Pathfinder • The Pathfinder Page is designed to provide FAA users and National Airspace System (NAS) users with a shared understanding of which flights are candidates to be pathfinder flights.
Pathfinder • In the past, there has been no satisfactory way for a NAS user to communicate that to the FAA. • This page allows the airlines to enter flights so that the FAA can know without making phone calls which flights are pathfinder candidates.
Pathfinder • Pathfinders will normally be requested for departure routes. However, there will be requests for enroute as well as arrival route pathfinders. • The Pathfinder page is to be considered a strategic planning tool. As routes are forecasted to be impacted by severe weather, FAA facilities will solicit the airlines for pathfinders.
Pathfinder • When the AOC Coordinator has received word from the Dispatcher confirming the captains agreement to become a Pathfinder, s/he will enter the flight in the PATHFINDER PAGE of the ATCSCC Intranet.
Pathfinder • Joint Authority - If the Pilot does receive a request by the local FAA facility to become a Pathfinder, the Captain should always contact the controlling Dispatcher to verify that the Pathfinder route is still viable.
Pathfinder • Ultimately, it is the Dispatcher that decides (after the crew agrees to being a pathfinder), based on pilot qualifications, aircraft equipage, and other factors, whether a flight is a candidate to be a pathfinder.
Pathfinder • Where does the AOC Coordinator list Pathfinder flights?
Pathfinder Page on Web Site
THE SCREEN REFRESHES ONCE A MINUTE. ANY NEW FLIGHTS AUTOMATICALLY SHOW UP WITHOUT ANY ACTION BY THE USER.
Command Center can relay pathfinder possibilities to ATC facilities. To add a Pathfinder flight the AOC Coordinator can click “Add Flight button.
All boxes need to be filled with information ENTIRE ROUTE DOES NOT NEED TO BE ENTERED. ONLY THAT RELEVANT TO PATHFINDING After all boxes are filled click the “Submit Flight” button.
SCREEN WILL DISPLAY WITH COMMENTS AFTER FLIGHT SUBMISSION CLICK CHECK BOX TO REMOVE COMMENTS
SCREEN WITHOUT COMMENTS AFTER COMMENTS CHECK BOX IS UNCHECKED
NEW FLIGHT ADDED WITH COMMENTS AUTOMATICALLY AFTER SCREEN REFRESHED
PATHFINDER FLIGHTS CAN BE SORTED A NUMBER OF WAYS
REFRESH BUTTON IS CLICKED TO MAKE EFFECTIVE ANY ENTRIES IN THE SORT ORDER PORTION OF THE CONTROL PANEL. OR IF ONE HAS CHECKED OR UNCHECKED THE SHOW COMMENT BUTTON. ALSO, THIS BUTTON CAUSES THE MAIN PAGE TO BE DISPLAYED IF ONE IS LOOKING AT ANOTHER PAGE.
THEY CAN BE SEQUENCED IN TIME, BY PRIORITIZING ETD AS #1
THEY CAN BE SEQUENCED BY ALTITUDE, BY PRIORITIZING ALT AS #1
MULTIPLE SORTING CAN BE DONE AS WELL HERE ALTITUDE IS SORTED AS PRIORITY #1 AND ETD IS THE SECONDARY PRIORITY.
DELETING - TO DELETE USA 890 FROM PATHFINDER. CLICK ON THE FLIGHT TO BE DELETED.
1. LOCAL FACILITIES • Regional ARTCC’s and local TRACONS will be the facilities most likely to request pathfinders. As routes are forecasted to be impacted by severe weather, local facilities will pass on their requests for pathfinders to the Air Traffic Control System Command Center. ATC Responsibilities Pathfinder
2. ATCSCC • ATCSCC will have the overall responsibility of soliciting pathfinders from the NAS users. The discussion on the need for pathfinders will primarily be through advisory. Occasionally, small telcons or announcements on the TCA hotline may occur for discussion with SPT’s. ATC Responsibilities Pathfinder
ATC Responsibilities 2. ATCSCC continued... The Air Transport Association (ATA) and NBAA will presumably be responsible for monitoring the Pathfinder page. As flights are added or deleted to the Pathfinder page, the ATA representative will keep the Severe Weather Unit apprised of the additions/deletions. Pathfinder
2. ATCSCC continued... • Severe Weather will tactically coordinate pathfinders with local ATC facilities. The information furnished on the Pathfinder page will be the basis for this coordination. ATC Responsibilities Pathfinder
AOC Coordinators Responsibilities. The AOC Coordinator will solicit pathfinders from those dispatchers operating flights in the affected area. The AOC Coordinator will give each dispatcher a detailed briefing on: a. Time frame a pathfinder is needed. b. Fix or route segment needed to be flown. c. Any other pertinent information deemed necessary by the dispatcher. Pathfinder
AOC Coordinators Responsibilities. Once a dispatcher, after coordination with the flight crew, agrees to be a pathfinder, the AOC Coordinator will insert this data on the Pathfinder page. Should the dispatcher inform the AOC Coordinator that they no longer wish to be a pathfinder, the AOC Coordinator must remove the affected flight from the Pathfinder page immediately. Pathfinder
AOC Coordinators Responsibilities. The AOC Coordinator will monitor the pathfinder flight, requesting information from the controlling dispatcher if the fix/route can be considered open. Upon receiving this information, the AOC Coordinator will forward this information to the ATCSCC Severe Weather Unit via the TCA or ATA representative. Pathfinder
DispatcherResponsibilities Pathfinder Dispatchers will be the single point of contact for the solicitation of individual pathfinders. Prior to contacting the crew, the dispatcher must weigh all available information involving the proposed pathfinder. This review would include, but not limited to the following: a. Aircraft performance/ limiting MEL’s b. Additional fuel burn requirements c. Alternate routes of flight if pathfinder is unsuccessful.
Pathfinder DispatcherResponsibilities Dispatchers will contact the Pilot in Command of the proposed pathfinder as soon as possible to gain their concurrence to the proposed flight. Dispatchers must stress to the P.I.C. the following: a. Every attempt should be made to fly the Pathfinder route. b. Do not take-off and immediately request headings away from the Pathfinder route without reason. Advise Dispatcher of any deviation. c. Once passed the weather, provide as much information to the dispatcher and controlling facility as to whether the route can be flown by succeeding aircraft.
DispatcherResponsibilities Pathfinder At the point coordination and agreement has been reached with the P.I.C., the dispatcher will advise the AOC Coordinator of his/her ability to act as a proposed pathfinder. If, at any time prior to flight departure, the dispatcher or flight crew no longer wish to participate as a pathfinder, this information must be given to the AOC Coordinator as soon as possible.
DispatcherResponsibilities Pathfinder After departure, the dispatcher will seek as much information on the route flown and report his/her findings to the AOC Coordinator.
Pathfinder Flight CrewResponsibilities The importance of pathfinders cannot be overstated. The ability to open previously closed airspace mitigates delays, lengthy re-routes, and possible cancellations.
Pathfinder Flight CrewResponsibilities If ATC contacts the flight (based on listing in Pathfinder Page), the crew will advise the Dispatcher of Pathfinder request and route, then verify Dispatcher Agreement. A number of variables could have changed from the time the captain and dispatcher originally agreed to the Pathfinder, to when the captain actually received the Controllers request.
Pathfinder Flight CrewResponsibilities • Upon accepting the role of a pathfinder, the crew will be expected to do the following: • a. Make every attempt to fly • the route as filed. • b. Do not immediately take- • off and request headings • away from the Pathfinder • route without reason. Advise Dispatcher of any deviation from pathfinder route. • c. Give ride reports and suggested alternate routings as soon as possible to the dispatcher and FAA controlling facility.
Pathfinder Flight CrewResponsibilities If at any time prior to departure the flight crew does not wish to participate as a pathfinder, they must contact their dispatcher immediately. In addition, if the flight is within fifteen minutes of proposed departure time, the local FAA facility must also be contacted.