Thursday, June 14, 2007

Week 4: Pictorial Extravaganza

I took a bunch of pictures this week around the academy this week, especially around the Tabletops for ol' time's sake.

I also shot some of the Tower3D sims, which are miniature versions of the full-scale TSS sims we'll be going into next week. Tower3D doesn't have voice recognition, so all aircraft are operated by ghost pilots who sit in the back of the room. While I prefer real people to computer voice recognition, the drawback to this is that some of the ghost pilots can get confused since they're handling so many planes. However, I overall felt that the Tower3D offers a more realistic experience, since the planes and vehicles move at a more realistic pace.

Anyways, on to the pics.

First up, two panoramas I shot. Click to view the (very very large) full-size images. Dial-up beware.

Panorama of a Table Top Lab:
Tower3D Setup:
To explain what you're seeing, the visible equipment and items consist of:
  • LLWAS (Low Level Wind Shear Alert) touch display, currently showing 0900 on the clock
  • D-Brite radar touch display
  • 4 monitors combined to create one single view
  • Note pad (under monitor 1)
  • Stack of blank VFR strips (below where monitor 2 and 3 meet)
  • Yellow Runway Crossing Memory Aid - the famous "Idiot Stick" that Ground uses to coordinate runway crossings with Local
  • Duplicate LLWAS touch display for Ground (currently showing time 0900 and wind 240 @ 15)
And now some normal photos (also click to view full-size):

Tabletops in action:

Just to give you a little breakdown, the two identical TT labs are setup as follows:
  • 1 student and 1 instructor working Floor Ground (the two guys sitting).
  • 3-4 students plus 1-2 instructors working Floor Local (everyone standing on the floor)
  • 3 students plus 3 instructors in the tower cab (Local, Ground, and Flight Data)
  • 1 ghost pilot who reads clearances for Flight Data (not visible - they sit at a desk directly behind the photo's viewpoint)
  • 1 Lead or Assistant-Lead Instructor who watches over everything from the raised desk at the far wall (below the three white posters)
Tower3D Overview:
Joanna and Crystal, 2/3rd's of the "A-Team":

The other 1/3rd, thinking about what he's going to do next.

As our instructor says: "Don't think. It hurts the team." :)

My Ground OJT Evaluation form:

I can't win. Yesterday, I did really well on Ground but the guy told me to slow down and relax (I was a bit hyper). Today, I do that... and get told to "act quicker". LOL.

Lastly, I got bored at the end of my very last Flight Data run of my time here. All of my clearances were amended, read, and dispersed. Figuring that I would never get another shot at it, I asked the instructor if I could try something.

Well, here's the result. See if you can figure it out, LOL.


r9s said...

nice one wicked...although he might have to divert to ADW once he finds out how short the runways are at DCA...

Kelly said...

nice pics, baby bro.

also found a link that might interest you!

its got all the details on whats on it :)

Devin said...

too bad A1 isn't a B744, damn terminal guys. -zse

Wicked Penguin said...

Whoops, hehe. Forgot that it's a -200 series 747. Or would they use the military designation? Actually... nevermind. I don't want some Secret Service dude calling me up saying "WTF are doing?".

Devin said...

yeah, i think the equipment would be VC25 on the strip.

O'Hare Tower 2020 said...

Awesome blog. I have enjoyed reading your ATC career progress. I hope to be working at ORD tower some day!. I cannot see many of the pictures :( any ideas? Thanks