Wake Turbulence Updated SAFO 12007
- Dan Boedigheimer
In October 2012, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) published Safety Alert for Operators (SAFO) 12007 on Categorization (RECAT) of Wake Turbulence Separation Categories at Memphis International Airport (MEM). The RECAT was based on research by the FAA, Eurocontrol, scientific experts in wake, and experts in safety and risk analysis.
Fast forward one year and the FAA have published an updated SAFO 12007 detailing the plans to expand the RECAT standards for wake turbulence to six new airports:
- Louisville International-Standiford Field (SDF) – operational as of September 9, 2013
- Miami International Airport (MIA) – 0600 EST (1100Z), December 1, 2013
- Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) – TBD
- San Francisco International (SFO) – TBD
- Atlanta International Airport (ATL) – TBD
- Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) – TBD
Do you know what category your aircraft falls into for wake turbulence separation? Do you know how much spacing is appropriate when following a Boeing 757 on a visual approach with the RECAT? If not, maybe it’s time for a wake turbulence refresher.
Categories are now based on weight, certificated approach speeds, and wing characteristics, along with special consideration given to aircraft with limited ability to counteract adverse rolls. Note that FAA Guidance in Notice JO 7110.608 only uses weight and wingspan as criteria to place an aircraft into a wake turbulence category – the other criteria noted in the SAFO may be used in the future. RECAT places aircraft into six (6) categories, labeled A-F, for both departure and arrival separation.
Advanced Aircrew Academy offers an online Wake Turbulence module that reviews these latest changes to wake turbulence categories and this SAFO updated last month. When was the last time your training provider’s course was updated? Advanced Aircrew Academy’s modules are updated weekly by subject matter experts who are sharing the airspace with you flying business aircraft today. They share real world practical information with you through our online training modules. Visit our Wake Turbulence course description page for more information.