Check in 45 minutes before takeoff. I will meet my copilot. Schedule today: ARN-GOT, GOT-ARN, ARN-CPH, CPH-SVG (night stop). First day out of five.
Met info, latest news, flight plan, crew list - everything is found in the computer.
Besides, we have our RM (Route Manual) containing everything we need to know about destinations, fuel planning and other goodies.
Let us start with the met info.


ESGG 060418 060612 VRB03KT 0100 FG BKN001 BECMG 0810 5000 BR SCT008
This is the Forecast, sent at 04.18 and valid from 06.00 until 12.00. Wind variable, visibility 100 meters in fog, broken layer of clouds at 100 ft, becoming from 08.00 until 10.00, visibility 5000 meters, scattered clouds at 800 ft.
This does not look to good, letīs look at the actual weather.

35002KT R03/0400 R21/0200FG BKN000 08/08 Q1026

We need minimum 300 m visibility to make a CAT II approach.
Our flight is SK149. I will find that one in the computer. The flightplan is stored (that is filed by SAS for a longer period of time, 149 is a daily flight). Zero fuel weight (everything onboard, except fuel) is estimated to 38.9 tons. We must have two alternates, check the METAR: ESGJ looks fine. The other one, EKYT Aalborg in Denmark is OK. We need fuel for the most distant alternate. I will enter the alternate and the computer will give me the flightplan, based on standard fuel. In this weather situation, I decide to take 45 minutes extra holding fuel (that is 1 800kg on a DC9)


Standard fuel:
  • TAXI fuel.
  • TRIP fuel, fuel from departure to arrival longest SID and most unfavourable landing RW.
  • CONTINGENCY fuel, to cover unexpected deviations.
  • ALTERNATE fuel, from destination to alternate.
  • FINAL RESERVE fuel, 30 minutes at 1500ft above the alternate.
This will give me the minimum fuel, then as a commander I can put extra fuel on top of this. If I expect holding, icing conditions, lower flightlevel or anything else, based on my experience. Today we need those 1 800 kg extra.
  • TAXI - 200kg (DC9 standard)
  • TRIP - 2 100kg
  • CONTINGENCY - 500kg (DC9 standard)
  • ALTERNATE - 900kg
  • FINAL RESRVE - 1 200kg (DC9 standard 2 400 per hour).
  • EXTRA fuel - 1 800kg
This will give us a total of 6 700kg

Fuel planning is an extremely complicated matter. In flighsim I use the following method.
2 000kg to cover taxi, contingency and final reserve. 3 000kg/hour, from takeoff via destination to alternate. I think this method can be used when flying all aircraft in the middle weight class 20 - 100 ton takeoff weight.

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