A program was initiated by ICAO in 1982 involving worldwide studies to assess the feasibility of a reduction of the Vertical Separation Minima (VSM) above FL290 from 2,000 feet to 1,000 feet.
The principal benefits which the implementation of the reduced VSM were expected to provide were:
A theoretical doubling of the airspace capacity, between FL290 and FL410; and
The opportunity for aircraft to operate at closer to the optimum flight levels with the resulting fuel economies.
The program relies on the carriage and serviceability of specified aircraft equipment and the existence of appropriate operating procedures to ensure that the risk of loss of separation is no greater than it would be outside RVSM airspace.
Between 1997 and 2005 RVSM was implemented in all of Europe, North Africa, Southeast Asia, North America, South America, and over the North Atlantic, South Atlantic, and Pacific Oceans.
Approval for RVSM Operations
State airworthiness authorities are responsible for verifying that an aircraft is technically capable of meeting and maintaining the stringent altimetry system performance requirements. Crews must be trained in appropriate procedures in RVSM airspace. Providing all these requirements are met, an authority will issue an RVSM Operational Approval. Operators indicate RVSM approval by filing a W in field 10 of the ICAO model flight plan. It is a violation of ICAO European regional supplementary procedures for a non-approved aircraft to file a W. The Regional Monitoring Agency (RMA) is responsible for verifying the approval status of aircraft operating in RVSM airspace and reporting violations to the appropriate state authority.
An important element of the certification process is the confirmation of the aircraft height keeping performance across the entire operational flight envelope. The flight envelope covers all combinations of speed, altitude and weight/atmospheric pressure ratio that the aircraft would expect to operate across in RVSM airspace. The assessment of the aircraft performance across the flight envelope, together with the service bulletin, continuing airworthiness instructions and the amendment to the aircraft flight manual are collectively known as the RVSM approval data package. Confirmation of the RVSM approval data package is a fundamental requirement before any RVSM operational approval is issued.
An operator shall not operate an aeroplane in defined portions of airspace where, based on regional air navigation agreement, a vertical separation minimum 300 m (1000ft) applies unless approved to do so by the Authority (RVSM Approval). EASA IR-OPS SPA.RVSM.100 and SPA.RVSM.110, EU-OPS 1.241 See also EU-OPS 1.872.
Prior to granting the RVSM approval... the State shall be satisfied that:
a) the vertical navigation performance capability of the aeroplane satisfies the (laid down requirements);
b) the operator has instituted appropriate procedures in respect of continued airworthiness (maintenance and repair) practices and programmes; and
c) the operator has instituted appropriate flight crew procedures for operation in RVSM airspace.
Note: An RVSM approval is valid globally on the understanding that any operating procedures specific to a given region will be stated in the Operations Manual or appropriate crew guidance. (ICAO Annex 6 Part I Chapter 7, Para 7.2.5.)
An operator shall ensure that aeroplanes operated in RVSM airspace are equipped with:
Within RVSM airspace (between FL290 and FL410 inclusive) the vertical separation minimum is:
1000ft (300m) between RVSM-approved aircraft, and
2000ft (600m) between non-RVSM approved state aircraft and any other aircraft operating within RVSM airspace.
2000ft (600m) between non-RVSM aircraft operating as general air traffic (GAT) and any other aircraft within RVSM airspace.
There is no exemption for state aircraft to operate as GAT within RVSM airspace with a 1000 ft vertical separation minimum without an RVSM approval. The absence of such approval does require a separation of 2000 ft to be observed. State aircraft which are exempted from having to meet the RVSM Minimum Aircraft System Performance Specification (MASPS) in Field 18 of the ICAO FPL, shall request special handling by filling “STS/NONRVSM”.
Formation flights are to be considered non-RVSM compliant irrespective of the RVSM status of the individual aircraft within the formation and are not permitted within RVSM airspace with a 1000 ft vertical separation minimum.
Contingency procedures when unable to maintain RVSM
The pilots shall notify ATC of any equipment failure, weather hazards such as severe turbulence etc., which may affect the ability to maintain the cleared level or the RVSM requirements. When an aircraft operating in RVSM Airspace encounters severe turbulence due to weather or wake vortex which the pilot believes will impact the aircraft’s capability to maintain its cleared flight level, the pilot shall inform ATC. ATC is required to establish either an appropriate horizontal separation minimum, or an increased vertical separation minimum of 2000ft;
Where a meteorological forecast is predicting severe turbulence within the RVSM Airspace, ATC shall determine whether RVSM should be suspended, and, if so, the period of time, and specific flight level(s) and/or area.
When notified by ATC of an assigned altitude deviation of more than 300ft (90 m), the pilot shall take action to return to the cleared level as quickly as possible.
In the event of a pilot advising that the aircraft is no longer capable of RVSM operations, it is particularly important that the first ATS unit made aware of the failure performs the necessary co-ordination with subsequent ATS units.
RVSM related phraseology
ATC wishes to determine the RVSM status of a flight - CONFIRM RVSM APPROVED
Pilot response in case that the flight is RVSM approved - AFFIRM RVSM
Pilot response in case that the flight is not RVSM approved - NEGATIVE RVSM
Pilot of State aircraft responding that the flight is not RVSM approved - NEGATIVE RVSM STATE AIRCRAFT
ATC refuses to issue a clearance into RVSM Airspace - UNABLE CLEARANCE INTO RVSM AIRSPACE, MAINTAIN [or DESCEND TO, or CLIMB TO] FL ...
Pilot reporting severe turbulence / weather affecting ability to maintain RVSM height keeping requirements - UNABLE RVSM DUE TURBULENCE
Pilot reporting equipment degradation below RVSM requirements - UNABLE RVSM DUE EQUIPMENT
ATC requesting the pilot to report when able to resume RVSM - REPORT ABLE TO RESUME RVSM
Pilot ready to resume RVSM after equipment/weather contingency - READY TO RESUME RVSM
ICAO Annex 6 Part I Chapter 7 Paras 7.24 - 7.27 and Appendix 2;
Como tiene componentes de GPS, comunicación y navegación por radio integrados directamente en el sistema, ambos consolidan los componentes en una ubicación centralizada y, por la misma razón, se vuelven potencialmente más costosos de reparar o reemplazar. El sistema tiene el potencial de reducir el tiempo de inactividad ya que los componentes clave, como AHRS, ADC y PFD, son modulares y fáciles de reemplazar. El diseño del sistema también evita que la falla de un solo componente se "conecte en cascada" a través de otros componentes.
El G1000 es compatible con la última tecnología de sistema de visión mejorada (EVS). Los sistemas de visión mejorados usan cámaras térmicas e infrarrojas para ver imágenes en tiempo real y ayudan a convertir a los obscuros como el mal tiempo, la noche, la niebla, el polvo y los apagones en mejores imágenes que pueden ver 8-10 veces más lejos que a simple vista.
Hay algunas preocupaciones de seguridad con todas las cabinas de cristal, como la falla de las pantallas de vuelo primarias (PFD). El sistema Garmin G1000 ofrece un modo reversible que presentará toda la instrumentación de vuelo principal en la pantalla restante. Además, hay múltiples unidades de GPS y redundancia electrónica incorporada ampliamente en todo el diseño del sistema.
Capacitación y recursos de capacitación.
Volar cualquier avión de cabina de vidrio requiere entrenamiento de transición para familiarizar al piloto con los sistemas del avión. El entrenamiento de transición es más efectivo cuando un piloto se prepara con anticipación.4 La mayoría de los fabricantes de aviación general que usan el sistema G1000 tienen programas de capacitación de la FAA Industry Training Standards (FITS) para pilotos que hacen la transición a sus aviones. Se recomienda la capacitación conforme a FAA FITS para cualquier piloto que haga la transición al G1000 o cualquier otra cabina de cristal antes de operar la aeronave en condiciones meteorológicas instrumentales (IMC) o si opera una aeronave de cabina de vidrio por primera vez. Los aviones de cabina de vidrio pueden no ser adecuados para el entrenamiento primario.
Uno de los recursos más efectivos para prepararse para el entrenamiento de transición G1000 incluye el software del simulador Garmin. Además, algunas escuelas de vuelo ahora tienen dispositivos de entrenamiento de vuelo G1000 (FTD) que proporcionan una simulación realista.
Todas las guías de piloto más recientes de Garmin G1000 están disponibles en formato PDF para su descarga gratuita desde Garmin.
This 93-page document covers all of the changes in detail. For a full list of requirements and regulation relief, read each relevant section. This SFAR was due to expire on June 30th for most regulations.
On June 18th FAA Deputy Administrator Daniel Elwell announced in an online General Aviation Safety Town Hall that a rule is in the works to extend (for a second time) airman medical certificates that expired during the coronavirus pandemic. AOPA's President Mark Baker, a panelist during the town hall, stated that SFAR guidance for general aviation is a top policy initiative they're advocating for.
How and when to end the SFAR is a complex issue for the FAA to tackle. They don't want everyone falling under a singular exemption to go non-current or non-legal all on the same day. Yet, the SFAR will have to end at some point. Industry leaders like EAA, AOPA, ALPA, and more will be tasked with planning next-steps with the FAA.
ILS CAT I is all well known for the GA pilot. Its DH does not go below 200 feet above TDZE, and requires a minimum visibility of no less than 800 meters or an RVR of 550 meters, depending on the case, which can be taken from instruments either at the TDZ or a midfield position, which is not allowed for CAT II or III operations.
Now, the GA pilot is normally not used to the CAT II and III operations, mainly because the requirements for these are more complex and cost restrictive. So from now on, we will look at it as commercial pilots.
A good thing to know for the professional commercial pilot is that these minimums and requirements for the ILS CAT II and III are not the same for all operators, the authority will assign minimums and requirements for each one operator individually, although they might be setup by a guideline. Thus the importance of rechecking your company’s CAT II and III policies. Adding to this, is a must to know where your company is authorized to perform such approaches, since you might not be approved to fly an approach to certain airports.
CAT II and III require special equipment to be installed in the ground facilities and in the aircraft, as well as special training is required for flight crews. Again, requirements depending on each company, ground equipment availability and aircraft system configuration.
But how about those CAT III a – b – c sub-indexes? Well, they are just more restrictions about DH/RA and RVR minimums, depending on each case. The FAA considers that these cases depend on weather conditions, where “visual references are adequate for manual rollout in CAT IIIa, to an area where visual references are inadequate even for taxi operations in CAT IIIc” (p. 4-64).
Also to be noted that by 2017 no operator had been approved for the CAT III-c operation in the USA.
Aviation Administration. (2017). Instrument Procedures Handbook.
Recuperado de: https://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/handbooks_manuals/aviation/