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ATC and Dispatch - Research Paper Example

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Air Traffic Controller and Dispatcher No: Date: University: Air Traffic Controller and Dispatcher Air Traffic controller is a service provider manned by the ground staff to guide the flights on the ground and in the air…
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Air Traffic Controller and Dispatcher No: Air Traffic Controller and Dispatcher Air Traffic controller is a service provider manned by the ground staff to guide the flights on the ground and in the air. He or she has to ensure prevention of flight from coming close to each other, its organization and smooth flow of flights without any hindrance. In many aircrafts there is an inbuilt “collision avoidance system” preventing aircraft from coming close to each other. Further, ATC has to provide information and guidance to the flight. In some countries of the world its role is dual as for as the commercial and defense flights are concerned. Take one such example of America, where his or her role is to manage security and defense flights plus managing commercial flights. In Brazil, the Brazilian Army manages the whole affair of aviation. ATC also provide guidance to pilot concerning weather, navigation (London City Airport, 2011). Air Traffic Control Officer should have sound professional qualifications before becoming radar controller, airways controller or airfield controller. During their entire careers, they have to do most of the jobs starting from ground controlling until reaching the top operational position of watch supervisor (London City Airport, 2011). In major airliners, there are sizeable numbers of controllers who are on duty at a time to manage Air Traffic Control. Air Traffic Control Centers should have staff as per the size of the airliner. Before flying, pilot has to get permission to start its engines from a ground controller, thereafter he or she will have to get permission to push back from its stand from another ground controller (United States General Accounting Office, 2002). There are number of countries where ATC services are provided to all private, military, and commercial users. ATC is also responsible to separate few or all aircrafts. In technical terms, it is called "controlled airspace”. In an "uncontrolled airspace”, aircraft may fly without the assistance of air traffic control system. Depending on the nature of flight and the class of airspace, ATC may issue directives to pilots that are required to follow or restrict its role to flight information. In some countries, mentioned services are treated as an advisory service to assist pilot operating in the airspace. However, the pilot in command has the ultimate responsibility for the safety of flight. In emergencies pilot has the discretion to take its own decision in order to ensure safe lending of the aircraft with passengers on board. Under the mentioned scenario pilot is not liable by ATC for taking its own course of action for a safe lending (United States General Accounting Office, 2002). It is incumbent upon ATC to follow the directives of International Civil Aviation Organization to conduct its flight operations either in the English language or in the language used by the station on the ground. Flight superintendents or as you may call them Air Dispatchers, who are responsible for determining flights schedule to the airlines and to ensure that all Federal Aviation Administration regulations are strictly complied with. It is the duty of Air Dispatcher to draw up flight plans in consultation with pilots and flight engineers to ensure safe flights. As per job description, in addition to the above, dispatchers are to maintain contact with cabin crew when they are on board to pass on necessary instructions with regard to weather conditions, alternate landing options and necessary changes in altitude (Airline Dispatchers Federation, 2011). During the course of drawing up flight plans, aircraft dispatchers have to check weather conditions and the quantity of quality fuel to be filled in the fuel tanker, to identify the best routes and altitudes for outgoing flights, to get selected alternative landing sites if worst weather confronts to the aircraft. Also, he has to examine engineering department reports to make sure that required maintenance has been done (Catalyst Communication Technologies, 2011). When pilot and dispatcher are in agreement that for some reasons, scheduled flights are not available; dispatcher must intimate the passengers and the crew members for alternate flights to be flown out. It is the defined responsibility of a dispatcher to keep records of available aircrafts and equipments, weight of cargo, flying time of each aircraft and details of each crewmember to be airborne (Airline Dispatchers Federation, 2011). He has to establish contact simultaneously with as many as twelve planes to coordinate for an execution of action plan with the concerned people when emergencies arise. If plans are changed, dispatchers must contact the dispatch centers where the plane is destined. Flights superintendants are generally assigned for large airliners aided by subordinate dispatchers, who help them in gathering weather information (Catalyst Communication Technologies, 2011). Without coordinated efforts of Air traffic controller and Air dispatcher, an airline cannot ensure smooth flight operations. Hence, their services are badly needed for execution of domestic flights successfully. References Airline Dispatchers Federation. (2011). Job Description. Retrieved on September 23, 2011 from http://www.dispatcher.org/job-description Catalyst Communication Technologies. (2011). What are Dispatch and Interoperability. Retrieved on September 24, 2011 from http://catcomtec.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=19&Itemid=34 London City Airport. (2011). Airport Careers. Retrieved on September 24, 2011 from http://www.londoncityairport.com/downloads/lcy-option07web.pdf United States General Accounting Office. (June 2002). Air Traffic Control: FAA Needs to Better Prepare for Impending Wave of Controller Attrition. Retrieved on September 24, 2011 from http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d02591.pdf Read More
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