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View Diary: How Airliners Work - Navigating the Oceans (75 comments)

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  •  Kudos for the nav course! (11+ / 0-)

    Maj. Kong, your great circle route lesson was much easier to understand than the lecture I got in navigator school! Thanks. In the cold war era, it was not uncommon to have "bogus" air traffic controllers (read Soviet bloc) who would attempt to mislead Europe bound military flights, so as to have them violate airspace restrictions. Fellow navs said it was pretty convincing, if you weren't confident of those celestial fixes you mentioned.
    I hope you will cover fuel planning and "point of no return" in a subsequent session. Maybe that's all computerized now, but it was indeed worse, and more critical, than "doing your taxes" as I recall.

    •  There was a name for that (8+ / 0-)

      I think it was called "meaconing".

      I'd also heard of them setting up bogus TACAN stations across the border in East Germany to get people to violate the border.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 05:13:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  seems stupid. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sawgrass727, PeterHug, Simplify

        aside from some Nonsense in the press,
        what's the point of this?

        •  Not sure (6+ / 0-)

          I never flew in USAFE so I never encountered this.

          I suppose it would have been a propaganda victory of sorts "The yankee imperialist warmongers violated our airspace".

          I seem to recall there was a radio code that meant "Everybody turn West now because you may not be where you think you are".

          If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

          by Major Kong on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 07:33:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  i could believe it happened but it was stupid (0+ / 0-)

            on both sides.

            1) Okay you lure a C-130 into crossing into the wrong airspace.  

            2) you shoot it down.

            If you look at that Korean Air debacle, it wasn't good for the russians.  Nobody is really going to believe a transport
            is of much harm.

            Unless you shoot down a nuclear bomber or EW jet,
            there isn't much "Value" there.

            You kill a bunch of people, you drive up tension,
            you set a precedent for shooting at lost, drunken stupid
            russian aircraft,

            the only real possibility is you add some experience for
            EW spoofing of C&C spoofing, but, i'd assume in war time,
            these commands come with code word phrases.

    •  Sadly, it still happens (6+ / 0-)

      There are NOTAMs out at many airports in the US indicating that bogus directives may be received. Basically, idiots with aviation transceivers trying to give airplanes bad directions.

      Fortunately, they usually are idiots, and pilots usually ask for confirmation when it happens.

      •  ... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PeterHug, RiveroftheWest

        Now that I think about it, it also still happens politically -- Iran has scored a few U.S. drones, presumably by spoofing or overpowering/disabling their navigation systems.

        •  I believe at least one of those (0+ / 0-)

          was done by transmitting bogus GPS signals at much higher strength than the satellite signal.

          If you can do that and know what you're doing, you should be able to fly the plane regardless of what the remote controller tries to do.

          •  ... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            PeterHug

            To do that, I presume one would have to jam/overpower the "Y" signal entirely. Which wouldn't take much -- GPS signals are below the noise floor, and receivers use "correlation gain" to pick the signal out of the noise.

            Alternatively, there has been work on security issues in GPS receivers -- there are a number of parameters in the transmitted satellite data, researchers recently found that putting "bad" values into some of them will crash (and sometimes "brick") a wide variety of GPS receivers.

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