IVAO Gander / Shanwick Oceanic


Controller Procedures


The Canadian and British divisions have compiled a standard operating procedure document for North Atlantic control. This document covers procedures for both Gander and Shannon FIRs.

Before attempting to connect to any oceanic position all controllers, regardless of division of origin, must complete oceanic training which is offered by the Shanwick/Gander FIR. Upon completion of this training the controller is rated to work both Gander and Shanwick positions.
It is important to understand that staff of either division have full jurisdiction over both FIRs, and their instructions should be complied with.

Download the sector file for Shanwick and Gander FSS here. Do remember that radar may NOT be used to control.

Please check our new identifiers at item "2. Description of airspace and sectors"!

Clipart from Clipartheaven.com

1. Purpose
2. Description of airspace and sectors
3. Oceanic Control (OCC) procedures
3.1 Description of position
3.2 Oceanic Clearance
3.3 Minimum separation
3.3.1 Vertical
3.3.2 Lateral
3.3.3 Longitudinal
3.3.4 Speed differences
3.3.5 Opposite direction
3.4 Communication with aircraft
4. Oceanic Radio (FSS) Procedures
4.1 Description of position
4.2 Radio frequencies
4.3 SELCAL
4.4 Position reports
4.5 Relay of requests and clearances
5. Gander-specific procedures
5.1 Intercom procedures
5.2 Consolidation of sectors
6. Shanwick-specific procedures
6.1 Airspace allocation
6.2 ORCA
6.3 BOTA
6.4 SOTA
6.5 NOTA
6.6 Bandboxing
7. Datalink Oceanic Route Clearance Authorisation (ORCA)
7.1 Overview
7.2 Usage
8. Coordination with other ATC Units
8.1 Communication with radar units
8.2 Communication with other oceanic units
9. ATIS
10. Video

Extra: Concorde Controller Procedures


1. Purpose

This Document establishes standard procedures for the control of the North Atlantic MNPS airspace by Gander OCC and Shanwick OCC including coordination and transfer of control of flights and delegation of airspace between the two units.


2. Description of airspace and sectors

The Gander and Shanwick OCC are each responsible for half of the north Atlantic MNPS airspace (border is at 30W°). Both OCAs have been divided into various sectors to optimise traffic management and controller workload.

Sector Frequency Identifier Code
Gander Oceanic clearance 128.450 / 135.450 CZQX_OC_CTR OC
Gander FSS (southern tracks) 122.370 (12237.0 kHz) CZQX_S_CTR FSS-S
Gander FSS (northern tracks) 126.900 (12690.0 kHz) CZQX_N_CTR FSS-N
Gander FSS (west airspace) 127.100 (12710.0 kHz) CZQX_W_CTR FSS-W
Shanwick Oceanic clearance 127.650 / 123.950 EGGX_OC_CTR OCD
Shanwick FSS (southern tracks) 124.175 (12417.5 kHz) EGGX_S_CTR ORS
Shanwick FSS (northern tracks) 120.350 (12035.0 kHz) EGGX_N_CTR ORN
Shanwick/Gander FSS (general position) 127.900 (12790.0 kHz) EGGX_SG_CTR ORS

The first position to be opened is always Shanwick/Gander FSS (EGGX_SG_CTR), followed by Shanwick FSS (EGGX_S_CTR) or Gander FSS (CZQX_S_CTR). Agree with EGGX_SG_CTR which position SG prefers. Prior permission required for Gander FSS (CZQX_W_CTR) by EGGX-Staff.

A diagram of the North Atlantic Airspace can be found here.


3. Oceanic Control (OCC) procedures

3.1 Description of position

The OCC position is responsible for maintaining required separation within the Oceanic Control area by using the position reports relayed by FSS. OCC shall also approve/deny all requests for altitude and/or speed changes as relayed by FSS.
IvAc shall only be used to communicate via text to other pilots and controllers.

The OCC shall process and approve all oceanic clearances. ORCA may be used in lieu of voice. ORCA procedures are located in section 7.

There are two (2) Oceanic Control Centres. One located in Gander and one Located in Prestwick. See sections 5 and 6 respectively for unit-specific procedures.

3.2 Oceanic Clearance

Flights planned through Oceanic airspace must obtain a separate Oceanic Clearance. The request is made between 30 and 90 minutes prior to the ETA of the Oceanic Entry point (via Voice or Datalink). It is the responsibility of the Oceanic Controller to ensure that all aircraft enter oceanic airspace properly spaced and remain spaced throughout the crossing.

Phraseology


Note: A time limitation is only given if the aircraft's ETA at the NAT needs to be altered. In the above example BAW188 was cleared via the requested route. If this isn't the case the route would be modified. (It's a good idea to let the pilot know if this is the case before issuing the clearance so you won't have to repeat it because the pilot wasn't properly prepared)

Before issuing clearance the controller shall insert the flight into ORCA and confirm positive spacing exists and will be maintained throughout the crossing. It is the OCC controller’s responsibility to co-ordinate routing and/or altitude changes with domestic units.

Actual clearance to change course and/or altitude will always be given by the domestic unit. It is not necessary to pass entry times as the domestic units have a dedicated monitor.

3.3 Minimum separation

3.3.1 Vertical

Minimum vertical separation within MNPS airspace is 1,000 feet up to and including FL410, and 2,000 feet above that.
Supersonic flights require 4,000 feet vertical separation from all other traffic if no other form of separation exists. This applies at any level for aircraft at supersonic speeds.

3.3.2 Lateral

Minimum lateral separation is sixty (60) Nautical Miles.
Parallel tracks which are spaced apart by one (1) degree, and which change latitude by no more than two (2) degrees over a longitude of ten (10) degrees are deemed to be separated.

Example: tracks from 50N020W to 52N030W and 49N020W to 51N030W are separated. 52N010W to 55N020W and 51N010W to 54N020W are not separated.

NATs are normally defined so that they do not change latitude by more than 2 degrees for each 10 degrees longitude difference thereby ensuring separation.

3.3.3. Longitudinal

Minimum longitudinal separation for aircraft on the same track is ten (10) minutes flying time.

Example: An aircraft passing 49N040W at FL380 must not be followed by another at the same level on the same track until ten minutes have elapsed after the first one passed that point.

Aircraft on crossing tracks at the same level must be fifteen (15) minutes apart at the point where their tracks cross.

3.3.4 Speed differences

Aircraft with different speeds on the same track/FL will gradually get closer or further apart. It is imperative to monitor this change of spacing closely for loss of separation. Aircrafts are requested to maintain the cleared speed given with the oceanic clearance.

When calculating initial spacing use the following formula: Slow followed by fast: Add one (1) minute to the standard for every increase of 0.01 Mach number of the second aircraft.

Example: M0.80 followed by M0.84 requires FOURTEEN minutes at ocean entry same track same level.

Fast followed by slow. Subtract one (1) minute from the standard for every decrease of 0.02 Mach number of the second aircraft. The minimum is 5 minutes at Oceanic entry.

Example: M0.84 followed by M0.80 requires a minimum of EIGHT minutes separation at ocean entry same track same level.

If two aircraft at different speeds are entering Oceanic Airspace at the same point but following tracks which will be separated by no less than sixty (60) nautical miles, or ten (10) degrees of longitude after entry the increase above is not required. The reduction above may still be applied.
If this situation occurs inside Oceanic Airspace (as opposed to at entry) then they are considered to be on crossing tracks and the fifteen (15) minute rule applies. There is no reduction to the fifteen minute rule for fast followed by slow on crossing tracks.

3.3.5 Opposite direction

The following is included in order to determine the separation requirement for aircraft wishing to climb/descend through the level of another aircraft opposite direction, whether on the same track or crossing tracks opposite direction.

Vertical separation must be established by a position calculated to be thirty (30) minutes flying time before the position/time at which it is estimated that they will pass one another, and must continue to exist until 30 minutes after they are estimated to have passed. If it can be positively established that they have passed, by both having reported passing the same Oceanic Reporting Point then the separation may be reduced to 10 minutes after they are known to have passed each other.

Example: Two aircrafts,
            A: routing 55N010W 56N020W 57N030W
            estimates 56N020W at 1234Z and 57N030W at 1304Z
            B: routing 56N030W 56N020W 56N010W.
            estimates 56N030W at 1224Z and 56N020W at 1254Z.

Inspection and calculation indicates that they will both be approximately one third of the way from 20W to 30W (or two thirds of the way from 30W to 20W) at approximately the same time (1244Z). So vertical separation must exist from 1214Z until 1314Z. Once (B) has reported coordinate 20W the pass will have been established and one or other may climb/descend through the other aircraft's level after 1304 (ten minutes after they are known to have passed).

3.4 Communication with aircraft

Communication with aircraft over the North Atlantic shall be made by relay through the FSS stations. See sections 5 and 6 for Gander and Shanwick intercom procedures.


4. Oceanic Radio (FSS) procedures

4.1 Description of position

The FSS position is responsible for relaying communications between the OCC and aircraft over the North Atlantic, as well as entering position updates into the OCMS.
Up to three flight service specialists may work as Gander FSS. The area of coverage for each sector will depend on actual traffic, and shall be decided by the FSS supervisor , S sector (or the EGGX-Staff)
Typically N serves traffic north of 50W, S serves traffic south of 50W and W traffc west from 50W onwards.

4.2 Radio frequencies

All communications take place HF frequencies. As the current pilot/controller software doesn’t support HF frequencies a modified decimal system has been arranged where the frequency 12237 kHz is entered as 122.37 in IvAc. Phaseology for the said frequency remains “one two two three seven kilohertz”

4.3 SELCAL

SELCAL shall be used whenever aircraft are equipped. On initial call-up SELCAL should be verified. Subsequent communications shall always be initiated with a SELCAL signal.
To transmit a SELCAL signal enter .selcal [callsign] in the IvAc comm. box and transmit. If the SELCAL check fails the aircraft should be advised to monitor the frequency continuously.

4.4 Position reports

Aircraft will transmit position reports to Gander or/and Shanwick FSS at each waypoint along their route, or every 45 minutes, whichever is shorter. Upon receiving the report Gander FSS or/and Shanwick FSS shall enter the estimate time as well as any remarks/requests into the OCMS flight strip.

Phraseology:

If any portion of the aircraft’s transmission is unreadable, or if parts are omitted reconfirm with the aircraft before reading back the position report.

4.5 Relay of requests and clearances

Aircraft will make all requests on FSS frequencies. These shall be relayed to the OCC controller:


5. Gander-specific procedures

5.1 Intercom procedures

Aircraft when issuing instructions or clearances always preface with “ATC clears” or “ATC instructs” as appropriate. Refer to the Canadian Phraseology guide, for complete intercom procedures.

5.2 Consolidation of sectors

When staffing the sectors shall be consolidated as follows:

1 Controller: FSS-S shall be open. FSS-W and FSS-N shall be delegated to FSS-S. FSS-S shall assume the duties of OC.
2 Controllers: FSS-S and OC shall be open. FSS-W and FSS-N shall be delegated to FSS-S.
3 Controllers: FSS-N, FSS-S and OC shall be open. FSS-W shall be split between FSS-N and FSS-S.
4 Controllers: FSS-N, FSS-S, FSS-W and OC shall be open


6. Shanwick-specific procedures

6.1 Airspace allocation

Sections of the Shanwick FIR are allocated to Shannon ACC and Brest ACC. The areas are designated SOTA (Shannon Oceanic Transition Area) and BOTA (Brest Oceanic Transition Area), respectively (see attachment #3) Aircraft within these sectors are handled by the relevant domestic ATC authority.

6.2 ORCA

Aircraft requesting Oceanic clearance via ORCA (see paragraph 7) are not required to conact Shanwick on RTF.

6.3 BOTA

Flights via..:

…will enter the BOTA.

6.4 SOTA

Flights via..:

…will enter the SOTA.

6.5 NOTA

Flights via..:

…will enter the NOTA.

6.6 Bandboxing

When staffing the sectors shall be consolidated as follows:

1 Controller: ORS shall be open. ORN shall be delegated to ORS. In addition ORS shall assume the duties of OCD.
2 Controllers: ORS and OCD shall be open. ORN shall be delegated to ORS.
3 Controllers: ORS, ORN and OCD shall be open.


7. Datalink Oceanic Route Clearance Authorisation (ORCA)

7.1 Overview

Aircraft Communication Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) equipped arcraft may request and receive their Oceanic clearance via datalink, utilising the Oceanic Route Clearance Authorisation system (ORCA). This system should not be used by aircraft within 30 minutes of entry to Oceanic airspace; RTF should then be used.

7.2 Usage

Aircraft will request clearance using the web-based FMC, following the included instructions. When a clearance request is made a flight-strip will appear in the Pending bay on the ORCA ATC page. The flight should be checked for conflict with the aircraft in the relevant FL/Track section on the Cleared bay. If required, the FL, ETA or track can be changed before clearing the aircraft. Alternatively, ATC can request negotiation with the flight by pressing the DENY button. The pilot will then receive a message requesting radio contact.
Aircraft in the Cleared bay can have their details changed by clicking on the callsign.


8. Coordination with other ATC units

8.1 Coordination with radar units

Sector Westbound Eastbound Phraseology
Scottish Control
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Scottish Control is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly.
A coordination message should be sent to London around 5 Minutes prior to reaching the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching GOMUP contact Scottish Control on 127.275 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching GOMUP Scottish on 127.275 Megahertz, BAW27C."
EGPX_WS_CTR
127.275 MHz
ATSIX, BALIX, ERAKA, GOMUP+NOTA when Shannon offline
Shannon Control
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Shannon Control is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly.
This means for most Ireland departures that they need to contact Shanwick after obtaining their IFR clearance well before takeoff.
A coordination message should be sent to Shannon around 5 Minutes prior to reaching  the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching MALOT contact Shannon Control on 131.150 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching MALOT Shannon on 131.150 Megahertz, BAW27C."
EISN_CTR
131.150 MHz
DOGAL, NEBIN, MALOT, TOBOR, LIMRI, ADARA, DINIM+ NOTA+SOTA
London Control
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
London Control is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly.
A coordination message should be sent to London around 5 Minutes prior to reaching the exit point quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching GAPLI contact London Control on 128.125 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching GAPLI London on 128.125 Megahertz, BAW27C."
EGTT_10_CTR
128.125 MHz
LESLU, GAPLI, TURLU, RATKA+SOTA when Shannon offline
Brest Control
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Brest Control is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly.
A coordination message should be sent to London around 5 Minutes prior to reaching  the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching ETIKI contact Brest Control on 125.500 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching ETIKI Brest on 125.500 Megahertz, BAW27C."
LFRR_CTR
125.500 MHz
BOTA
 
Special airway T9, LASNO to BEGAS:
Please note that this airway is oceanic when Brest is offline, therefore aircraft should be contacted and a clearance issued.
Madrid Control
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Madrid Control is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly.
A coordination message should be sent to Madrid around 5 Minutes prior to reaching  the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching PASAS contact Madrid Control on 135.700 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching PASAS Madrid on 135.700 Megahertz, BAW27C."
LECM_NW_CTR
135.700 MHz
PASAS, PITAX, BERUX, DIXIS, BEGAS
Montreal Center
A coordination message should be sent to Montreal around 5 Minutes prior to reaching  the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Montreal is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly, or obtain the clearance on the pilots behalf.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching BERUS contact Montreal Centre on 133.220 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching BERUS Montreal on 133.220 Megahertz, BAW27C."
CZUL_DD_CTR
133.220 MHz
MUSVA, KAGLY, KENKI, NALDI, BERUS, TANTI, GRIBS, VIMLA, MIBNO, TAPLU, PEPKI, KENRI, IKMAN, VIBID
Gander Domestic
A coordination message should be sent to Gander around 5 Minutes prior to reaching  the exitpoint quoting Level, Speed, ETA for the point and destination.
Oceanic clearances must be obtained by the latest 30 Minutes prior to entrypoint. 
Gander is therefore to release aircraft to meet that deadline accordingly, or obtain the clearance on the pilots behalf.
ATC: "BAW27C, reaching KOBEV contact Gander Centre on 124.175 Megahertz."
Pilot: "Reaching KOBEV Gander on 124.175 Megahertz, BAW27C."
CZQX_GN_CTR
124.175 MHz
MOATT, PRAWN, PORGY, LOACH, SCROD, OYSTR, CARPE, HECKK, CRONO, DENDU, KOBEV, LOGSU, NOVEP, RONPO, URTAK, VODOR

8.2 Coordination with other oceanic sectors

Sector Coordination
Santa Maria Oceanic
Handoffs to and from Santa Maria should be coordinated on an individual basis as the majority of flights will be on random tracks.
Ideally transfer of communications should occur on the 45th Parallel.
LPPO_OC_CTR
12790 kHz
  Caution: When Santa Maria comes online, Shanwick radio must relinquish the normal frequency and switch to the backup frequency, i.e. 120.35.
New York Oceanic
Handoffs to and from New York should be coordinated on an individual basis as the majority of flights will be on random tracks.
Ideally transfer of communications should occur on the 44th Parallel.
KZWY_E_FSS
122.120 MHz
Reykjavik Control
Handoffs to and from Reykjavik should be coordinated on an individual basis as the majority of flights will be on random tracks.
Ideally transfer of communications should occur on 61°N and/or 30°West
BIRD_CTR
119.700 MHz

9. ATIS

When controlling Oceanic please use this ATIS:

Serving Shanwick and Gander/ Datalink in use/ Clearance to be obtained NO LATER than 30 Mins prior to Entry/ Position reports mandatory and to include: Callsign, Waypoint, Time, FL, Mach, NAME+ETA of next waypoint/ Name ONLY of waypoint thereafter/ For further Info please consult occ.ivao.aero

Remember to remove the phrase "Serving Shanwick and Gander" when another controller logs in on Gander.


10. Video

If you are interested in the real procedures and workflow the video below might be what you are looking for:


© 1998-2014 - IVAO™. All Rights Reserved.