|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : fat|
|Altitude||agl bound lower : 1500|
agl bound upper : 1500
|Controlling Facilities||tower : fat|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, Low Wing, 1 Eng, Retractable Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : atp|
pilot : cfi
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 30|
flight time total : 16500
flight time type : 700
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : local|
|Qualification||controller : non radar|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : critical|
other anomaly other
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
other flight crewa
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : declared emergency|
flight crew : overcame equipment problem
|Consequence||faa : reviewed incident with flight crew|
The departure from hwd was VFR to fat which is home base. 40 mi out I attempted a contact on fat approach control frequency. No response. At this time I noticed that my lights were getting dim even though my volt meter showed 11.3 volts and the ammeter needle was centered. I activated my hand-held transmitter. Reception from fat approach control came in loud and clear. The attempt to contact them did not get a response. At this time I did not have any visible lights, outside as well as inside. My flashlight was an aluminum case 2 c-cell batteries. Holding the flashlight for an occasional scan of the instrument panel and the use of the hand-held transmitter, I checked ATIS on 119.3 and received the latest information. I continued to monitor approach control for traffic and was able to observe traffic in my immediate vicinity. As I approached a position that placed me on a 45 to the downwind I changed to tower and attempted contact. The tower did not respond, and I continued to monitor the frequency for traffic. The base leg was close. My position was transmitted at each phase of the flight pattern. The tower was not receiving me. Prior to reaching the tower I heard someone relaying my message to the tower that I was executing a flyby to check for a gear down condition. As I passed the tower they confirmed that my gear was not down. I began the emergency gear lowering procedure. The pilot path was maintained close in and as I turned toward the tower my cranking came to a halt. The gear was down but I had no way to be sure. As I passed by the tower they confirmed that the gear appeared to be down. The landing was uneventful and the taxi to parking was monitored by the crash equipment. Upon shutdown the airport police was there for a short report. During the time that I was answering questions by the police, the FBO linesman yelled to me with a message that the tower was demanding that I answer the phone immediately. By the time that I picked up the phone the person on the other end was, to use a phrase, 'irate.' his first comment to me was, 'don't you know this is an arsa?' the closing comment that I shall make is that I was appalled at the insensitivity to my emergency as compared to the necessity for the air carrier airline to go around 3 times during the emergency. This comment was made 3 different times during our short conversation. I had the distinct impression that he wanted me to go someplace else and 'crash and burn' rather than be a problem to the traffic at fat. The problem for the emergency was the alternator lost the solder on 2 terminals attached to the armature, cause is unknown. A solution is a 60 amp in place of a 50 amp alternator and providing for more cooling to the alternator.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: GA SMA LOSS OF ELECTRICAL POWER AND LOSS OF RADIO COM RESULTS IN EMERGENCY ENTRY INTO ARSA AND EMERGENCY LNDG WHICH CAUSES ACR TO EXECUTE GO AROUND.
Narrative: THE DEP FROM HWD WAS VFR TO FAT WHICH IS HOME BASE. 40 MI OUT I ATTEMPTED A CONTACT ON FAT APCH CTL FREQ. NO RESPONSE. AT THIS TIME I NOTICED THAT MY LIGHTS WERE GETTING DIM EVEN THOUGH MY VOLT METER SHOWED 11.3 VOLTS AND THE AMMETER NEEDLE WAS CENTERED. I ACTIVATED MY HAND-HELD XMITTER. RECEPTION FROM FAT APCH CTL CAME IN LOUD AND CLEAR. THE ATTEMPT TO CONTACT THEM DID NOT GET A RESPONSE. AT THIS TIME I DID NOT HAVE ANY VISIBLE LIGHTS, OUTSIDE AS WELL AS INSIDE. MY FLASHLIGHT WAS AN ALUMINUM CASE 2 C-CELL BATTERIES. HOLDING THE FLASHLIGHT FOR AN OCCASIONAL SCAN OF THE INSTRUMENT PANEL AND THE USE OF THE HAND-HELD XMITTER, I CHKED ATIS ON 119.3 AND RECEIVED THE LATEST INFO. I CONTINUED TO MONITOR APCH CTL FOR TFC AND WAS ABLE TO OBSERVE TFC IN MY IMMEDIATE VICINITY. AS I APCHED A POS THAT PLACED ME ON A 45 TO THE DOWNWIND I CHANGED TO TWR AND ATTEMPTED CONTACT. THE TWR DID NOT RESPOND, AND I CONTINUED TO MONITOR THE FREQ FOR TFC. THE BASE LEG WAS CLOSE. MY POS WAS XMITTED AT EACH PHASE OF THE FLT PATTERN. THE TWR WAS NOT RECEIVING ME. PRIOR TO REACHING THE TWR I HEARD SOMEONE RELAYING MY MESSAGE TO THE TWR THAT I WAS EXECUTING A FLYBY TO CHK FOR A GEAR DOWN CONDITION. AS I PASSED THE TWR THEY CONFIRMED THAT MY GEAR WAS NOT DOWN. I BEGAN THE EMER GEAR LOWERING PROC. THE PLT PATH WAS MAINTAINED CLOSE IN AND AS I TURNED TOWARD THE TWR MY CRANKING CAME TO A HALT. THE GEAR WAS DOWN BUT I HAD NO WAY TO BE SURE. AS I PASSED BY THE TWR THEY CONFIRMED THAT THE GEAR APPEARED TO BE DOWN. THE LNDG WAS UNEVENTFUL AND THE TAXI TO PARKING WAS MONITORED BY THE CRASH EQUIP. UPON SHUTDOWN THE ARPT POLICE WAS THERE FOR A SHORT RPT. DURING THE TIME THAT I WAS ANSWERING QUESTIONS BY THE POLICE, THE FBO LINESMAN YELLED TO ME WITH A MESSAGE THAT THE TWR WAS DEMANDING THAT I ANSWER THE PHONE IMMEDIATELY. BY THE TIME THAT I PICKED UP THE PHONE THE PERSON ON THE OTHER END WAS, TO USE A PHRASE, 'IRATE.' HIS FIRST COMMENT TO ME WAS, 'DON'T YOU KNOW THIS IS AN ARSA?' THE CLOSING COMMENT THAT I SHALL MAKE IS THAT I WAS APPALLED AT THE INSENSITIVITY TO MY EMER AS COMPARED TO THE NECESSITY FOR THE ACR AIRLINE TO GO AROUND 3 TIMES DURING THE EMER. THIS COMMENT WAS MADE 3 DIFFERENT TIMES DURING OUR SHORT CONVERSATION. I HAD THE DISTINCT IMPRESSION THAT HE WANTED ME TO GO SOMEPLACE ELSE AND 'CRASH AND BURN' RATHER THAN BE A PROB TO THE TFC AT FAT. THE PROB FOR THE EMER WAS THE ALTERNATOR LOST THE SOLDER ON 2 TERMINALS ATTACHED TO THE ARMATURE, CAUSE IS UNKNOWN. A SOLUTION IS A 60 AMP IN PLACE OF A 50 AMP ALTERNATOR AND PROVIDING FOR MORE COOLING TO THE ALTERNATOR.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.