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Transponders for Paramotors.


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Over the last few years there have been whispers that PPG / PG pilots will sson be made to carry Transponders. This comes to us in the form of a "Consultation - Proposal to Amend The ANO 2005 - Improving Technical Interoperability of all Aircraft in UK Airspace"

Is this a good idea?

Is it a bad one?

What effect will this have on you and I?

Anyone know the ins and outs?

My personal feeling is that I think it can do no harm for people to know where you are in the sky, we have a few fast planes, helli's, and even microlilght learner pilots to keep an eye out for here at Lambourn.

The CAA say...

(The objective of this proposal is to make a significant contribution towards ensuring that the number of mid-air collisions and serious risk-bearing ‘near-miss’ incidents in UK airspace does not increase and, preferably, decreases as the level of air traffic grows. This will be achieved by requiring the fitment and operation of suitable avionics to all aircraft in order to substantially improve their technical interoperability with each other throughout all classes of UK airspace.)

I am happy to carry one 'I think', but what are the other implications of this IF it happens??...


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Unfortunately the benefits of carrying one are only going to be available to you if you are in airband radio communication with a radar equipped ATC unit. Also, we have a major issue at the moment with the dangers from the transmission power with no fuselage to shield us from it. Also, a lot of guys like to buzz around inside a field at the same time... what will a radar controller make of that!. Also, Also, Also... could carry on but I've got to go to work.

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I dont have a problem with carrying a "squawker" to let atc and equipped aircraft know I am there. And the CAA are not expecting us to carry them until a suitable equipment is available (small and not harmful).

There is a sub-text to all this which is un-manned aircraft and opening class G airspace to more commercial traffic (cos the . The minimising of "near misses" that they want to acheive is when they fill class G airspace with this extra traffic.

So although I dont object in principle to the carrying of one I do object to the reasons for the need to have to! namely more and more air freight just cos its cheaper (but not if you count the environmental cost).

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I am happy to be a beacon to all other aircraft.. Not so sure that I want to be talking to ATC though. Why can we not just let people know where we are for safety?

The RAF LYNEHAM breifing will contain information about a Paramotors Radar Signiture (or lack of) in fact we can go to the Tower and see it for ourselfs. (STILL PLACES) http://paramotorclub.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1175 (STILL PLACES)

My thoughts are that this may become a problem for people who fly outside of ANO standing orders. (by that I do mean low flying in the main) this will of course all be getting (SEEN and RECORDED) This is not a problem for me and or my students as we tend not to do it :D


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letting others (other aircraft) know we are there is a very good idea but I dont think Mode S transponder system is actually designed for that purpose. I understand it is designed for ATC to be better able to direct traffic in all classes of airspace including class G. Their screens will show the location and trajectory of all craft but they will be able to screen out signals if they are irrelevant or too numerous or dense.

We will not derive any benefit (other than being allowed to continue to fly). Other aircraft will only know where we are as a result of ATC notifying them (on airband radio - on a licensed frequency - not 118) or if they are big enough to be equipped with mode S display systems themselves.

It really isnt about us at all, we are an "irritating little problem that needs to be accomodated or banned" In my opinion.

There is a system in use in GA already called FLARM that tells you abou other proximate craft ?

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Collision Warning for General Aviation

FLARM is an affordable collision-warning system for general aviation and recreational flying. It is the only prevalent alternative to the commercial airliners’ expensive ACAS/TCAS system. FLARM Technology develops, manufactures, promotes and sells its own products and licenses technology and IP rights to OEM manufacturers worldwide. Several “FLARM inside” designs by various avionics manufacturers are available on the market.

Since 2004, over 10’000 FLARM compatible devices have been installed in aircraft worldwide. The devices have been credited on many occasions with avoiding dangerous situations and increasing situation awareness.


* warns early if other aircraft approach on a collision course.

* warns when approaching static obstacles

* acoustical and visual alarm

* uses license free SRD band for transmission

* simple installation 12V - 24V, 43mA power consumption

* no configuration or distraction during flight

* intelligent motion prediction minimizes "nuisance" alarms

* supports the pilot¹s airspace observation

* FLARM equipped traffic displayed by most moving map products



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Another headache for the legislators is that we are not a registered or certified craft and the transponder is allocated toa craft registration. We are not easily registered as our crfat is often comprised of different wings and motors that we put together on a whim. It would mean a difefrnt system of registration or the regulation (registration and certification)for microlights being applied to paramotors wouldny it?

Certainly the transponder will be required to be registered and certified, and currently you need a radio operators license to operate one so we'd all have to get radio licenses.

It gets ever more complicated (thankfully) which is why it has not yet been imposed. The BHPA, BMAA, BGA, GA associations have all argued very strongly on our behalfs to block or slow down this measure.

There is going to be another consultation of a fresh proposal soon and each of us has an opportunity to respond. There will be announcements from the associations to their members with recommendations and suggestions. I wil pass these on as they arrive.

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"We are not easily registered as our crfat is often comprised of different wings and motors that we put together on a whim. It would mean a difefrnt system of registration or the regulation (registration and certification)for microlights being applied to paramotors wouldny it?"


My name is unique or for sure my name and DOB are. :D Why not use that and save the effort of creating a new system.?


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It appears that among the major beneficiaries of mode S imposition will be the unmanned aviation businesses, on whom the main burden of cost will not fall. After all, an unmanned flying object does not meet the usual requirements of keeping a proper lookout for anti collision purposes, so this can be managed and simplified instead by making everything in the air keep announcing their positions.

Using the same logic we can perhaps now look forward to issuing full car driving licenses to blind persons, whose need to avoid other vehicles will be overcome through insisting that all vehicles are rewired so that their horns are permanently sounding.

At least the CAA were partly shamed into following some of the rules governing consultations of this nature instead of their original arrangements that ignored most of the rules. Cynics would think the fix is in, folks, and that the mode S issue is simply part of a continuing attack on the freedom of this sport along with related airsports which will all very soon be shifted from 'allowed unless explicitly banned' to 'banned unless explicitly authorised at a price' by our noble and not in the slightest greasy politicians, but cynics would be cynical, wouldn't they.

Update from BGA/BHPA who of course are also seriously concerned:

The recent mode S meeting with CAA at Turweston was attended by 35 air sport pilots. Although the questions from the floor made some impact, the low attendance will not have gone unnoticed by CAA. It is very clear that feedback to CAA on the current mode S proposals is extremely important – even the DAP team agree with that point.

With this in mind, please can I ask you to circulate the following text to your members? The meetings described below are open to all, and those from air sport who attended a meeting at Lasham in 2006 will recall the significant and effective impact that can be made with the regulator when people are willing to stand up and be counted.

Mode S Meetings - 2008

BGA clubs are hosting a number of open meetings with the CAA to hear about the current Mode S consultation process. ALL ARE WELCOME. The meetings (all 7pm) will be at:

Lasham Friday 4th April

Pocklington (Wolds GC) Friday 11th April

Directions to all clubs is available on the BGA web site at www.gliding.co.uk/findaclub/clubdirectory.htm.

These meetings are a great opportunity for members to engage with the rulemakers and further clarify our airspace needs. We will shortly be providing guidance on how to respond to the consultation, but these meetings will help you to develop your own personal view on how to respond. We are calling on all glider pilots to make a response as was done to such great effect during the first round of consultation and, as such, the BGA urges ALL pilots to try to attend one of the meetings.

More information on the consultation process is on the BGA web site at http://www.gliding.co.uk/bgainfo/airspace/modes2008.htm

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