As pilots, the transition from IFR to safely land the airplane VFR sometimes presents a difficult task. A perfectly executed, stabilized final approach can often get very unstable during this transition segment.
At DH or MDA PAPI is recognized as part of the runway environment and may be used to descend below DH or MDA to 100 ft. above the Threshold Crossing Height (TCH).
On the transition from Instruments to Visual, we no longer monitor the Glideslope as our concentration point is the runway environment in front of us. During the transition from the glideslope vertical Guidance to the Threshold, using the PAPI’s for vertical Guidance, will ensure a stabilized transition.
PAPI’s provide obstruction Clearance for a wedge that is 10 degrees wide on either side of the runway centerline out to a distance of 4 miles from the units. The recommendation is to use the PAPI for Vertical guidance at DH or MDA (if visible) and use them as your vertical guidance until crossing the Threshold.
In this training video, you will see a perfectly executed descend to land from DH on an ILS Approach at night, following the above described procedure. Note that descending from DH the PAPI’s are kept Red over White until the TCH.
Try this sometime and if your landings improve, send us an email at email@example.com and let us know.