Friday, June 26, 2009

The NDB Approach

Third post about IFR approaches. This time, the NDB (Non-Directional Beacon) approach. Looks like there's only one NDB approach in Mexico. I will post different approach charts from different countrys later.
The NDB is different from a VOR station.

Ensenada NDB Rwy 11
This NDB approach is more like a VOR approach. You must make a procedure turn in order to land. There's not too much to say. The procedure is very simple: Cross the ENS NDB at 5000ft, descend to 2400ft while flying on the 298º outbound bearing from ENS NDB. Make a left procedure turn and after intercepting the 298º inbound bearing (118º inbound course), descend to the MDA, which is 860ft.
Missed approach procedure is to climb and turn to intercept the 298º bearing outbound to proceed on the approach track to the minimum holding altitude=5000ft.

Note the "CAT A, B & C" on the Header. It means this approach is only for those types of airplane categories. Not 757s or greater. You can see in the minimums section that the category D is not applicable. The night landing is not available, because the runway doesn't have lights.
Check the Circle-To-Land section as well. It is not authorized Northeast of the runway. Reason? Mountains. If you want to circle-to-land on Runway 29, you must do it south-southeast of the runway.

The NDB approach is a very tricky one. It is more difficult than the other types of approaches, because the flight deck instrument only shows the bearing to the station. So if you have a crosswind, it doubles the fun.

Germany has more NDB approaches... I'll post one next time.

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