(Refer to Figure 25, area 3.) If Dallas Executive (RBD) tower is not in operation, which frequency should be used as a Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF) to monitor airport traffic?
A) 127.25 MHz.
B) 122.95 MHz.
C) 126.35 MHz.
The answer to this question is A.
After locating the Dallas Executive (RBD) airport icon on the chart, look for the airport information text next to the icon. Remember that in the testing supplement legend, you’re actually being told exactly where a lot of information is on the Sectional Chart.
You’ll notice at RBD that there are three frequencies:
1) 127.25* with a star, followed by a blue circled C. The star indicates part-time operation of the tower. Many towered airports close their towers overnight, keeping the airport open for cargo operations and other activity. The frequency that appears before the blue circled C is ALWAYS the Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF), and it’s also the frequency pilots use to monitor local chatter, coordinate arrivals and departures and give their position and acknowledging other aircraft in the traffic pattern.
2) Next, you see ATIS 126.35. ATIS stands for Automatic Terminal Information Service. This is a continuous broadcast of recorded aeronautical information such as weather, active runways, available approaches, NOTAMs, etc.
3) Finally, you see 122.95 which is the UNICOM frequency. The UNICOM frequency is an air to ground communication facility operated by a private agency that pilots contact to request fuel and other non-flight services.
Part of the frustration with learning the frequencies associated with airports is that not all airport report the same frequencies. And while it would make a difference if the tower were to be closed at a different airport, in the case of this particular airport the same frequency is used, 127.25, and this is why 127.25 is the correct answer.