Aviation radiobeacons in the Schiphol area


Last updated: 23AUG2003 1530 UTC

All pictures made by Robert van der Leije

If you want to check out my (still) small collection of radiobeacons in other (foreign) areas, click here
If you want to check out some other "beaconeering" site, visit the one of Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers with some very clear pictures.


Below is a list of aids to airnavigation in the area around Schiphol. The navigations aids associated with ILS or MLS are not listed, except for the markerbeacons and "locators" outside the airport. A picture will show the beacon itself and the surrounding environment. Apart from a description telling some nice-to-know details about the beacon there is a structured table with the basic information. The explanation for this standard table is as follows:

Type
Type of radio navigation aid
Frequency
Radiofrequency (or frequencies) of the transmitter
ID
The identification of the beacon, normally transmitted in morse code (CW) 24hrs a day
Tx details
Known details about the range/coverage of the navigation aid
Co-ordinates
Geographical co-ordinates (latitude/longitude) of the facility, according the WGS84 standard
Place
Nearby hamlet, village, town or city
Municipality
Appropriate local authority for the grounds where the facility is located
Roadaccess
Name of the road which gives physical access to the facility or (at least) a viewing possibility
Current status
Status of the facility


AMS

AMS

Type VOR/DME
Frequency 113.950 MHz (VOR)

ch86y [1110+1046 MHz] (DME)

ID A M S(.-  --  ...)
Tx Details designated operational  coverage

60 NM/FL250

Co-ordinates 5219'58"N  00442'20"E
Place Hoofdddorp
Municipality Haarlemmermeer
Roadaccess Vijfhuizerweg
Current status active

The second "terminal" VOR for Schiphol is AMS, clearly referring to Amsterdam. AMS does not have a long history: it is only a couple of years active, initially beginning service somewhere at the centerline of runway 06. In January 1998 Alfa Mike Sierra was moved to a place north of Hoofddorp. AMS is really a supplementary VOR-station compared with SPL and is only used in a couple of procedures. The most important function of AMS is defining a climb-out corridor in northern direction for aircraft taking off from runways 36C and 36L ("Zwanenburgbaan" and "Polderbaan resp.). You can spot AMS from the Vijfhuizerweg (the road from Schiphol to the village of Vijfhuizen), between the Hoofdweg Westzijde and the IJweg, where it stands peacefully in the agricultural area. Since the opening of the Polderbaan you can also come closer to it by travelling to the beginning of RWY 36L on the western side.


CH

CH

Type NDB/locator
Frequency 388.5 kHz
ID C H (-.-.  ....)
Tx details designated operational range

15 NM

Co-ordinates 5213'14"N  00433'27"E
Place Buiten-Kaag
Municipality Haarlemmermeer
Roadaccess Hoofdweg Westzijde
Current status active

Charlie Hotel is the NDB/locator in use for ILS approaches to runway 06 at Schiphol ("Kaagbaan"). It is 14442 meters away from the runway threshold and is located just in the south-west corner of the Haarlemmermeer polder, in the small village of Buiten-Kaag. It is very close to the canal "Ringvaart" surrounding the Haarlemmermeer polder which connects here to a group of lakes known as the "Kager Plassen". The Kager Plassen are a prominent landmark from the air and is probably the visual spot pilots have in mind when approaching Charlie Hotel.... You will find the CH beacon along the Hoofdweg Westzijde- lane, but it is also easy to spot from the other side of the "Hoofdvaart" (some of the bigger canals inside the Haarlemmermeer polder).


NV

NV

Type NDB/locator
Frequency 332 kHz
ID N V  (-.  ...-)
Tx details designated operational range

15 NM

Co-ordinates 5209'05"N  00445'53"E
Place Nieuwkoop
Municipality Nieuwkoop
Roadaccess Provincialeweg No. 10 (N231)
Current status active

November Victor is the locator for ILS approaches to runway 36R at Schiphol ("Aalsmeerbaan") and the "N" in the ID is likely to be a reference to Nieuwkoop. In the past NV was known with a 3-character ID, SNV (Sierra November Victor) but to emphasise its function as runway locator only it now has the normal 2 character ID. NV is 15537 meters away from the 36R runway. Of all landing runways (still) fitted with a NDB/locator, 36R is the less used landing runway. Apart from the frequent south-westerly winds in Holland there is also a noise reason for this fact: the village of Aalsmeer, not so small anymore, is pretty close to the threshold of 36R. The location of the transmitter site is just outside the built-up area of Nieuwkoop, north of the N231 "Provincialeweg". Driving over this N231 you pass the site at close quarters. The small district of "Nieuwkoop-Buytewech" is a new part of Nieuwkoop which is also north of the N231 and close to NV. Without being rude to the Nieuwkoop people, from the air-perspective their village is not the main visual clue of NV. A much more prominent landmark from the air is the typically shaped group of lakes just south and east of Nieuwkoop, named the "Nieuwkoopse Plassen".


OA

OA

Type NDB/locator
Frequency 395 kHz
ID O A (---  .-)
Tx details designated operational range

15 NM

Co-ordinates 5228'13"N  00445'12"E
Place Assendelft
Municipality Zaanstad
Roadaccess Veenpolderdijk
Current status active

Oscar Alfa is the locator for ILS approaches to runway 18C at Schiphol ("Zwanenburgbaan") and its ID is probably a reference to the location of the beacon slightly east ("oost" in dutch) of the village Assendelft. At this location the green threshold lights of 18C are 15473 meters away. The transmittersite is next to the most northern farmershouse along the Veenpolderdijk. You can also spot this beacon briefly from the Communicatieweg which is a road between Assendelft and Westzaan. At the eastern end of this Communicatieweg (you cross the canal "Nauernasche Vaart" there) there is a watertower which is clear landmark both from the ground and the air.


PAM/Pampus VOR

PAM

Type DVOR/DME
Frequency 117.800 MHz (VOR)

ch125x [1149+1212 MHz] (DME)

ID P A M (.--.  .-  --)
Tx details designated operational coverage

80NM/FL 500,

in south-west sector 120NM

and in north+north-west sector 150NM

Co-ordinates 5220'05"N  00505'32"E
Place Muiden
Municipality Muiden
Roadaccess Dijkweg
Current status active

The name "Pampus" of this VOR-station refers to a tiny island located in the lake "IJmeer" near Amsterdam. This 'island' is actually a big fortress, one of the 42 (!) fortresses forming the "Stelling van Amsterdam". This Stelling van Amsterdam was a defense line built between 1883 and 1920. This 135 kilometers long defense line was built around capital Amsterdam and is known as the only fortification based on the control of water. The artillery operating from the fortresses could flood the surrounding polders in a rapid way making the defense line hard to cross. Fortress Pampus was ment to attack enemy warships should they approach Amsterdam from the Zuiderzee (this is lake IJsselmeer before the Afsluitdijk was built). The VOR itself is about 2 nautical miles south-east of this island, on the main land between Muiden and Muiderberg. Pampus VOR serves as one of the en-route VOR's in the Netherlands, e.g. the airways R1, B31 and B1 route via PAM. Some eastbound SIDs from Schiphol go overhead Pampus VOR. The location close to locator WP (heading 260 for 2.2 NM) makes PAM a nice fix for the ATC controllers when runway 27 is in use as landing runway, assisting in (nearly) straight-in approaches for the inbounds from ARTIP. Pampus VOR lies in the farmlands but can be spot from the Dijkweg which is a secondary road between Muiden and Muiderberg, and runs over the dyke along lake "IJmeer".


SPL/Schiphol VOR

SPL

Type DVOR/DME
Frequency 108.400 MHz (VOR)

ch21x [982+1045 MHz] (DME)

ID S P L (...  .--.  .-..)
Tx details designated operational coverage

60NM/FL 250

Co-ordinates 5219'56"N  00445'00"E
Place Schiphol
Municipality Haarlemmermeer
Roadaccess Tweeduizend El
Current status active

Sierra Papa Lima is the most important VOR station for Schiphol Airport, as it is used in almost all arrival and departure procedures for radial- and distance information. This is the beacon where inbound aircraft are many times cleared to by ATC before they are put into the traffic pattern by means of radar vectors. In many SIDs, this beacon is used to follow a certain outbound radial or for distance checking to comply with the designated departureroute. In the past SPL was located just south of the airport, but the expansion of the airport forced the aviation authorities to move the beacon to its present location close to the threshold of runway 18C ("Zwanenburgbaan"). SPL is on the western side of a typical long and straight polderroad, called the Tweeduizend El. From here, you can see aircraft landing on 18C, with the control tower in the background.


SPY/Spijkerboor VOR

SPY

Type DVOR/DME
Frequency 113.300 MHz (VOR)

ch80xh (DME)

ID S P Y (...  .--.  -.--)
Tx details designated operational coverage

100 NM/FL500 - in NW sector

increased to 150 NM

Co-ordinates 5232'25"N  00451'14"E
Place Spijkerboor
Municipality Beemster
Roadaccess Wormerweg
Current status active

Spijkerboor VOR is the most important VOR station in the Netherlands, if  you take the number of crossing airways here as the primary criterion. As a result, SPY is really a busy junction of airtraffic, although some of  the action is really at high level, hardly to be noticed on the ground. Apart from its en-route airway-function, it is also used sometimes as a special holdingfix, not for regular stackcontrol of inbound aircraft but e.g. when a single aircraft needs to wait for weather improvement or sort out technical problems. A couple of the Schiphol SIDs lead via SPY, as the entry to the airways towards Eelde VOR or just to mark a turnpoint (nightSIDs 01L). The location of SPY compared to the OA locator of runway 18C of Schiphol (5.5 NM to the south-west ) makes SPY an ATC-lovely to give inbound aircraft from north and east a (semi) straight in approach to 18C, without the need to fly a complete downwindpattern, just like Pampus VOR for eastern approaches to runway 27. In the past there was also a NDB at the Spijkerboor site, but like many other en-route NDB's (Enkhuizen NDB e.g.) it was removed. The Spijkerboor VOR is located in the southwest of an area known as "De Beemster", one of the typical old-dutch 'polders'. This corner of the polder is known as "Spijkerboor", which explains the name of SPY. The most important point of interest is the "Fort bij Spijkerboor", an old fortress which is visible from the ground but a bit too hidden to form a real airview mark. Like the island of Pampus, it is a part of the old capital defense line "Stelling van Amsterdam". The beacon itself is located well inside the farmfields. You can still have a good view of the beacon from the "Wormerweg" which is east of SPY. Zuiderweg en Volgerweg are roads with a slightly more distant view on the object, surrounding the site.


WP

WP

Type NDB/locator
Frequency 376 kHz
ID W P (.--  .--.)
Tx details designated operational range

15 NM

Co-ordinates 5219'34"N  00501'59"E
Place Muiden
Municipality Muiden
Roadaccess parallelweg A1 (highway)
Current status active

Whiskey Papa is the locator for ILS approaches to runway 27 at Schiphol ("Buitenveldertbaan") and its ID is without a doubt a reference to Weesp, a place south of this beacon. From this beacon, it's 16119 meters to the west before reaching the threshold of 27. Despite its reference to Weesp, the beacon is actually located on the territory of Muiden, famous of its historic castle "Muiderslot". When taking the exit "Muiden" from the A1 highway you can drive in western direction along the southern "parallelweg". After 2 kilometers you can see WP in the distance, with the outskirts of Weesp in the background. If you do not want to leave the highway for a more relaxed view, remember that you can have a quick look at WP when at the 10.1 km marking of the highway. Look south in the direction of Weesp at that point, it's quite in the middle of farmersland, at a place where two high tension lines (one from Flevoland, one from 't Gooi) come close to eachother to get over the small land east of the Amsterdam-Rijn kanaal to Amsterdam.


Outer Marker runway 36R

OM 36R

Type Outer Marker
Frequency 75 MHz
ID dashes (----- cont.)
Tx details
Co-ordinates 5213'37"N  00446'23"E
Place De Kwakel
Municipality Uithoorn
Roadaccess Jaagpad
Current status active

The outer marker for runway 36 Right is located at 7108 meters from the threshold, near the small village of De Kwakel. The beacon is a bit hidden, but can be viewed at the end of the "Jaagpad", a road which runs north of the canal Amstel-Drechtkanaal.. This is also the spot of marina "Jachthaven W.S.V. Ploegensluis". The marker is behind some barns belonging to a white house with an appropriate anchor-symbol on the front.


Outer Marker runway 06

OM 06

Type Outer Marker
Frequency 75 MHz
ID dashes (----- cont.)
Tx details
Co-ordinates 5215'17"N  00438'53"E
Place Nieuw Vennep/Kabel
Municipality Haarlemmermeer
Roadaccess 't Kabel
Current status active

The outer marker for runway 06 is located at 7192 meters from the threshold, on some agricultural lot in Nieuw-Vennep hamlet "Kabel". This hamlet is just south-east of Nieuw Vennep, organised around a parallel road ('t Kabel) along the road to Burgerveen (Venneperweg). The railwaystation of Nieuw-Vennep is close to this hamlet. From the road 't Kabel and looking between the various houses you can have a view on the marker in the distance.


Outer Marker runway 18C

OM 18C

Type Outer Marker
Frequency 75 MHz
ID dashes (----- cont.)
Tx details
Co-ordinates 5223'53"N  00444'45"E
Place Halfweg
Municipality Haarlemmerliede en Spaarnwoude
Roadaccess Bauduinlaan
Current status active

The outer marker for runway 18 Center is located at 7416 meters from the threshold, on the northern edge of the main Spaarnwoude recreational area, but south of the golflinks . It is surrounded by the trees of Spaarnwoude but you can have a close look at it from the road Bauduinlaan, on a short distance from its crossing with the Zuiderweg.


Outer Marker runway 27

OM 27

Type Outer Marker
Frequency 75 MHz
ID dashes (----- cont.)
Tx details
Co-ordinates 5219'19"N  00454'09"E
Place Watergraafsmeer
Municipality Amsterdam
Roadaccess Ouderkerkerdijk
Current status active

The outer marker for runway 27 is located at 7206 meters from the threshold, between Ouderkerk a/d Amstel and Amsterdam. The marker is located along the Ouderkerkerdijk, just inside Amsterdam territory. The picture was taken from the other side of the river Amstel (municipality of Amstelveen),  at the Amsteldijk-Noord road. On the background you can see the high officebuilding "Rembrand Tower", which was added to the Amsterdam skyline some years ago. Apart from viewing the marker from the Amsteldijk-Noord road (around housenumber 150) you can get at close quarters by moving for 3200 meters along the Ouderkerkerdijk on the eastside of the Amstel, starting from the Burg. Stramanweg-road in Ouderkerk a/d Amstel.

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