  It looked to be a smaller private jet.  Does that mean anything or was he just having fun???
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davolijj
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« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2006, 02:38:34 PM »

Quote from: Love_To_Fly
This morning I saw one plane coming in for it's landing with two of it's front lights flashing on and off, from one side to the other, kind of like police cruiser headlights when they have their sirens on.  It looked to be a smaller private jet.  Does that mean anything or was he just having fun???


There are several small aircraft that have this feature, for example the Piler Arrow III (P28R).  The landing light selector switch has settings for "off," "on," and "alt," (alt referring to alternating).

There are others as well but I can't recall specifically which ones or when a pilot would be likely to use the "alt" setting.
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JD
tyketto
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« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2006, 03:00:46 PM »

I know for a fact that the bulk of the pilots at SWA do this a lot when landing. I see this all the time looking at the arrival stream into the 25s at KLAS, which is how you could tell an SWA arrival from anyone else without having a scanner in tow or listening to 88.5FM at the settee area. I haven't figured out the 'why' part of it yet; but for sure, the 'who' is fairly well covered.

BL.
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JALTO
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« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2006, 03:06:39 PM »

I will second tyketto's reply...as almost ever night I see SWA's flashing the lights as the landing gear is coming down.  Once the gear is down the lights usually go back to solid.

-J
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cal737pilot
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« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2006, 03:11:10 PM »

Many SWA and a few corporate jets have this feature on their aircraft.  Most pilots that use them believe it helps with aircraft recognition.  ie. see-and-avoid.
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KMSY
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« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2006, 03:21:05 PM »

Oh yes I see this all the time with WN birds. I'm right under 28 at MSY and can tell it's them from miles and miles away. It gets your attention.
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Jason
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« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2006, 04:06:49 PM »

What you saw were pulse lights.  The alternating flashing pulse lights enhance situational awareness for other aircraft and make the aircraft more conspicuous.

You'd be surprised how many aircraft have these lights and use them.  Some of the many pilots I know use them anytime they're in the air and some use them below 10,000 feet.  Regardless, they make the aircraft more visible to other a/c.

Some can debate the effectiveness of these lights, but IMO they are very effective.  Better situational awareness is an ever increasing challenge for pilots.

The more help we get for increased situational awareness, the better.

Jason
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Jolly009
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« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2006, 07:15:54 PM »

Tyketto- Yeah SWA loves them on the 25's, and so doeas the corporate Jets landind South...  Even the Helicopter Tour Helos Use them inbound and Outbound LAS.... but mainly the Lead Pilot..

But I agree the more flash, lights, and pops it does the more visual....
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Kevin Schultz
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mdl21483
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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2006, 09:40:12 AM »

flashing the landing lights does work out to make the aircraft more obvious~, like was mentioned sever times before. At first sight, many passengers/onlookers may think what the hells up with the headlights? But when youre a frequent, you realize that the sequencing the lights like that actually helps out alot espically on downwind/base for a 10 or 20 mile final (KHOU gets lots of those daily.) When a plane's that far away, they seem to work better than strobes.

~Mel~
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PHL Approach
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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2006, 02:57:38 PM »

IIRC, SWA only has that option on the 733's and I wanna say the 735's also.
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Tomato
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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2006, 07:42:57 PM »

Love_To_Fly - do you remember what airline or aircraft type this was?  I know you were driving, but still curious... it'd be fun to go and check it out sometime.  Are there any good places to park and watch the aircraft at CYYZ?
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Serving you with CYVR... =)
nfredrich
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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2006, 07:44:56 PM »

C560's where I work ALWAYS depart on ALT... anti-collision protection I guess
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Nick Fredrich
Love_To_Fly
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« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2006, 10:01:52 AM »

Thanks for all the responses!  It appeared to be a private jet.  Just looked kinda weird.. Don't think I've ever seen it before.  I almost thought it was like an emergency flight carrying a heart or something for transplant.

As for watching planes come in, Some people sit just off of Dixie Road south of Derry road ( Midway Blvd / Director Gate ) - You'll be right under the fuselage like 100ft below it..  I'm not sure where else is good.
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Sirclown82
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« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2006, 10:12:13 AM »

Back in A/P school, we watched a video of why the airplanes do this. The alternating lights scare away birds at a farther distance than just always on lights. I think WN has set the lights to alternate automatically for this reason.
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Chris
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« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2006, 02:55:11 PM »

Quote from: Love_To_Fly

As for watching planes come in, Some people sit just off of Dixie Road south of Derry road ( Midway Blvd / Director Gate ) - You'll be right under the fuselage like 100ft below it..  I'm not sure where else is good.


...wow! just like in that fantastic movie "pushing tin"!!!

floating inside the wake turbulence...!
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all'anima de li mortacci vostri!!!
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