Question about WKOX

Brian Vita
Tue Apr 11 22:14:29 EDT 2006

As a pilot, I will answer your question.

What you are hearing is a non-directional beacon (NDB) that is transmitting
on 402KHz.  It transmits the Morse identifier LW to identify it as HAGET to
a pilot getting a fix off of it.  Since it is colocated within an approach
(runway 5/23)it carries the additional title of "Compass Locator" and only
has a two letter identifier (most NDB's have a three letter one).

Since NDB's are AM and non-directional, the FAA has been in the process of
phasing them out over the last few years.  HAGET may survive longer than
some because of its approach fix status.

Here's a link to the "approach plate" that a pilot would use to land on RWY5
at Lawrence Airport using the NDB:

The chart also references a second NDB called BEDDS broadcasting on 332Khz.
It's part of the approach to Bedford's RWY 11 and also carries a two letter
ID of BE.  There's also references to the Manchester NH, Lawrence and Boston
VOR (VHF Omni range) beacons that transmit radials that a pilot can tune in
and basically "ride in" to an airport or another location.

There's a similar NDB located just off of Beverly airport called Topsfield
(big surprise) and it transmits TOF on 269Khz.

As a side note, just for giggles, there's proof that the FAA has a sense of
humor (or more likely, some cartographer slipped this by them...).  If you
were to fly one of the approaches to Pease, NH, you would fly from one fix
(an imaginary point in space that is defined by either a beacon or the
intersection of two radials off of an NDB) to the next.  All of these fixes
have names so that you can tell the controller where you are.  The approach
fixes into Pease AFB are named ITAWT ITAWA PUDYE TTAT IDEED.  These names
may not look like much on paper until you say them aloud. 

The link to the chart is:

(For the phonetically declined, it would be pronounced "I Thought I SAW A
PUDDY TATT, I DID". Personally I think that its scarier that you'd take a
right turn at SATAN (see chart). 

Cinema Service & Supply, Inc.
Brian Vita
77 Walnut St - Ste 4
Peabody, MA  01960-5691
tel: 978-538-7575
fax: 978-538-7550
AIM: btvita

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