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Instrument Flying Handbook
Navigation Systems
Traditional Navigation Systems

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Instrument Flying


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Human Factors
Chapter 2. Aerodynamic Factors
Chapter 3. Flight Instruments
Chapter 4. Section I
Airplane Attitude Instrument
Using Analog Instrumentation
Chapter 4. Section II
Airplane Attitude Instrument
Using an Electronic Flight

Chapter 5. Section I
Airplane Basic
Flight Maneuvers
Using Analog Instrumentation
Chapter 5. Section II
Airplane Basic
Flight Maneuvers
Using an Electronic Flight

Chapter 6. Helicopter
Attitude Instrument Flying

Chapter 7. Navigation Systems
Chapter 8. The National
Airspace System

Chapter 9. The Air Traffic
Control System

Chapter 10. IFR Flight
Chapter 11. Emergency

VOR RNAV is based on information generated by the present
VORTAC or VOR/DME system to create a WP using an
airborne computer. As shown in Figure 7-22, the value of
side A is the measured DME distance to the VOR/DME. Side
B, the distance from the VOR/DME to the WP, and angle 1
(VOR radial or the bearing from the VORTAC to the WP)
are values set in the flight deck control. The bearing from
the VOR/DME to the aircraft, angle 2, is measured by the
VOR receiver. The airborne computer continuously compares
angles 1 and 2 and determines angle 3 and side C, which is
the distance in NMs and magnetic course from the aircraft
to the WP. This is presented as guidance information on the
flight deck display.

VOR/DME RNAV Components
Although RNAV flight deck instrument displays vary among
manufacturers, most arc connected to the aircraft CDI with a
switch or knob to select VOR or RNAV guidance. There is
usually a light or indicator to inform the pilot whether VOR
or RNAV is selected. [Figure 7-23] The display includes the
WP, frequency, mode in use, WP radial and distance, DME
distance, groundspeed, and time to station.

Onboard RNAV receivers
Figure 7-23. Onboard RNAV receivers have changed significantly.
Originally, RNAV receivers typically computed combined data
from VOR, VORTAC, and/or DME. That is generally not the case
now. Today, GPS such as the (GNC 300 and the Bendix King KLS
88 LORAN receivers compute waypoints based U~OI? embedded
databases and aircraft positional information.

Most VOR/DME RNAV systems have the following airborne

I. Off/On/Volume control to select the frequency of the
VOR/DME station to be used.

2. MODE select switch used to select VOR/DME mode,

a. Angular course width deviation (standard VOR
operation); or

h. Linear cross-track deviation as standard (±5 NM
full scale CDI).

3. RNAV mode, with direct to WP with linear cross-track
deviation of ±5 NM.

4. RNAV/APPR (approach mode) with linear deviation
of ±l.25 NM as full scale CDI deflection.

5. WP select control. Some units allow the storage of more
than one WP; this control allows selection of any WP
in storage.

6. Data input controls. These controls allow user input
of WP number or ident, VOR or LOC frequency WP
radial and distance.

While DME groundspeed readout is accurate only when
tracking directly to or from the station in VOR/DME mode,
in RNAV mode the DME groundspeed readout is accurate on
any track.

Function of VOR/DME RNAV
The advantages of the VOR/DME RNAV system stem from
the ability of the airborne computer to locate a WP wherever it
is convenient, as long as the aircraft is within reception range
of both nearby VOR and DME facilities. A series of these
WPs make up an RNAV route. In addition to the published
routes, a random RNAV route may be flown under IFR if it is
approved by air traffic control (ATC). RNAV DPs and standard
terminal arrival routes (STARs) are contained in the DP and
STAR booklets.

VOR/DME RNAV approach procedure charts are also
available. Note in the VOR/DME RNAV chart excerpt shown
in Figure 7-24 that the WP identification boxes contain the
following information: WP name, coordinates, frequency,
identifier, radial distance (facility to WP), and reference facility
elevation. The initial approach fix (IAF), final approach fix
(FAF), and missed approach point (MAP) are labeled.

To fly a route or to execute an approach under IFR, the RNAV
equipment installed in the aircraft must be approved for the
appropriate IFR operations.

In vertical navigation (VNAV) mode, vertical guidance is
provided, as well as horizontal guidance in some installations. A
WP is selected at a point where the descent begins, and another
WP is selected where the descent ends. The RNAV equipment
computes the rate of descent relative to the groundspeed; on
some installations, it displays vertical guidance information
on the GS indicator. When using this type of equipment
during an instrument approach, the pilot must keep in mind
that the vertical guidance information provided is not part of
the nonprecision approach. Published non precision approach
altitudes must be observed and complied with, unless otherwise
directed by ATC.