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Edition January 2011
The Airbus Safety Magazine

q What is stall?
How a pilot should react
in front of a stall situation
q Minimum control speed tests
on A380
q Radio Altimeter erroneous values
q Automatic NAV engagement
at Go Around

Issue 11

2 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety

Safety First
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... Stéphane Granger / Eric Jeanpierre Today......The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 3 Yannick MALINGE Chief Product Safety Officer Editorial For those of you who knew Yves Benoist.. I have no doubt you will join me in appreciation of his remarkable Automatic NAV engagement at Go Around........ 4 at Airbus for 16 years.. Hangar Flying (now Safety First)..... Throughout my time working with him. in 1994.... 15 still today the most visible part of Yves’ heritage. 11 In addition to this.. it is my sad Contents duty to inform you that Yves passed away suddenly.............. he passed on What is stall? three main lessons: investigations require rigor.... ....... before retiring in 2004... Yves stressed the importance of the dissemination of information and sharing of lessons Claude Lelaie learnt..... The Airbus Safety Magazine at the end of December........... These lessons remain valid today.. Minimum control speed tests on A380. which are Radio Altimeter erroneous values. 19 achievements............... Marc Baillion / Lorraine De Baudus Our thoughts at this time are with Yves’ family.... Yves held the position of Vice-President Flight Safety Information ..... ....... despite the greater challenge imposed Jacques Rosay by today’s environment........... thorough How a pilot should react in front of a stall situation.......... This led him. 5 technical understanding and patience.. to you and your family.. our challenge is to build upon Yves’ legacy.... Yannick MALINGE Chief Product Safety Officer . Let me wish you a happy new year.. to launch the annual Airbus Flight Safety Conference as well as the Airbus Safety Magazine.........

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which indicate that Relative wind this phenomenon may not be prop- erly understood and managed in the aviation community. recommendations for harmonized procedures and appropriate train- ing. ne facturers have agreed together to The lift coefficient increases amend their stall procedures and to as a function of the Angle of reinforce the training. where it starts to aircraft manufacturers will publish decrease. Maximum sociated to the stall. the main aircraft manu. Lift ly published new procedures. called group gathering Authorities and Maximum lift. . As a con. a given V = True Air Speed speed and a given altitude. The lift A wing generates a lift equal to 1/2ρSV²Cl. and the recent. This article aims at reminding the aerodynamic phenomenon as. the lift is Cl = lift coefficient of the wing only linked to the AoA. Lift 2.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 5 Jacques ROSAY VP Chief Test Pilot What is stall? How a pilot should react in front of a stall situation Lift is function of 1. Introduction • Speed • Density Angle of • Wing area The worldwide air transport fleet • Angle of Attack has recently encountered a number Attack of stall events. With: Angle of Attack ρ = air density S = wing surface reference For a given configuration. A working Attack (AoA) up to a value. Cho rd li sequence.

maximum lift separated point CI Not stalled Stalled Maximum lift Lift Critical Angle of Attack Angle of Attack AoA . the erratic positions of to separate. profile. Beyond this point. the flow cones on this A380 wing during a stall test show that the flow is separated. The wing is stalled. stall point. The stall phenomenum The linear part of the curve corre. the airflow starts video footage). 6°.6 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety 3. steady flow separated flow CI CI Not stalled Stalled Not stalled Stalled Maximum Maximum lift lift Lift Lift Critical Angle Critical Angle of Attack of Attack Angle of Attack AoA Angle of Attack AoA When the AoA reaches the value of On this picture (extracted from a the maximum Cl. the lift decreases sponds to a steady airflow around as the flow is separated from the wing the wing.

reached the AoA SW. When the Mach number increases. for a given AoA wing. 2). which tends Angle of Attack AoA to increase in level at high Mach number. or a strong buffeting which. elevator input. DIRECT LAW. LAW or to DIRECT LAW. they revert to ALTERNATE q When the aerodynamic flow on increasing Mach number. permanently in DIRECT LAW. a wing stalls at a given Angle of Attack (AoA) called AoA STALL. applies on the elevators the appro. the aural Not stalled Stalled proaches the AoA STALL. this phenomenon occurs at a Stall Warning Critical Angle lower Angle of Attack and is more of Attack prominent when the Mach number is higher. 1). is an indication of is NOT directly a speed issue. Protections FBW aircraft in DIRECT LAW. Figure 2 In ALTERNATE and CI q When the AoA increases and ap. the EFCS takes sure the protection against the stall. the wing generates a cer- tain level of buffeting. Protections against the stall in In both ALTERNATE and against the stall in alternate and DIRECT LAW. the only possi- ble mean to recover a normal flow Equally. as to counter its effect. the flight controls cannot ensure reduced. The effect of the Lift pitch up is a self-tendency of the aircraft to increase its Angle of At- tack without further inputs on the elevators.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 7 4. they to get out of a stall. the wing is stalled. into account the natural pitch based upon the aural Stall Warning up effect of the wing for this (SW). Some important Figure 1 In NORMAL LAW. the AoA STALL (fig. tional aircraft The triggering of the Stall Warn- In NORMAL LAW. for a given Mach number In both cases. are in the same situation as the 6. Stall Warning is set at a value lower than Maximum tain cases. in particular in by definition lower than the AoA and limits it to a value (AoA MAX) case of sensor or computer failure. STALL. Generally. which is takes into account the actual AoA tain malfunctions. value lower than the AoA STALL. MAX Critical Angle q When approaching the AoA of Attack STALL. . limitation to account for the Depending on the nature of the fail- reduction of the AoA STALL with ure. following cer. a phenomenon of pitch AoA STALL lift up occurs as a result of a change in the distribution of the lift along the wingspan. Knowing those two last character. 5. CI Not stalled Stalled things to remember the EFCS limits the AoA to a value lower Maximum about the stall than AoA STALL lift q For a given configuration and at Lift a given Mach number. an incipient stall condition. and if encountered. which is lower than fbw aircraft FBW and conven. in cer. It Mach number and this AoA. the aural SW is set normal law on direct law on at a value called AoA Stall Warn- ing (AoA SW). q Stall is an AoA problem only. priate longitudinal pre-command The conventional aircraft are istics is absolutely paramount. the pilot has to en- regime is to decrease the AoA at a and a given AoA. Angle of Attack AoA q The only mean to counter the pitch up is to apply a nose down The EFCS adjusts the AoA MAX the protections against the stall. and that the AoA has to be lower than AoA STALL (fig. the value AoA of the AoA STALL decreases. the Electronic ing just means that the AoA has Flight Controls System (EFCS) On FBW aircraft. and they dictate the only possible way regarding the stall protection.

ations if it is applied once the air- number. the pilots should react the same way for both “ap- high altitude and well reproduced in the simula- proach to stall” and “stall” situations. at high altitude. 5). 3). and stall the Stall Warning threshold has ing the approach of the stall is the been crossed. for this situa. ing. can work in certain conditions if If the anemometric information the pilot reacts immediately to the used to set the AoA SW is erro. tion is needed. in cruise at high Mach tude level flight deceleration at idle number and high altitude. Margin to the is determined to maintain the alti- Several accidents happened where the “approach to stall” procedure Stall Warning in tude. Obviously. the thrust actually reaches TOGA but adding thrust in order to increase As a consequence. the AoA. the of aural SW. to a conditions. Hence. How to react mended FL. the speed leads to an initial adverse stalls. Mach number and in DIRECT LAW on an A340-600 For those reasons. tor consists in performing a low alti- Typically. as in RVSM space the craft has reached the aerodynamic value such that the warning occurs use of the AP is mandatory. Difference tion. between an approach to stall and an buffeting”. pilots to know that the onset of the level lower than the maximum rec. just before encountering the pitch failures leading to the loss of the up effect and the buffeting. training consisted in a controlled stall or already stalled. 4). . for the same very slow. q In clean configuration. A 4. in The results of such a manoeuvre by decreasing the pitch order. At high Mach cantly increased. the pilot reacts immediately to the The AoA decrease may be obtained The encounter of turbulence in. it is difficult to know strong buffeting. even if command (fig. longitudinal effect. when in ALTER. figuration is exacerbated. ALTERNATE or DIRECT LAW. in the following chapter). This is obtained directly and the AoA STALL. that be considered. aircraft further into the stall. and therefore the AoA margin towards AoA SW will be signifi. the aircraft craft is flying close to the maxi. the AoA will be lower.000 ft margin is to thrust increase on the speed rise is that the aircraft is stalling. many cases (this will be developed no reason to overreact to its trigger. it is not unlikely the speed and hence to decrease the ducing the thrust is to reduce the that it reaches the AoA SW value. AP mandates to descend below the Even if the traditional procedure RVSM vertical limit. or if he is not too adamant on neous. What is paramount is to decrease gin between the actual cruise AoA der to maintain the altitude. SW. the clue indicat. indirectly by increasing the speed.8 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety Knowing what the SW is. the AoA SW is set at a In addition. if the the aircraft is already stalled. induce temporary peaks of AoA pilot reacts immediately to the SW. if the pilot makes significant thrust at the SW in order to increase Conversely. it is to be noticed that. Then. there is a small mar. and then to push the THR levers to TOGA while 9. longitudinal effect would bring the Equally. it is rec. so that the phenomenom there is no reason to be scared. there is For those reasons. Stall Warning keeping the altitude. pilot reacts with a delay of 2 sec. a thrust increase was applied when SW leading to intermittent onsets q In approach configuration. (20 seconds later). when the air. the effect of the aural Stall Warning does not mean ommended. as 8. In the remainder The traditional approach to stall if the aircraft is still approaching to of this document. such a procedure leads The value of the AoA SW depends to potentially unrecoverable situ- on the Mach number. AOA is not the proper reaction in AoA (fig. in particular at turbulence This shows that increasing the situation possibly unrecoverable. SW by commanding TOGA. minimum altitude loss. even for specialists. the SW will not sound at the proper AoA. NATE or DIRECT LAW. if the increase further the AoA (fig. which trends to mum recommended altitude. and cruise Mach number. the major is- sue comes from the fact that once mentioned above. it is not unlikely that turbulence might q In approach configuration. continuing to pull on the stick in or. In that case. the first effect of re- longitudinal inputs. be higher. Experience shows that if the pilot 7. in similar high FL cruise onds to the SW. followed by a power recovery with actual stall is not easy to determine. are: the margin with the AoA SW is The pitch control is a direct AoA even smaller. It is important to know that if such going beyond the value of the AoA the aircraft reaches AoA stall -2°. It is absolutely essential for the ommended to fly at a cruise flight In addition. the IAS will described above for the clean con- that just a gentle and smooth reac. the aircraft stalls. at or close to the maximum recom- until the SW is triggered. speed. A practical exercise done in flight actually stalled. any stall (see next chapter). “SW” must be read as “strong deceleration to the Stall Warning. when duces quick variations of the AoA. this procedure may lead to the was applied when the aircraft was cruise at high stall.

increase the reaction. release the decrease the pitch attitude by about As an answer to the stall situation. If the SW situation occurs with This generic procedure will be pub- SECOND: When the stall clues high thrust. the reduction ers. ATR. and the main aircraft manufactur- until out of stall (no longer have During manoeuvres. reducing the thrust may This new procedure has been estab- speed if needed. including Airbus. Boeing. have es- an action in the same direction on just by releasing the backpressure tablished a new generic procedure the longitudinal trim may be need. the first reaction q Get rid of TOGA as first action when the SW is triggered should be q Focus on AoA reduction. stall indications). q One single procedure to cover ALL stall conditions In practice. back pressure on stick or column two or three degrees in order to de. a working group gathering the FAA and apply a nose down pitch input crease the AoA below the AoA SW. in straight flight with- out stick input. If anything. . with engines below the wings. have disappeared. due to the thrust pitch effect. In certain cases. on the stick. applicable to all aircraft types. Progressively be necessary. Don’t forget that thrust has an sive forward stick inputs ensures a namic Stall Recovery Procedure” adverse effect on AoA for aircraft quicker reduction of the AoA. lished in the following spirit: increase the thrust with care. applying a progres. to gently push on the stick so as to DUCED. Procedure FIRST: The AoA MUST BE RE. in addition to the stick lished as an annex to the FAA AC 120. of the AoA is generally obtained Bombardier and Embraer.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 9 Figure 3 Pitch control is a direct AoA command Relati ve airf low Figure 4 Adding thrust leads to an increase in AoA Relati ve airf crease low Thrust in Figure 5 Reducing thrust leads to a decrease in AoA Relati Thrust reduction ve airf low In summary: 10. titled “Stall Warning or Aerody- ed.

. ......... especially during high A300-600/A300-600F: workload situations............................. stick pusher..... FCOM Procedures / Non-ECAM Abnormal and Emergency Procedures / Operating Techniques 4.... For aircraft with engines mounted above the wings................ A300 QRH Temporary Revision number 076-1 portant in mis-trim situations........ applying maximum thrust can create a strong nose up pitching moment..... For engines installed below the wing...... was provided via Temporary Revision..................... This will also address autopilot induced full back trim.. A300-600/A300-600F FCOM volume 2 Temporary Revision number 002-2 A300-600/A300-600F QRH Temporary Revision number 217-1 2.. stick shaker..10 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety Generic Stall Warning or Revision of Airbus’ Operational documentation Aerodynamic Stall Recovery Procedure Immediately do the following at the first indication of Airbus has updated its operational documentation in order to reflect the changes introduced by the new generic stall recovery procedures.. 2010.. A330: FCOM volume 3 Temporary Revision number 552-1 b) If the control column does not provide the QRH Temporary Revision number 353-1 needed response.......... thrust application creates a helpful pitch down tendency................. thrust application energizes the air flow around the wing.. Rationale: While maintaining the attitude of the aircraft.......... As needed A310 QRH Temporary Revision number 224-1 Rationale: a ) The priority is reducing the angle of attack... Bank....... on May 12.. if speed is low...... or may result in loss of control or in high FCOM volume 3 Temporary Revision number 512-1 (A340-200/-300) structural loads. excessive use of trim can aggravate the A340: condition.... many times maximum power is not needed.. stabilizer trim may be necessary................... When stalling.. This may be very im.. disconnect the autopilot and autothrottle.Retract Rationale: This will improve lift and stall margin.... Manual control is essential to recovery in all situations...Wings Level A380: Rationale: This orientates the lift vector for recovery... However...... This information was provided together with an FCTM update 1.................... Thrust....... For propeller driven aircraft..... 6....... a) Nose down pitch control… Apply until out of stall (no longer have stall indications) A310: A310 FCOM volume 2 Temporary Revision number 004-2 b) Nose down pitch trim........ Autopilot and autothrottle....Wings Level Rationale: Apply gentle action for recovery to avoid second- ary stalls then return to desired flight path...... stall (buffet.. Disconnect advance copy and FOT 999.... typically at high altitude.As Needed Rationale: D  uring a stall recovery........ Bank............. 5. Ensure A300: A300 FCOM volume 8GE Temporary Revision number 219-1 the pitch attitude does not change adversely when A300 FCOM volume 8PW Temporary Revision number 051-1 disconnecting the autopilot................. the thrust is to be adjusted accordingly during the recovery. FCOM volume 3 Temporary Revision number 513-1 (A340-500/-600) QRH Temporary Revision number 369-1 3...............0044/10... Speed Brakes.. A318/319/320/321: There have been numerous situations where flight FCOM volume 3 Temporary Revision number 323-1 crews did not prioritize this and instead prioritized QRH Temporary Revision number 727-1 power and maintaining altitude. assisting in stall recovery.. Therefore. or aural or visual In order to allow simultaneous fleetwide introduction.. the procedure indication) during any flight phases except at lift off........... the thrust can be at idle or at high thrust. Leaving one A300FFCC: or the other connected may result in in-advertent A300FFCC FCOM volume 2 Temporary Revision number 052-1 changes or adjustments that may not be easily A300FFCC QRH Temporary Revision number 025-1 recognized or appropriate.......

it was decided to there is a VMC covering the case of another engine during these tests postpone VMCs determination by the ground acceleration at takeoff. the risk of failure of this modification. we have more or less the same yaw. the pilot is on a and then modifications were made heading. as one engine is shut down at very low altitude. followed by therefore do not affect takeoff and On any multi-engine aircraft. Some rules to be very cautious in the execu- aerodynamic efficiency of the fin of determination of the VMCs tion of these tests and they are only and the rudder are reducing. for approach. However. we could say that we have time and their validity has been Measurement of VMCs is not a reached some kind of minimum proven by the long experience on key priority at the beginning of control speed as it is a limit of a huge number of flight hours on the development of a long range manoeuvrability. critical issue is the execution of the improved fin. Such to yaw toward the “failed” engine. except for below the Minimum Control noeuvrability remains sufficient operations at very low weights. there is a risk of at this speed. But ago in a test flight. the cult to understand which logic is pilots. and it is diffi. VMCL-2. For all VMC air. aircraft. when reach. control was immediately recovered direction in order to maintain the ing the VMC. Due to the delay necessary for er engine of the same side. trol will always be lost or that a an event occurred a very long time The pilot can deflect the rudder and crash will inevitably occur. The several weeks. but the a manoeuvring sense. craft like the A380. is different. There are By nature. until we receive the It is called VMCG (G for Ground). On a quad. the which might have an impact on Airborne). although this last situation For the A380. VMCL (L performances at higher weight failure of the “live” engine gives for Landing). all aircraft types. . but fortunately create a yaw moment in the other what is sure is that. landing performances. has a very low probability. as it can lead very shut down with the 3 others at and it is not because the aircraft quickly to a loss of control. is associated with a modification of the design of the other one. it the case of failure of one engine is always useful to perform some (outer for a quad) with the other(s) measurements at an early stage of at maximum thrust. On a twin.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 11 Claude LELAIE Special Advisor to CEO Minimum control speed tests on A380 When the aircraft has an engine Everything is not black and white dynamic tests. have been applied for a very long Then. determinations of VMCA and VMCL are risky flight the flight program to be sure that several VMC: for takeoff configu. On a quad. Finally. loss of the other engine on the same It has to be demonstrated for certi- side as the “failed” one. it is called VMCA (A for tests. However. that the vertical fin had to be modi- nately a failure happens on the oth. due to maximum thrust. speeds (VMC). At a are rather strange. performed by well experienced test given speed. fied. without passengers. it has a tendency is flying below a VMC that con. during the first reduced immediately to avoid a off for a ferry flight on 3 engines. Nevertheless they to counter the effect of the engines. rudder is on the stop and just able behind that. when the speed limit of manoeuvrability and he to the flight controls to reduce dras- is decreasing the engines create cannot do what he wants freely in tically this risk. However. we will not have a bad surprise. in the approach configuration. we had an issue to on the remaining engines must be is mainly considered when taking start these tests as. there is first a static demon. with wings level. dynamic tests to show that the ma. as in the event of the side. rations. VMCG is obtained This is not penalizing for an air- losing the control of the plane in only by a dynamic exercise. the thrust fication. The reason is that all borne. these speeds are rather low and stration of the value. month of flights. and if unfortu. we discovered loss of control. another than expected or could necessitate just enough time to relight the one. the rapid build up of side slip. the situation the failure of 2 engines on the same flight controls. Anyway.

but the dem- onstration is straightforward for speed a small deflection is needed. namic tests at VMCA. even with full stration that the roll manoeuvrabil. be. ments. 2). This roll rate allows mum thrust. at high VMCL-2 are similar. VMCL. with the nose wheel cult when the rudder is on the stop. rudder. 1). we possible to go from 5° bank angle perform VMCL-2 tests. pothesis could explain the choice of this odd 5° value. But there is more to do. Some days later.5 deg/s at some tolerance on the bank angle. At his pocket”! Then the tradition has ciency to react to turbulence is not been kept and officialised. he put some knots “in steering disconnected to simulate no margin. this test to be passed with almost In doing so. VMCG somebody had imagined to have ed by 2 to be limited at 7.12 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety Figure 1 VMCA determination 5° bank angle 1. This bank angle is mediate and very smooth. there is this strange rule coming from? found to be as expected. By definition. Whatever the type of aircraft. VMCA. a second flight allowed us configured. Necessary rudder up to 25° in less than 5 seconds. As for the VMCA. using the rudder The tests to obtain VMCL and (fig. cation. and here we will just show one ex- ample for the VMCL. was plenty of roll capability at low It is a mystery! Maybe that. then. the performed. the outer engine is modified. we start about 20 kt engine). a given speed. very important as it allows a further engines reduced to idle. in the speed. When passing flights to be sure that there was no the opposite sense to the “failed” 25° bank. celerated with all engines at maxi- try in thrust. final flight was dedicated to certifi- ing constant. cause it cannot be compensated by larities of the aircraft. due to some particu- to still keep the heading constant. on the side of the rudder deflection. Where VMCL and VMCL-2 values were of the Fly By Wire programs. The aircraft is ac- because it is true that a perfect sta. at the end of May 2006. The rule is that it must be to confirm the results and also to above the predicted value. A demon. The rules are slightly The first VMCA and VMCL test VMCG is the shut down speed for different for VMCA and VMCL flight on A380 were performed which the deviation is 30 ft. deceleration will need some bank is building up very quickly. the roll rate commanded by the pilot was divid- 2. when reliable flight test installations where not existing. The available roll effi. shut down with the master lever. there could be a signifi- ity at VMC is sufficient must be cant deviation. computers detect a large asymme- bilization of the bank angle is diffi. Further are risks in this test as the side slip ly with the Authorities on board. the recovery must be im. from these flights and the VMCA. compared to the same test per. with better When engines and systems are der (at the opposite of the “failed” weather. But at low speed. At the very beginning formed with wings levelled. minimized. However. This hy. lateral excursion. At this speed. a wet or contaminated runway. on other programs. The pilot must try to minimize the There are some other specific dy. unfortu- nately in weather conditions not VMCL-2 the rolling capacity is reduced on ideal for these types of measure- the side of the deflection of the rud. But in order to avoid reach- old times. with the presented for certification. increases as the speed decreases. A third and decelerate slowly keeping head. the decision The “true” VMCA is obtained the yaw damper. the rudder being was made to perform preliminary when the bank angle reaches 5° in already on the stop. The VMCG is established with a low speed when the flight controls dynamic test. Usually. the speed speed reduction of about 5 to 10 There was no surprise coming increased and the side slip carefully kt. there all these tests are performed direct- eventually up to the stop. our aircraft. issue with what was going to be engine (fig. . ing too high side slip.

therefore we lined up the aircraft 10 meters on the left of the centre line. but we had a sur- prise as the aircraft started to skid Brake release laterally and we eventually reached -30 -10 10 30 Y (m) . same pilot doing the same action even a very light cross wind or terpolate back to the VMCG. the deviation should not exceed 2 meters. very sensitive to the engine cut-off the speed decrease is going to be The first test is usually not critical. in the right hand seat shuts down tests. Takeoff weight was 450 tons. the 30 ft deviation is reached. most of the Figure 2 VMCG test time. we have on one of the Toulouse runways. for the A380. The initial results demonstrated that we were right. following such shut downs at maxi- the engine at the planned value. configuration 3 and the predicted VMCG was 122 kt. In fact. depending on the results. is that repeating several shut downs at maximum thrust is damaging for an engine and we try to reduce this risk. some more trials are performed In the cockpit. However. 10 kt above Engine # 4 shutdown the predicted value. if there is a bias in the shut some small turbulence can have we have to be careful as around down speed. we decided to perform a first evaluation ourselves. mum thrust. on the jump seat. these tests are directly used for certification. As usual. we decided to per- Full left rudder pedal input form the first test with the engine shut down at 132 kt. At a speed about 10 kt above the VMCG. with an EASA pilot in the left hand seat and an Airbus pilot on the right. full length blue lines at 5 and 10 meters on each side. by steps of 3.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 13 This test must be performed in per. The first VMCG flight could only be performed after the installa- tion of the modified fin and it took x (m) place on March 30th 2006. it is most probably go- an impact on the results. the lateral deviation is ing to be the same for all tests and the flight test is planned at sunrise. Generally VMCG. The pilot Most of the time. Data re- as the shut down speed is about 10 During this series of tests. This makes it easier for the handling pilot to keep precisely the distance from the centre line during the acceleration. 2 or engines and is in charge of the spe- the takeoff when the maximum de- even 1 kt. To help. but as. due to numerous new systems fea- Maximum lateral deviation reached tures and some uncertainties on the predictions. cific relight procedures generally viation has been reached. As for the VMCA. as progressive as planned. The right engine was shut down at 132 kt as planned. because result above 30 ft to be able to in. the pilot duction will then allow the analysis kt above the planned VMCG. after about 6 given by the engine Manufacturers. It was planned to “fail” the right outer engine. we try to have at least one It is important to have always the fect weather conditions. speed. He tries to minimize with a progressive reduction of the a test flight engineer monitors the the deviation and then completes shut down speed. the trajectory. Then in the left hand seat is in charge of team to determine the right value. One of the Rotation reasons for minimising the number of times these tests are done.

A new surprise: fully deflected in the upper direc- the deviation was almost the same. in different directions permitted to ing gears skidding on the runway. We shut is that the value of the VMCG is down the engine at 135 kt and the very sensitive to the pilot reaction deviation reached 18 meters. a hidden failure.1 second more or less covered an anomaly: because of can modify the VMCG by 1 or 2 kt. tion while the centre aileron was just a bit smaller. the VMCG was now as planned. onds. depending upon the maximum tre line. than the planned figures. we dis. The deviation was 18 meters. stead of 3. something was abnormal. made in the computers. The videos were put down (fig. but this on June 14th with excellent results: time with a configuration 1+F in. specific situation. A engine thrust (option chosen by the it was a sound idea to take some batch of modifications was needed Customers). which ing the certification flight at the be- should have improved friction and ginning of September. on the left. Some modifications were also kt. For that. the deflection of The official value is given by the one of the 2 rudders was too slow. This one is around 0.14 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety Figure 3 VMCG – enhanced Rudders close to stop yaw control on ground Spoiler and ailerons deflection a deviation of 15 meters and we type of situation. instead of 2 in this agreed after data reduction for the . This was not the Rolls Royce engines is 119 or 121 went on the other side of the cen. Basi. we tried again. solution was to increase the drag on the wing which is on the side of the deflected rudders when they We landed immediately and decid. The final value der was active. which would have had seri- to create some additional yaw.6 sec- cally. A good demonstration that but the system was not robust. but 0. time. Therefore. we were expecting higher value was finally determined dur- forces on the landing gears. as if we were already at To improve the situation. kt. With a lower flaps set. no change! On top. allowing It was increasing with the speed! faster deflection of rudders in this Clearly. one ed to redo the test at a slightly high. are close to their stop. we The following day. in order to un. tests performed by the certification Only one servo control of this rud. However the exact ting. the ous adverse consequences for air- craft performance. pilot from EASA. it was the VMCG! An extrapolation let us necessary to enhance the efficiency think that the VMCG was probably of the flight controls in yaw after an at least 13 kt above the estimated engine failure. main reason for the huge deviation. The reason therefore reduce skidding. minimize the effect on the bank an- A third test was performed at 136 gle. in order value. which is slightly less precautions and line up 10 meters before continuing VMCG tests. around 122 kt. Due to weather conditions. performed the tests with all these derstand the reasons of this strange modifications at Istres Air Base behaviour. Having ailerons showing the tyres of the main land. spoiler and 2 of the 3 ailerons were er speed: 134 kt. 3).

Introduction architecture Displays (ND). 1). A380. Director use only their on-side Telex/Flight Operations Telex (OIT/ Auto Thrust (A/THR). fitted from RA1 only. This resulted in an ear. an A320 . which provide height information recognized as valid information by the Height information is received to several aircraft systems (fig. Airbus is used as a back-up. with two Radio Altimeters. could reach This article will therefore con. a single erroneous RA in the most critical scenario. Design improvements are currently under development on the Radio Altimeter as well as on other aircraft Figure 1 systems. except the lision Avoidance System (TCAS) Radio Altimeter (RA) provided an er. FOT) and Red Operations Engineering Bulletins (OEB) describing the opera- tional consequences. q On all aircraft models the which. tems with a single median height launched a series of investigation that The following systems are de- value. in order to better detect RA RA1 and RA2 receiver (R) and transmitter (T) errors and to avoid untimely flare antennas location on engagement. All Airbus aircraft are centrate on the other members of System (TAWS) receives signals affected except the A380. Airbus’ family of aircraft. These con- sist in the inspection of the RA antennas coaxial cables. roneous height indication. System Flight Displays (PFD)/ Navigation 1. are equipped with two RAs. from one RA at a time. q New tasks in the Trouble Shooting Manual (TSM) and Maintenance Plan- ning Document (MPD) related to the RA antennas and coaxial cables. As a result of these investigations. Traffic Alert and Col- All Airbus aircraft. In case of ly flare activation during the approach. an early from only a single source: activation of the flare law may lead height indication is not an issue for to an increase of the Angle of Attack the A380. Weather Radar (WXR). and A310. The A380 is fitted with three RAs. Erroneous RA occurrences should be systematically reported so as to allow proper implementation of the recom- mended maintenance tasks. which was and all audio indicators. the remaining RA which provide the aircraft’s sys- In response to these events. Terrain Awareness and Warning the stall value.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 15 Marc BAILLION Lorraine DE BAUDUS Flight Safety Director Group Manager A318/A319/A320/A321 Operational Standards. A300-600 Airbus published: These two RAs provide height in. Primary RA. Flight Warning Comput- In-service events occurred where a ers (FWC). q On the A300B2/B4. the Auto Pilot/ Flight q A set of Operator Information formation to the Auto Pilots (AP). detected failure. As a result of this system ar- led to the following conclusions: signed to receive an RA signal chitecture. should a RA provide erroneous height readings. Customer Services Radio Altimeter erroneous values 2. and containing recommendations to follow. if not corrected. aircraft systems. cleaning of the antennas and possibly replacement of the RA.

AP1+2 q Water ingress into the RA antenna Engaged installation affecting the antennas. engaged in SPEED. Both AP/FDs are engaged AP1+2 4. which continue to use the erroneous RA values. The internal causes may be linked to: Figure 2 q Water flow on the antennas. Consequences on the aircraft’s systems: of erroneous RA with both APs/FDs engaged: q RA 1 provides height informa- tion to PFD 1. Captain F/O q Runways contaminated with wa- ter or snow. Typical cause a) Indication lower than real height on RA1 during an ILS approach. and the lateral • AP 1 engages in FLARE mode to a direct link between the trans. In-service experience has shown function properly and provide the Therefore: that a Radio Altimeter may provide same height of 1 960 ft. The two following examples illustrate possible effects of an 1400 erroneous RA indication on an A320 Family/A330/A340 aircraft: . Operational Engaged consequences and recommendations An erroneous RA height indication may have effects on the: q Primary Flight Displays (PFD) q Systems Displays (SD) q Warnings and callouts q Auto Flight System mode changes q Aircraft protections. the RA condition 1960 may not be detected by the systems. on the FMA without ground reflection. Both RAs RA as the master AP).e. In these cases. AP 1 and to the height indications q Figure 2 shows the crew’s PFDs A/THR (the A/THR uses the same before the RA1 issue. Identical to Captain side q Degraded installation at connec- tors level. terrain presenting reflectivity variations. e.g.16 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety 3. hail clouds or bright spots. and potentially the coaxial cables. correct RA 2 reading is 1 400 ft. The A/THR is and PFD 1 displays “FLARE” mitter and the receiver antennas. – 6 ft. Both RAs provide correct height of 1 960 ft due to a defective drain valve. mode is on LOC. while RA 2 delivers the “THR IDLE” on the FMA of correct height of 1 400 ft. q Carbon dirt or ice accretion on the antennas. • The RA reading on PFD 1 is – 6 ft erroneous height indications due cal mode is on G/S. A value of -6ft has been Figure 3 observed in a number of events. such as the unavailability of the High Angle of Captain Erroneous RA F/O Attack Auto Pilot disconnection. PFD 1 and PFD 2. The external causes may be linked to aircraft flying over: q Other aircraft. Erroneous RA 1 reading is – 6 ft. This q Figure 3 RA 1 provides an • The A/THR engages in RE- can be related to causes that are erroneous height indication of TARD mode and displays either internal or external to the RA system. i. The verti.

correct RA 2 reading is 1 400 ft. In addition. Therefore: • The AUTOLAND warning lights are activated. Erroneous RA 1 reading is – 6 ft. • The AUTOLAND warning height on RA1 during an ILS Therefore: lights are activated.The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 17 q RA 2 provides height informa. AP 1 and both FDs are engaged q AP 1 is engaged in FLARE mode and one RA height goes below 200 AP1 feet. with AP 1 and both • The RA reading on PFD 2 is FDs engaged: 1 400 ft q Figure 4 shows the crew’s PFDs • AP 2 is still engaged in G/S before the RA1 issue. feet. Therefore: • The RA reading on PFD 2 is Figure 5 1 400 ft. vides an erroneous height indica- tions is greater than 15 feet. In addition. the difference q Figure 5 shows that RA 1 pro- between both RA height indica. AP 1 and to the A/THR (the A/THR uses the same RA as the master AP). The A/THR is and one RA height goes below 200 engaged in SPEED. the difference Engaged between both RA height indica- tions is greater than 15 feet. PFD 2 therefore displays same height of 1 960 ft. q RA 2 provides height informa- 1960 tion to PFD 2. cal mode is on G/S. Both RAs provide correct height of 1 960 ft Consequences on the aircraft’s AP1 systems: Engaged q RA 1 provides height informa- tion to PFD 1. • The A/THR engages in RETARD mode and displays Captain F/O “THR IDLE” on the FMAs of PFD 1 and PFD 2. The verti- “G/S” and “LOC” on the FMA. tion of – 6 ft. Both RAs vertical mode and LOC lateral function properly and provide the mode. Therefore: b) Indication lower than real tion to PFD 2 and to AP 2. Identical to Therefore: Captain side • The RA reading on PFD 1 is – 6 ft • AP 1 engages in FLARE mode and displays “FLARE” on the FMAs of PFD 1 and PFD 2. approach. Captain Erroneous RA F/O 1400 . while RA 2 delivers Figure 4 the correct height of 1 400 ft. and the lateral q AP 1 is engaged in FLARE mode mode is on LOC.

with self moni- the stall value. is under The detailed effects on aircraft pro. automatic Go Around (thrust levers set in TOGA). added in the following new TSM OIT/FOT SE 999. the Angle Of recorded in the Post Flight Record. ing using raw data or visual These recommendations have been References: references (FDs set to OFF) or. These documents include as enhanced to detect most RA erroneous height values. A320 the aircraft technical logbook. if a manual takeover is from the Electrical Flight Control the antenna and the aircraft not performed when this early flare System (EFCS) may also be structure.0035/09 dated 30th April 2009 for In addition. flight control systems will be cle. the q Pulsing Cabin Differential being implemented in the RA sys- CONF FULL High Angle of At. q 34-42-00-810-862 (A330/A340) q A330: RED OEB 076/2 q A340: RED OEB 091/2 q 34-42-00-006-00 (A300/A310). will provide better engagement occurs. GLS) ap. q Clean the RA antennas and the status. and FLARE modes engagement. the following maintenance Altimeter value. in and A330/A340 families can be order to ensure no dispatch with q Aircraft systems: found in the OIT / FOT and OEB an erroneous RA. Design too low height indication is com. The Flight crews must report toring capability to eliminate the erroneous heights. scheduled maintenance Several symptoms may assist the (MPD) include new tasks related to A300/A310 operators (no RED OEB as the operational crew in identifying a potential the RA: consequences are different than for the A320/A330/ erroneous RA reading: • Every 6 months: RA antenna A340).0034/09 dated 4th May 2009 for perform a manual Go Around tasks: A320/A330/A340 operators with thrust levers set to TOGA q 34-42-00-810-844 (A320 Family) q A318/A319/A320/A321: RED OEB 201/2 (significant longitudinal sides- tick input may be required). Improvements pounded by the possible impact ment after takeoff on the aircraft protections.18 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety In the examples above. then continue the land. well the following operational rec- ommendations in the event of an 5. replace them. or no RA auto- matic callout visit for the structure section. between Therefore. Conclusion q During all phases of flight. in the adjacent area with cleaning agents may be required to prevent the event of an unexpected THR IDLE (Material N° 11. react as follows: reading so as to: the symptoms persist: • Immediately perform an • Replace the RA antennas q Take immediate actions. q Untimely or no “RETARD” callout RA antennas and RA coaxial ca- bles during the heavy maintenance q Interruption of. the If the flight crews report symptoms The aircraft systems may not flight crew must monitor and of an erroneous RA height indica- always detect an erroneous Radio crosscheck all primary flight tion.010) and a lint free consequences of such situation. q Untimely ECAM L/G NOT surface cleaning The OIT/FOTs and OEBs are not applicable to the DOWN warnings • Every 12 years: replacement of A380. cloth It is essential that the crew identifies the flight crew must immediately the symptoms of an erroneous RA q If. AP. isolation against water ingress. for example. the risk of early flare engagement due to the q Untimely TAWS alert (“PULL UP” or “TERRAIN AHEAD”) 6. Pressure Advisory on ECAM CAB tem as well as in the aircraft systems tack Auto Pilot disconnection is not PRESS page. • Inspect the RA antennas q Report these symptoms to help Or coaxial cables. any of the above symptoms in certification. RA fault messages • A new gel gasket. prompt action from the crew proach with AP engaged. repair or roneous RA readings. indications. q Impossible NAV mode engage. On the The following improvements are A320 Family. which use the RA information: available in the event of a very low In addition to the above cockpit q RA system: erroneous RA height indication. • Both the Auto Pilot and referenced at the end of this arti. actions should be performed: flight phase and AP/FD and A/THR q During ILS (or MLS. Depending on the parameters and FMA indications. tection on the A300/A310. Maintenance erroneous RA height reading: recommendations 7. during any subsequent flight. . See OEB for detailed procedures OIT/FOT SE 999. If they are not maintenance teams troubleshoot er- • Immediately disconnect the in correct conditions. Attack will increase and may reach • A digital RA.

Approach procedure becomes part procedure. initiated with wings level).1. proposed with its advantages. context It covers the most probable Go 2. The craft on a constant track (which is the 1: As well as the Speed Reference System (SRS) heading target can be preset by the current track when the Go Around is Auto Pilot and/or Flight Director longitudinal crew during the approach. rupt the turn in case of a Go Around. Operational deviations from the required flight path when performing a Go Around. the need has arisen the NAV mode by pushing the HDG/ for an automatic engagement of TRK selector on the Flight Control Navigation (NAV) mode. Autoflight system is concerned): This article presents the opera. mode. Introduction initiated by pushing the thrust levers Missed Approach procedure: the Pilot Flying (PF) or the Pilot Non to TOGA. there are two options: of the ACTIVE F-PLN and the pre. To meet this increasing interest. q Push the thrust levers to TOGA tional context. Missed Approach procedure. the crew will per- called “NAV in Go Around” has form two main actions (as far as the been developed by Airbus. where the crew Go Around Track (GA TRK) Auto has to follow the published Missed The crew must always be prepared Pilot and/or Flight Director lateral Approach procedure.  Objectives of the modification The modification reduces the crew workload. even though it is an mode1. the The GA TRK mode guides the air- crew follows a constant heading. .The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 19 Stéphane GRANGER Eric JEANPIERRE A320 Family Autoflight System Manager System Manager Design Office A320 Family Program Automatic NAV engagement at Go Around 2. the viously flown approach is strung operations where the aircraft is more crew follows the published Missed back into the F-PLN at the end of the likely to be in a turn. it will not inter- Approach procedure.2. and the solution q Push the HDG/TRK selector. in the context of RNP-AR q In the most probable one. if the aircraft is not in a clean configuration. in the most probable Go an operational enhancement Around scenario. q Otherwise. the The Go Around is systematically crew will likely fly the published 1.1. Therefore. Current Go Around procedure Once the Go Around is initiated. Whatever the reasons to perform Flying (PNF) will have to engage a Go Around. it for a Go Around. makes the Go Around procedure as infrequent occurrence. Moreover. 2. Unit (FCU). and limits the potential 2. if cleared by ATC. Finally.  Go Around options This ensures the engagement of the Around scenario. similar as possible to the Take Off The FMS entered published Missed After the initiation of a Go Around.

the HDG or TRK mode is on the longitudinal axis. The aircraft is guided along the Missed Approach procedure. the NAV mode the pilot pushes the thrust levers to TOGA is kept engaged. to arm the NAV mode at TRK). q In a precision approach (ILS. the SRS / GA TRK modes are engaged. if a valid flight q In a non-precision approach with The “NAV in Go Around” modification selected lateral guidance (HDG or does not modify the aircraft behaviour plan exists. APP In other words. the initiation of the Go Around. Without With “NAV in Go Around” modification “NAV in GO Around” modification TOGA thrust is applied When TOGA thrust is applied. the GA TRK mode proaches are typically performed when The AP/FD modes engaged are iden. The following table illustrates the reduction in workload introduced by the “NAV in Go Around” modification. Then. been engaged by pushing on the FCU armed (if a valid flight plan exists and The Standard Operating Procedures “HGD-TRK” selector immediately if no heading preset has been selected specify that a Go Around is performed after the Go Around: during the approach). the NAV mode is automatically armed without any crew action on the FCU. MLS operational scenarios cally follows the published Missed or GLS) or in a FLS / Mixed LOC. Go Arounds during Precision Ap- Approach procedure. The NAV mode engages immediately (or as soon as the aircraft passes above 100ft if the Go Around has been initiated below 100 ft). is initially engaged (as currently) visibility conditions are not met at the tical to the modes that would have and the NAV mode is automatically Decision Altitude/Height (DA/DH). and the SRS / GA TRK modes are engaged. The pilot does not need to push the FCU kept engaged and the NAV mode is selector anymore: the new logics do it automatically. the AP/FD mode engage- ment sequence is strictly the same as when the modification NAV or FINAL APP). VNAV approach. In addition. The principle is to keep the NAV mode engaged or. automatically armed (if a valid flight plan exists). Principle of q In a non-precision approach with managed lateral guidance (NAV. the FMA displays the NAV mode. Typical The Auto Flight System automati.20 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety 3. by setting both thrust levers to TOGA. 4. . The crew has to arm the NAV mode manually by pushing on the FCU HDG/TRK knob. and pushes the HDG/TRK FCU selector.

A340 certifica. the NAV mode is automati. Approach. CONCLUSION The “NAV in Go Around” modification will become the production With the “NAV in Go Around” standard starting from: modification. the crew may preset the heading on the FCU. The mode will A320: MSN 4674 then engage as soon as the capture A321: MSN 4560 conditions are met. the most probable Missed Ap- It will also be included in the low RNP modification packages proach scenario and are essential (MOD 200192 Low RNP step 2 for FMS R1A Thales on the A330 and for specific operations such as low new MODS RNP step 2 for FMS R1A Honeywell on the A330 and RNP.3 AR). and limits the poten- tial deviations from the required flight path. the activation of the function q Go Around in Heading mode with requires the following: a heading preset q The hardware pin programming of each FMG(E)C or software pin When cleared by ATC to follow a programming of each PRIM computers. when performing a Go A330/A340 Around. A318: MSN 4169 tomatically armed at the initiation A319: MSN 4522 of the Go Around2. and if required. of the Flight Crew Around is initiated. MSN to be confirmed.22.2. development A320 Family 5. A340-500/600). is not automatically armed (prior- ity is given to the preset).The Airbus Safety Magazine Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 21 The “NAV in Go Around” modification does not change Impact on aircraft and associated MOD and SB operational procedures in the following scenarios: For the A320 Family. P4F1 (MOD 57546) or T4F1 (MOD 57549) lect the heading target then pull to tion for A340-200/300 engage the Heading mode. the NAV mode Operating Manual (FCOM). A380 The “NAV in Go Around” modification will become the production stan- dard. A330/A340 and A380. the NAV mode is au.30. It will also be included in the low RNP modification packages (MOD 38073 Low RNP step2+.03. MOD 150371 / 150372 / 150373 Low This modification reduces the crew RNP step 3 and MOD 151180 RNP 0. The crew will then just have to pull the FCU Aircraft MOD SB FMG(E)C or PRIM HDG/TRK knob to engage the type Number reference minimum standards Heading mode.05. . the upgrade of constant heading in case of Missed the flight guidance or PRIM software. If a Go q The update of volumes: 1. MSN to be confirmed. The “NAV in Go Around” modification will become the production The new logics are consistent with standard. 4. In this P4K2 or T4K2 (MOD To Be Defined) case. P1I11 (MOD 37311) or S4I11 (MOD 37252) A320 for A320 IAE/PW Family 38399 22-1296 q Go Around in Heading mode Family P1C12 (MOD 37934) or S4C12 (MOD 37935) without heading preset for A320 CFM Family In case of a late clearance from P4HJ1 (MOD 57545) or T4HJ1 (MOD 57547) ATC to follow a constant heading for A330 PW/RR after the Go Around (no heading Pending P4G1 (for 57544) or T4G1 (MOD 57548) preset). 3. 2 : If no heading preset.80. workload. the crew will have to turn A330/ FMGEC for A330 GE 200383 the FCU HDG/TRK knob to se. for A340-600 cally armed then engaged at Go Around until the pull action on the Under A380 FCU.

22 Issue 11 | JANUARY 2011 Safety Articles published in previous Safety First issues Issue 10. Revision 2 – Cabin Operations Briefing Notes – Fuel pumps left in OFF position – Hypoxia: An invisible enemy – A320: Avoiding dual bleed loss Issue 2. July 2008 – Tailpipe or engine fire – A320: Runway overrun – Managing severe turbulence – FCTL check after EFCS reset on ground – Airbus Pilot Transition (ATP) – A320: Possible consequence of VMO/MMO exceedance – Runway excursions at takeoff – A320: Prevention of tailstrikes – Low fuel situation awareness Issue 1. September 2005 Issue 6. June 2007 Issue 9. July 2009 – A320: Dual hydraulic loss – The Runway Overrun Prevention System – Terrain Awareness and Warning Systems – The Take Off Securing function operations based on GPS data – Computer mixability: An important function – Fuel spills during refueling operations Issue 3. August 2010 Issue 5. February 2010 – Operations Engineering Bulletin reminder function – A320 Family: Evolution of ground spoiler logic – Avoiding high speed rejected takeoffs – Incorrect pitch trim setting at takeoff due to EGT limit exceedance – Technical Flight Familiarization – Do you know your ATC/TCAS panel ? – Oxygen safety – Managing hailstorms – Introducing the Maintenance Briefing Notes Issue 8. December 2007 – A380: Flutter tests – New CFIT event during Non Precision Approach – Operational Landing Distances: – A320: Tail strike at takeoff ? A new standard for in-flight landing distance assessment – Unreliable speed – Go Around handling – Compliance to operational procedures – A320: Landing gear downlock – The future air navigation system FANS B – Situation awareness and decision making Issue 4. December 2006 – Dual side stick inputs – Trimmable horizontal stabilizer damage Issue 7. February 2009 – Pitot probes obstruction on ground – Airbus AP/FD TCAS mode: A new step towards safety improvement – A340: Thrust reverser unlocked – Braking system cross connections – Residual cabin pressure – Upset Recovery Training Aid. January 2005 – Rudder pedal jam – Go Arounds in Addis-Ababa due to VOR reception problems – Why do certain AMM tasks require equipment resets ? – The importance of the pre-flight flight control check – Slide/raft improvement – A320: In-flight thrust reverser deployment – Cabin attendant falling through the avionics – Airbus Flight Safety Manager Handbook bay access panel in cockpit – Flight Operations Briefing Notes .

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