guy's blog

NAT Ops Bulletin #2020-001 Explained

Nothing all that new in this bulletin. Basically, this is a combination and update of the four previous NAT Ops Bulletins covering ACARS Datalink receipt of oceanic clearance in the Gander, Reykjavik, Shanwick and Santa Maria FIR’s. Specific OCA procedures are combined into this one document are Gander, Reykjavik, Shanwick and Santa Maria. This is a good procedural review for ACARS Datalink oceanic clearance in the NAT HLA.

Here are some of the highlights in a timeline format:

MEL Repair Category in Part 91 Operations

I was recently schooled by a maintenance director at a 91/GA operator based here in the US. MEL (D195), repair category’s A,B,C,D do not apply, only provisos such as “Before Next Flight…” must be adhered to. IF: a prolonged time has passed, maintenance must produce a review of the deferred item and ensure the continued compliance.

The reference for this is FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 4, Chapter 3, Section 2, Paragraphs 4-647 and 4-648. This is further defined in MMEL Policy Letter #025, item #24.

ACARS Datalink Oceanic Clearances

Reference, NAT Ops Bulletins 2020-001, 6APR20. Nothing all that new in this bulletin. Basically, this is a combination and update of the four previous NAT Ops Bulletins covering ACARS Datalink receipt of oceanic clearance in the Gander, Reykjavik, Shanwick and Santa Maria FIR’s. Specific OCA procedures are combined into this one document are Gander, Reykjavik, Shanwick and Santa Maria. This is a good procedural review for ACARS Datalink oceanic clearance in the NAT HLA. Here are some of the highlights in a NAT HLA crossing timeline format:

LOA B034 Decommisioned

As of 18FEB20, LOA B034 for Part 91/GA operators has been “Decommissioned” by the FAA. OpSpec B034 for commercial and Part 91K is still active. 

This means that an AFM or POH statement of compliance with RNAV-1 or  RNAV-2 do not need to separately demonstrate compliance with RNAV 5 criteria. Consequently, there is no longer a need for part 91 LOA B034.FAA POIs will discontinue work on reviewing an application or requests to amend an existing part 91 LOA B034.

Suggested Reading List

Here is a suggested reading list for pilot’s starting (Initial) or maintaining an International Ops Qualification:

  • AC 91-70, Chapters 1,2,5, & 6

  • AC 90-105,Chapters 6 thru 9 
  • AC 20-138, Chapter 6 thru 8 and Appendix 1 thru 3 
  • AC 90-96, Appendix 1 and 2
  • FAA Domestic/International NOTAMS, Chapter 1,2,5, & 6
  • ICAO Annex 2, Chapters 1-5 and Appendix 2

International Info Resources

Much of international flight operations is knowing what to expect when you are out and away from the familiar territory of “Home Base USA”. This becomes an exercise in sorting the wheat from the chaff, or urban legend from current procedures and requirements. The real tuff part is that with our notoriously short pilot attention span coupled to a vast amount of data sources, this becomes a planning chore that is often overlooked or given over to planning services and manual writers. Not the best practice nor is it a recipe for continued success. 

RVSM Height Monitoring Changes

AGHME sites going away, the NAT site in Strumble being unreliably in-service and the EURO site in Switzerland, Austria and Germany usually of reach… Monitoring results from these sources is problematic. Simply stated, there is still a worldwide requirement for 24mos/1000hrs RVSM monitoring.

About a year ago the big news was that if you had ADS-B, you did not need to be monitored domestically. This was only half the story. The FAA is actually monitoring the aircraft while in RVSM and ADS-B coverage. The FAA then sending out notices IF: you did not meet the RVSM standards.

NAT Data Link Mandate, JAN 2020

NAT Datalink Mandate Final Phase 
Begins 30JAN20


Since December 2017 aircraft operating between FL350 and FL390, throughout the ICAO North Atlantic region 
were required to be equipped with operable FANS 1/A (CPDLC and ADS−C) avionics. To U.S. operators 
this means that must have been issued operational authorization via LOA/OpsSpec A056 to use this airspace.
 
This requirement was known as the “NAT Datalink Mandate, Phase 2B”. At the end of this month, 

Pages