January 11, 2012
By Dan Namowitz
The FAA, in keeping with assurances it made to the pilot community, has announced that the two remaining airways made unusable by the relocation of the Anchorage, Alaska, VOR will be restored to availability for navigation Feb. 9 when other changes associated with the navaid’s move take effect.
AOPA expressed its appreciation to the FAA for living up to its commitment to restore the availability of the airways that had been delayed as a result of flight-check testing, and for the agency’s outreach to the aviation community about the numerous changes in procedures.
Pilots are encouraged to study this flyer that describes affected procedures in detail, and informs pilots of the VOR’s new frequency, 113.15 MHz, and its new identifier: TED. The changes will take effect at one minute after midnight Alaska Standard Time on Feb. 9 at the start of the next charting cycle.
The resumed operational status of two airways, V-320 and V-440 is among “many changes to the terminal procedure and the enroute structure from Valdez to Homer to Big Lake,” the FAA publication said. The changes make it critical to have new charts on board the aircraft, it added.
In formal comments on the FAA’s plan to move the VOR, AOPA had urged the agency to prevent service levels from dropping as a result of airway availability reductions.
Pilots should be aware of some significant effects of the change.
The new VOR will be located on the field at Anchorage International Airport, having been moved from its old location on Fire Island. Pilots should understand that if they are now directed to fly to the VOR, even with VFR flight following, they will be proceeding directly over the airport, not the island.
Anchorage International Airport's Runway 14/32 will become Runway 15/33.
Pilots who are accustomed to the Anchorage VOR’s former identifying letters ANC should note the new identifying letters TED. The VOR name remains the Anchorage VOR.
The new location has poorer radio propagation characteristics that will result in poorer reception in some areas. As a result, several airways have been revised to provide adequate reception. The change in the VOR’s location also affects DME reception, with a number of DME fixes being eliminated. See the draft charts.
Two changes to magnetic variation have been charted in the general area, at Kenai and Big Lake.
The Senate has joined the effort to expand the FAA's third-class medical exemption to more pilots and aircraft.
The International Society of Women Airline Pilots champions and supports women in the cockpit.
On any route, the current combination of flight conditions and airspace can present a myriad of decisions to ponder.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.