ATC - Concorde-Specific Operations at LHR/"CAP"

5.12 Concorde Operations: In order to reduce the fuel penalties suffered by Concorde aircraft at low levels and at low speeds the following procedures may be used when ATC workload and traffic conditions permit.

5.12.1 Aircraft Procedures

The optimum speeds to be used by Concorde aircraft are:

• approach to Ockham or Biggin 350kt decelerating to cross the facility at 250kt;
• leaving the holding facility at 250kt;
• base leg 250kt decelerating to 210kt;
• intercept ILS heading 210kt decelerating to 190kt;
• final approach 190kt until 800ft reducing to 160 - 165kt to the threshold.

5.12.2 Holding Speeds: At FL140 and below, Concorde is permitted to hold at 250kt. The aircraft will adjust its outbound leg and radius of turn so as to remain within the normal holding area. Above FL140, 280kt.

5.12.3 The 'Concorde Arrival Procedure'

Concorde will always endeavour to arrive at the holding facility with a holding capacity of 15 minutes.

This is possible for New York flights provided that there has not been excessive ground holding at JFK, but not possible for Barbados flights.

When the crew has made an accurate assessment of the actual holding capacity for Concorde, they will contact British Airways Flight Technical Dispatch (BA FTD) with this time. Approximately 30 minutes before ETA OCK, BA FTD will contact the TC Traffic Manager and request an estimate of the arrival delay at the ETA for Concorde at the holding facility.

If the expected delay is in excess of 15 minutes or exceeds the actual holding capacity of the aircraft, BA FTD may request a ‘Concorde Arrival Procedure’. The TC Traffic Manager should make every effort to accede to this request. The TC Traffic Manager will advise TC Heathrow and the TC GS South that the Concorde Arrival Procedure is in use. The TC GS South will in turn advise appropriate TC Sector controllers and the TC South Coordinator.

When the Concorde Arrival Procedure is in use, the aircraft will be vectored from the stack ensuring the minimum of delay at the holding facility. In order to reduce the workload of TC Heathrow, and to mitigate against the adverse effects of a potential radio failure, TC OCK should coordinate with TC Heathrow INT South and arrange for the aircraft to be released at the lowest practicable stack level. If EAT procedures are in force, the TC Traffic Manager must allocate the aircraft with an EAT which will ensure that it can make an approach at Heathrow with minimum delay. Neither the TC Traffic Manager nor TC Heathrow controllers are to seek another British Airways ‘donor’ aircraft with which to swap an EAT.

Due to the obviously sensitive nature of this procedure, TC sector controllers are not to discuss Concorde related EAT improvements, expeditious approaches, or use the phrase ‘Concorde Arrival Procedure’ over RTF.

Whenever the Concorde arrival procedure is used, the TC Traffic Manager will make a note to this effect in the TC Traffic Managers Log.