Crosswind

20/01/2009

Issue

This position paper deals with the hazards in crosswind operation and stipulates the point of view of VNV in addressing these hazards. Wind is in essence a stochastic phenomenon and can therefore not be described or dealt with in an exact manner. Wind and all associated characteristics as crosswind and tailwind, shear, turbulence, vortices and gusts are of mere importance in our daily flight execution. Wind influences not only the aircraft’s performance but also the aircraft handling characteristics and piloting task. Some specific operational hazards are introduced. In order to conduct flight safely in windy conditions, one should assess these hazards very thoroughly and a profound safety study should be the basis of any crosswind policy. Because of all uncertainties a conservative approach should be assumed. As a result of all these variables a precise determination of airplane crosswind capability is impossible. Sufficient margins must be applied to cater for the inherent uncertain wind characteristics, to cater for all uncertainties in wind measurement and to cater for pitfalls in the certification and operational process. Schiphol is recognized as a wind-critical airport due to its wind climate, the airport build-up and the runway orientation. Furthermore, wind has a substantial impact on its capacity.