Tower PV Discussion

pubatc

Newcomer
Feb 11, 2010
13
0
1
Re: Tower PV

hi, can you please eloborate on your experiences in the tower training program. I am scheduled to start class in a week and hopefully graduate on may 26. just wondering how things are going and if you think is harder than those before you that took the course. any other info would also be helpful. thanks for everything.
 

Barney13

Senior Member
Jun 12, 2009
187
0
16
66
where u all wanna be...
Re: Tower PV

It's not really harder, but now there are 6 different pv,s and you do not see the same one twice.. there is absolulety nothing on the PV's you have not already seen in the regular scenarios, You will see 7 problems a day for 13 days. We had 10 retakes in the 2 classes that pv'ed thursday and friday.
3 people were unsuccessful. See ya next week..
 

tinkluver

Rookie
Jun 11, 2009
52
2
8
Re: Tower PV

My class and another PV for tower on the 26th and 27th of April.
This is not helpful, STL2CVG. We want answers on what the new PV will be like, not the date of your future PV. Unless you have answers....:D:hurray::tap::hug::hugs::eek:

See ya manana!
 

STL2CVG

Senior Analyst
Feb 2, 2009
893
2
18
Cincinnati
Re: Tower PV

This is not helpful, STL2CVG. We want answers on what the new PV will be like, not the date of your future PV. Unless you have answers....:D:hurray::tap::hug::hugs::eek:

See ya manana!
Um I was just updating what the person that posted above me asking about tower PV's!
 

pubatc

Newcomer
Feb 11, 2010
13
0
1
Re: Tower PV

Hey thanks for the info and knowing that we will see seven problems a day for 13 days(91 total problems ?) is nice.
 

serps311

Newcomer
Sep 25, 2009
2
0
1
I will be totally honest here. The terminal option at the academy is the easiest thing you will ever do in your career. If you struggle on scenairos or on the PV I would suggest choosing a different career. It sounds harsh but its is the most true thing you will ever hear.
 

Muneco

Senior Analyst
Jan 13, 2009
1,178
5
38
Tower PV are 2 parts. One is local, the other is ground. Thats all I know. Center PV consists of being able to control airports without a tower, airports without approach control, and all overflights in your sector, pointing out and handing off to the next sector/center. Fun i tell ya....
 

jermscentral

Junior Member
Mar 1, 2009
121
1
18
St. Louis, MO
I PVed on December 7th (Local) and 8th (Ground). There are at least 12 different problems that can be run in the PV, so telling someone now what to expect is kind of pointless unless you happen to get the exact same one, and even then, every problem is inherently different because the slightest difference in the timing of your transmissions or the difference in which you allow two aircraft to taxi to the runway will make it a completely new problem anyway. However, there are some items that are not unique to each problem and that you WILL encounter. These are the same problems you encounter in all of your TSS scenarios, so it's nothing you've never seen. There are no surprises, no helicopters, no overflights, no aborted takeoffs, no IFR conditions, no emergencies, etc.

Local run: Expect to run a problem similar to problems 9 and 13 from the TSS. Problem 9 is actually a night problem, but the level of traffic and the type of traffic you have is similar to the PV. Problems 1-12 get progressively more difficult, with problem 12 being the most traffic you'll work. The idea is to take you past PV level and then bring you back to it on problem 13 so you don't panic. Besides, you need problem 13 to get readjusted to the slower level of traffic that you'll encounter in the PV, or you'll be tempted into trying to depart a heavy between two arrivals that are 4 miles apart -- when, if you look at your IFR arrival strips, you'll see that you have a 10 minute gap behind those arrivals in which to depart aircraft. Back to the PV. You will need to be on the lookout for 1.) at least one fast moving VFR aircraft calling up from somewhere like 7E or 7S wanting to land, and you have to work your pattern around him; and 2.) at least one Rwy 16 departure that is timed to arrive at the runway just in time to get him out before a 757/heavy departure, or seeing if you'll wait out the 2-minute wake turbulence timer before launching him.

Ground PV: You may think this will be easy, and some of the problems (from what I heard) were not as difficult as people thought they'd be. Expect the airport vehicle to want to go from Spartan Aviation up to the VORTAC and back, as this shows how well you can coordinate with LC while handling your traffic; also expect a few traffic jams and scenarios where you could potentially run nose-to-nose with other aircraft or where you will need to hold one aircraft to let another pass. Don't be afraid to use Charlie-India-Alpha from the Main Ramp to 28R instead of just India-Alpha.

After going through it having seen everything written here, I can see why no one really responds on these kinds of threads. Even if you're OTS, you have an excellent chance of passing. All of the stuff I've mentioned above is nearly verbatim from what the instructors will tell you, so it's not insider/secret information, and you will learn how to handle all of those situations properly. The main thing you need to do is calm your nerves, which is easier said than done. Luckily for me, my local run was the day right after we had a night shift, so that quick turnaround coupled with nerves made me pretty tired before I went into the run, and oddly enough, that stifled the nerves enough to be successful in the run.

We had two people from our class and one from our sister class (total of 36 students) that, unfortunately, did not make it.
 

jenn524

Newcomer
Sep 17, 2010
7
0
1
I am taking the PV next week, and I have been told by my lead intructor (who knows the .65 by heart) that we cannot use Charlie-India-Alpha... we have to use India-Alpha. Mainly because ground is easy as it is, and using India-Alpha creates conflicts. Also, say you have a APT 1 going from the crash shack to Spartan Aviation, we cannot use just Hotel anymore, we have to use India-Hotel. Hope this helps :)
 

jermscentral

Junior Member
Mar 1, 2009
121
1
18
St. Louis, MO
I am taking the PV next week, and I have been told by my lead intructor (who knows the .65 by heart) that we cannot use Charlie-India-Alpha... we have to use India-Alpha. Mainly because ground is easy as it is, and using India-Alpha creates conflicts. Also, say you have a APT 1 going from the crash shack to Spartan Aviation, we cannot use just Hotel anymore, we have to use India-Hotel. Hope this helps :)
Our lead told us we could use those shortcuts, but another one said you couldn't.

We used them. :)

The PV evaluators don't necessarily know the "rules" set forth by your instructors; rather, they are looking to see that you know what you're doing. Hesitation is a killer. Questioning your own instructions is a killer. Losing sight of the VFR pattern is a definite (and quite possibly the biggest) killer. My GC evaluator didn't even ask why I moved my traffic that way, because it is technically a valid method, as you are instructing the aircraft to enter the movement area at a specific intersection. The non-movement areas are exactly that, and in the real world, they can move around just about anywhere they want on the ramp as long as they don't enter a movement area.

In any case, HAVE FUN with it. The last week may feel stressful, but it becomes boat loads of fun -- especially problem 12! It used to be called "The Humbler", but they supposedly removed about 10-15% of the aircraft that were in the original, so it's now just a fun problem to run.

GOOD LUCK! And enjoy your new career; it's the best job I've ever had!
 

arons440

Newcomer
Feb 11, 2009
24
0
1
Houston
Our class is getting ready to PV tower in 2 weeks. No doubt, nerves are the biggest enemy of us all. We are half way through the TSS scenarios, and according to hear-say things won't get much more complex. We have simultaneous T/G's, multiple VFR's inbound for the FS, and a rack full of IFR's arrivals and departures. In addition to all the other recommendations mentioned on other PV discussions, "pad management" is another aspect that seems to make or break many during busier runs.
 

PapaGolf

Trusted Member
Jun 18, 2009
382
1
18
Biscuit
This may have already been covered, I apologize for being lazy..

While running TSS scenarios in the sim is the entire class present? i.e. your classmates in the sim lab behind you able to watch? What about for the PV?
 

jermscentral

Junior Member
Mar 1, 2009
121
1
18
St. Louis, MO
This may have already been covered, I apologize for being lazy..

While running TSS scenarios in the sim is the entire class present? i.e. your classmates in the sim lab behind you able to watch? What about for the PV?
Note: This is just for Tower classes.

There are 14 or 15 TSS cabs in which you do your runs and in which you'll ultimately do your PV. The only time we had the whole class of 15 in one lab was when we convinced one of the instructors to run problem 12 and have the computer run ground control.

For all runs up through problem 9, there are typically five people in the cab: You, your classmate running the other position, an instructor with each of you, and a ghost pilot. Once you get to problem 10, there are two ghost pilots in the room, since the problems are difficult enough to warrant one ghost pilot on local and one on ground to correct any errors the computer doesn't initially pick up, or to assist you if the computer can't read back certain things (such as "continue taxiing" instructions). You will occasionally have your classroom instructor as a TSS instructor, but do your best to not let it get to you. I was notorious for partially freezing when Todd, our lead, was sitting on local with me, as were a couple in my class, but several of my classmates said they felt more comfortable when he was around. YMMV. You may also have your instructor wander between cabs (since they're all connected and have a small walkway that lets you walk in one door in cab 12 and walk all the way down to cab 7 without going back into the hallway) to silently sneak in and listen to you work.

The scenarios are such that you might freak out while doing the runs, but always remember that these are just computer graphics that get reset every 45 minutes. If you think you're going to crash something, fix it. If you can't, you'll definitely have it as a learning experience, and you won't make that same mistake again -- especially since you're likely to see a similar scenario later in the day. Once you get to your facility, you'll wonder why you ever had doubts at the Academy.


On the PV, there are only six people in the room: you, your tower team control partner (if you work ground, they're local, and vice versa), the local control PV evaluator, the ground control PV evaluator, a local control ghost pilot, and a ground control ghost pilot. Your instructors are not allowed to be in the room with you while you PV.

I was given good advice going into the PV -- have your headset on with the boom mic in the "down" position, pen in hand, ready to walk in and conquer the problem when the evaluators call you into the cab to start your PV. They'll provide you with paper (the same wake turbulence sheet you've seen throughout TSS); just plug in, let them know you're ready, and get to work. Good luck, and have fun!
 
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Stinger

Epic Member
May 24, 2009
1,563
22
38
Our class is getting ready to PV tower in 2 weeks. No doubt, nerves are the biggest enemy of us all. We are half way through the TSS scenarios, and according to hear-say things won't get much more complex. We have simultaneous T/G's, multiple VFR's inbound for the FS, and a rack full of IFR's arrivals and departures. In addition to all the other recommendations mentioned on other PV discussions, "pad management" is another aspect that seems to make or break many during busier runs.
Just make sure before you launch a Runway 16 departure, you know where all of your VFR pattern traffic is. When they drop off the radar and just touched down, sometimes they might be a little difficult to see. You also might be tempted to take a quick glance at the radar and see no conflict for the 16 departure totally missing the guy that just touched down. If that's the case and you launch the 16, bad news bears!

Don't ask me how I know this one haha