When I am controlling and the scopes are vacant – very little traffic –I think about how I could organise myself more proficiently. As an example, some of the projects I have completed – and yet to complete – are as follows:-
1. Difficult areas:- I listed some of the difficult areas that I needed to work on, such as: Converting from VFR to IFR in-flight: departures/arrivals at unmanned airports: STAR and non-star arrivals into manned satellite fields: requests for non-operational runways: reducing height effectively
2. Compose a list of all the popular destination airports from PDX/SEA Tracons. This list comprises the Code and name of each airport in alphabetical order
3. Develop a “combined” Alias/cheat sheet for PDX Tracon, incorporating both East and West operations
4. Develop a list of the most common precision instrument approach procedures in PDX Tracon
The list is probably never ending but, researching and compiling these lists help to develop my ATC skills. And, even thinking about them makes me aware of the complexities associated with this amazing pastime that we enjoy.
I have developed two “easy on the eye” sheets showing the STAR arrivals both at KPDX and KSEA. These sheets show me the STAR, its North and South/East and West crossing points within the Tracons together with heights/speeds required.
My message is this. If you are at a loose end, then use the time to review your current abilities and seek to improve.
Improvement brings enjoyment and satisfaction
Ask questions of the training staff and fellow controllers. Also training FAQs
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