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RADIO INSTRUMENTS
CHAPTER THREE
GCA Pattern
Many facilities with radar approach capability have established a GCA pattern, sometimes called
the "Box" pattern, which is designed to accommodate repeated practice radar approaches. The
patterns have legs named after the legs in a VFR traffic pattern (crosswind, downwind, base, and
final). For crew orientation, controllers are required to report aircraft location prior to final.
Controllers will frequently report aircraft location relative to legs of this GCA pattern, such as
"Rocket 205 is 5 miles south of Sherman on downwind leg." It is common practice to
crosscheck these reported locations with actual aircraft location and provide feed back to the
controller, such as "Rocket 205, concur." or "Rocket 205, be advised our TACAN shows us on
the 240 degree radial at 10 miles."
Precision Final Approach (PAR)
The PAR final approach starts when the aircraft is within range of the precision radar and contact
is established with the final controller. This normally occurs at approximately 8 miles from
touchdown. When aircraft heading is within 30 of runway heading and the aircraft is within 10
miles of the runway, the student will request "Slow to gear speed." This is done, whether or not
the aircraft is established on the Final Approach Course. The IP will extend the landing gear.
After the gear indicates down and locked, the student will initiate the Landing Checklist.
Speedbrakes will normally be closed during this checklist. Flaps may be up, one-half, or full
down, at IP discretion. The student will provide angle of attack verification speed appropriate
for weight and flap setting. The student will provide a Missed Approach brief or Climbout Brief,
as appropriate.
Upon intercepting the glideslope, the student will challenge, "Speedbrakes." The speed- brakes
will then be extended. The landing checklist may now be completed: "My harness is locked,
landing gear is down, landing checks complete, waiting on landing clearance." The student will
NOT repeat GCA Missed Approach Procedures or Climbout instructions unless requested by the
IP or until one of those maneuvers is being executed (see below).
The student will report 200 feet prior to the Decision Height and the Decision Height: "200 feet
prior to Decision Height: 226 feet". If at the Decision Height, the runway environment is not in
sight or the aircraft is not in position to affect a safe landing, a missed approach is executed.
At Decision Height, the student will inquire: "Runway in sight?" If the answer is in the
affirmative, the student will respond "Take over visually", or, if climbout instructions are being
executed, recite the climbout instructions. If the answer is negative, the student will respond by
reciting the Missed Approach Instructions, monitoring commencement of the climb,
commencement of the turn (if there is one), and commencement of the "clean up," and then
report the Missed Approach to the controlling agency, including a statement of intentions or a
request for clearance.
RADIO INSTRUMENTS
3-41


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