Wed, Oct 06, 2010
Wake Vortices Predicted To Be "More Substantial" From New
The FAA has established procedures requiring 10 miles of
separation between Boeing's 787 and 747-8 airplanes and aircraft
departing or landing behind them. The minimum en-route spacing
behind one of Boeing's new airplanes is set at five miles.
In an internal notice to air traffic controllers, the FAA says
"(s)tudies indicate that wake vortices generated by the B748 and
possibly by the B787 (all variants) may be more substantial than
those of aircraft in the “Heavy” wake turbulence
category. The FAA Flight Standards Service has not yet issued final
standards for either aircraft. Pending the issuance of such
standards, the ATO will continue to issue interim guidance to
support the operation of the B748, B783, B788, and B789 aircraft in
U.S. controlled airspace."
According to the notice, the procedures are based in part on
guidance received from the International Civil Aviation
Organization and the joint FAA/Euro-Control Wake Turbulence
Steering Group that studied the wake vortices of the Airbus 380-800
(A388) in 2006. The B748 is 7 percent heavier than the B747-400
(B744) version and 27 percent lighter than the Airbus A388.
The B787 (all variants) maximum certificated takeoff weight is
approximately one-third that of the Boeing 748. The analyses of
computational models suggest that the B748 wake vortices are
similar to those generated by the B744. The separation standards
and procedures contained in this notice are
conservative. Final guidance will become available once the flight
test data have been evaluated.
The notice is applicable the Boeing 747-800 (B748) and three
variants of the Boeing 787 (B783, B788, and B789) operations, and
has a published expiration date of October 31, 2011.
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