07/09/2011

A DC3 seen undetected!

While sitting on a Genthod terrace Friday lunchtime I saw and heard the Breitling DC3 come in to land. How come the GAME system missed it?

 


Genthod, Friday 8 July, just after 12h40: the sound of an approaching aircraft deemed different and interesting. When it passed overhead I saw that it was the Douglas DC3 of Breitling, operated by the Super Constellation Flyers Association. It is always a pleasure to see it, even though it has visited Geneva seven times since mid-April.

Later in the day I checked on the ARAG site to see exactly when it landed. Very surprisingly, I found no trace of it, even in "hidden" files detailing all of the transponder emissions for  the whole day. This is so strange that I sent off a message to SkyGuide to ask if they knew whether it had flown without an active transponder: no reply as yet (but patience is a virtue!).

It is sure that the aircraft came in: on the web site of the Super Constellation Flyers Association there is a schedule of all of its likely flights. This site confirmed that it was scheduled to come from Buochs on that Friday, then go back there the following day (today, as I write this). Note that if you are a member of that Association you can ask to go on one of its flights: an interesting experience of what flying was like not long after the war.

As I write this, the aircraft has not been detected going out. The question of non-detection is actually quite important: has it got a new type of transponder and/or a new ICAO Identification number, or has it simply flown with an inactive transponer?

Mysterious indeed!

ps: After I asked the Association about the incident I quickly got the reply that because of a doubt about the veracity of the altitude indications, the Air Traffic Control authorised the pilot to turn off the transponder. This, and other incidents, confirms that for information about incidents it is almost always best to ask the people directly concerned, rather than the airport authorities!

17:57 Posted in Unusual aircraft | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: breitling, dc3, geneve | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

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