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Air Traffic Control in the Club

Operations and Training

Overview

The Club's Air Traffic Services Manager has for many years championed the cause of General Aviation with his several tutorials dealing with Radio Telephony (R/T) and promoting the Club's R/T Proficiency Ratings. This work is twofold.  Firstly many of the tutorials are geared to enabling Club pilots to be highly professional when connected to VATSIM or IVAO and talking to an Air Traffic Controller, and our ATS Manager's efforts are indeed recognised on VATSIM.  Secondly, other tutorials he has developed are to encourage those Club members who are interested, to become proficient in providing ATC services for Club Events.  He has also introduced the two less demanding ATC ratings to Club Members - the Aerodrome Flight Information Service (AFIS) and Air-Ground Radio (AGR).  Although aerodomes served by AFIS and AGR services are very common throughout the UK, they are poorly supported by VATSIM-UK or IVAO because there is little demand from their members.  Indeed most VATSIM and IVAO members prefer to fly heavy passenger or freight aircraft, whereas the Club is almost unique in being exclusively a General Aviation/Light Aircraft Club.

The tutorials and links in this section of the website are primarily designed to provide Club members with the knowledge and the tools to conduct Air Traffic Services (ATS) for Club events, either as qualified controllers on the VATSIM network, or as Club qualified controllers operating on the Club TeamSpeak channel. The information provided is also very useful to pilots too of course, helping them understand how Air Traffic Services in the UK work.

A page describing broadly how the two online services VATSIM and IVAO operate ATS is also included in this section of the website.

Air Traffic Services in the UK

At civilian airports and aerodromes, there are three levels of Air Traffic Service which may be provided at aerodromes.

In addition to these aerodrome-related roles, Air Traffic Services include several radar service for wide area coverage.

What these various definitions mean, and the duties required of these roles is dealt with in the tutorials in this, the Air Traffic Control section of the website.
There is a fourth level, which need not concern members, but in the UK there are over 100 unlicensed private airstrips, often on farms and large estates, often comprising little more than a field. These airstrips have no air traffic control at all, as you might expect.  However, it is perhaps worth noting, that the Club has a "Farm Strips Tour" available for pilot members who want to visit these airstrips. They have been modelled for both FSX family and X-Plane.

ATC Phraseology

The correct radio communication phraseology for airports with full ATC may be found in the Club's Air Traffic Control Manual and in the UK Civil Aviation Authority's Radio Telephony Manual CAP413.  It is important to use this phraseology for clarity and brevity (and in the real aviation world - safety).

Air Traffic Control in the Club

Those members who are interested in providing an Air Traffic Service for Club activities and events have three choices.

Radio Telephony Training for Club Pilots

The Club has a number of Radio Telephony training schemes for pilot members. Details of these schemes can be found on the website under the ATC menu tab, by clicking the "Radio Telephony for Pilots" option.