Aviation training refers to all training related to the aviation industry. This includes pilot training, maintenance engineers, ground handling, air traffic control, airport emergency services, cabin crew, check in staff and security personnel.
The aviation industry relies on a high level of aviation training to ensure that the aviation industry is safe and operates efficiently for the traveling public. The aviation training industry employs many thousands of people with high levels of expertise in their respective fields.
Flying College/Pilot College/Aviation school/Flying School/Flying Club
There are a number of terms by which organisations that offer people to learn to fly may be known: such as Flying College, Pilot College, Flying School, Aviation School or Flying Club. These are all essentially the same thing and there is nothing particular that differentiates one from another.
The things that make a company a good one to learn to fly with are things such as:
• The number of Instructors available (Instructor: Student ratio)
• The experience of the Flying Instructors
• The number and quality of the aircraft fleet.
• The efficient delivery of aviation theory training.
• A strong management team ensuring quality delivery of training.
• A history of getting trainees through the course in good time.
• An Air Operator certificate which allows a wide range of flight lessons to be delivered to you.
So whether the place you learn to fly is called a flying college, pilot college, aviation school, flying school or flying club as long as it has the above things to offer you, you should have a positive experience with your flight training.
Flight lessons comprise a number of different flight sequences building skills so that the student can become competent in a wide range of flying situations. Flight lessons start with basic flight sequences such as straight and level, climbing and descending, medium level turns, climbing and descending turns, steep turns, stalling, forced landings and take off & landing. After these skills are mastered the flight lessons then progress to navigation skills for the private Pilot Licence. For those wishing to become a professional airline pilot, further flight lessons teach more advanced navigation and aircraft handling skills.
Pilot training may be defined as any activity that prepares a person with skills to act as a pilot of any vessel that flies. This could include pilot training for a fixed wing aircraft, a helicopter, a Hot air balloon, an ultra light aircraft, a paraglider, a glider , hang glider or Airship.
Many people may think of pilot training referring to aircraft training only however there are now many forms by which humans take to the air to fly and all require an intensive pilot training program with an authorized flying college/flying school before being licenced to safely undertake the chosen form of flight.
Flight Lessons Australia / Flight Training Australia/Flying School Australia
Flight training Australia is widely available due to the geography of the country and the vast distances between many places. Australia has a long history of using aircraft to get around and for many people in the outback, it is just like using the family car. You will find flying school Australia in many places, from your major cities where there are large training aerodromes to your small country towns that may have a few light aircraft available for charter and flight lessons Australia.
General aviation commonly refers to that part of the aviation industry that engages in activity other than scheduled commercial airline activity. This may include charter operators, aeromedical operators, agricultural aviation businesses, aviation-based fire-fighting services, training and aerial work such as aerial photography and surveying. It also includes private, business, recreational and sports aviation activity and supporting businesses such as maintenance providers.
Regional aviation refers to that part of the aviation industry that engages in scheduled commercial airline activity between regional areas or between regional areas and capital cities. Traditionally, regional aviation services have been identified as those airlines performing regular public transport services and whose fleets contain exclusively low capacity aircraft (38 seats or less or with a payload of 4,200 kilograms or less). However, Australia’s regional airlines now commonly use larger aircraft. Some regional areas are also serviced by jet aircraft operated by major domestic airlines.
The Australian Constitution gives state and territory governments power over regional aviation as it is largely an issue of intra-state trade.
International aviation is a key driver of Australia’s economy, supporting the growth of tourism, business and trade. The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics reports that in 2007, Australian and foreign airlines carried a record high 22.138 million passengers and nearly 754 000 tonnes of freight on international flights.
Become a Pilot Frequently Asked Questions
Is it hard to learn to fly?
No. People of all shapes and sizes, ages and abilities have learned to fly. It’s fun, and from the beginning of your training, you get to do most of the actual flying! On the practical side—While flying isn’t a difficult skill to learn, you’ll have to be willing to stick with it until you meet all the requirements. Also, you should consider the cost of becoming a pilot—you’ll have to pay for your medical exam, theory exams, books, navigation equipment, maps, charts and your practical flight lessons.
When can I start? Right away. All you have to do is find a flight instructor and sign up for an introductory lesson. You don’t have to have a student pilot’s certificate or a medical certificate to take flying lessons. Of course, you won’t be able to fly solo right away. That takes time and the paperwork according to the rules of CASA.
How many lessons do I have to take before I solo?
It depends on you. There is no set number of lessons or hours of flight training. Your instructor must make sure you have learned to perform certain maneuvers before allowing you to solo. These maneuvers include safe takeoffs and landings. You must use good judgment when flying and be able to keep control of the aircraft.
Also, you’ll have to get a medical certificate and a student pilot’s licence to fly solo.
Is flying safe? Yes. A well-built and well-maintained aircraft flown by a competent and prudent pilot is as safe or safer than many other forms of transportation.
If engine failure occurs, what will happen? Modern aircraft engines are reliable and failure rarely occurs. However, your lessons will cover what to do in this situation, including selecting a good landing area and safely landing.
Getting started – Achieving your Private Pilot Licence
Introduction to flying training and the flying school
The first step in taking up flying, as a career or just for pleasure, is to undertake a Trial Instructional Flight, or TIF, at a licensed flying club or training organisation. This trial flight will most likely lead to a few lessons after which you should be able to decide whether you want to continue flying training. Your instructor will also be able to make an assessment of your potential to handle an aircraft.
During the initial stages of flight instruction you will always be with a flight instructor. You will be taught the basics of flight in preparation for your first solo flight in the circuit area (rectangular pattern flown around an aerodrome), but will be familiarised with the local training area, usually a ten mile area around the airport. During this time you consolidate your training and build flying experience. Most likely, you will be ready to fly solo after approximately 15-20 hours of instruction. However each subsequent solo flight must be authorised by your instructor. Before you can fly solo, you will need to pass the required medical checks, pass an examination in Air Law and be issued with a Student Pilot Licence (STUDENT).
To be issued the SPL, you must be at least 16 years of age and be capable of reading, writing, speaking and understanding the English language. You will also need to obtain an ARN (Aviation Reference Number) from CASA, supply photographs and identification documentation, and complete a security check. If you have set your sights on a career in aviation, this is usually the time that your school will advise you of options for commercial training. They will also suggest that you undertake the required medical checks which are more exacting for professional pilots to make sure you can satisfy the medical standards before outlaying considerable sums of money on flying training.
Your first solo flight will involve practising take-offs and landings, and general flying within the airport circuit. This is basically a consolidation of everything that you have learned to date, such as operation and effect of controls, straight and level flying, climbing and descending, turning and stalling, for which your instructor found you competent to do on your own.
From this point on, you will focus on preparing for your first area solo where you will demonstrate your ability to fly solo outside the airport circuit but still within the training area used by the school.
Most students are ready to attempt their first area solo after reaching approximately 20 hours. Before you can do so, however, you must pass an examination on the flight procedures pertaining to that training area.
First area solo
Your first solo in the training area will involve practising simulated engine failure during which you will exercise your own judgement, simulate radio calls and trouble checks as well as passenger briefs. It will also include a short navigation exercise to and from the local training area to enable you to demonstrate some chart reading skills.
As you progress, you will learn to fly the aircraft in all situations in preparation for your General Flying Progress Test (GFPT). Before you can undertake this test you first need to pass the Basic Aeronautical Knowledge theory examination.
You will also need at least 20 hours flight time which includes 5 hours as pilot in command and 2 hours instrument time, of which at least 1 hour must be instrument flight time. Having said that, the average student is not ready to attempt the GFPT until the 30 hour mark.
General flying progress test (GFPT)
During this test, you will demonstrate to an approved testing officer that you can competently manage the aircraft in all basic phases of flight. If you pass the test, you will be able to carry passengers in private operations (ie Not for hire or reward) within the confines of the student pilot area limit. Your solo or pilot-in-command flights must still be approved by your instructor.
After the GFPT, you will be able to commence navigation training. The navigation exercises teach the practical skills and airmanship required for flying safely to distant locations plus management of fuel and flight logs, radio communication and transition through different airspace, control zones, unplanned diversions due to weather etc., and circuits at distant locations with landings on different types of surfaces. These skills will then be reinforced and consolidated in preparation for the Private Pilot Licence flight test.
Prior to undertaking the PPL test, you must have acquired at least 40 hours of flight time as a pilot that includes:
5 hours of general flight time as pilot in command; and
5 hours of cross country flight time as pilot in command; and
2 hours of instrument flight time.
You must also pass a theory examination which covers flight rules and air law, navigation, performance and flight planning, meteorology and principles of flight.
Although the minimum experience requirement is 40 hours, the average pilot is ready to attempt the Private Pilot Licence flight test after about 60 hours. You can undertake the PPL flight test while still 16, however, you cannot be issued with the licence until your 17th birthday.
Getting serious – Commercial and Air Transport Pilot Licences
After receiving your PPL you may decide to train for various aircraft endorsements or ratings.
If you wish to continue onto a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL), you will need at least 200 hours of flying experience with specified time as pilot in command, cross country and instrument flight time. If you enrolled in an integrated CPL course of aviation training with this flying school, this time would be reduced to 150 hours. The difference in hours reflects the different approach to training. With the 150 hours course, the theory and flying training are coordinated, whereas for the 200 hour option, they are often arranged separately.
Before you can attempt the CPL flight test you must pass a theory examination, covering similar subject areas as for the PPL but this time to Commercial standard and do a Recommendation Flight with the Chief Flying Instructor. While you may undertake the flight test for the CPL at 17, the licence cannot be issued until your 18th birthday.
Commercial pilot licence (CPL) test
You will be flying with an approved testing officer and will be tested on similar issues as the PPL except that the knowledge and skill areas will be covered more comprehensively.
Passing the CPL test and being issued with the licence entitles you to carry passengers for hire or reward, in association with a licensed air service operator. This licence is needed to operate as a light aircraft charter pilot. You will now be able to fly as pilot in command of single pilot aircraft or as co-pilot in multi-crew aircraft.
Before exercising the privileges of the licence, you must pass more stringent medical examinations in order to obtain a Class 1 medical certificate.
Air transport pilot licence (ATPL)
If you wish to fly as pilot-in-command of a multi-crew aircraft you will need to obtain an ATPL.
To obtain an ATPL you would undertake further theory study in advanced aerodynamics, air law, advanced navigation, human factors, performance and loading, flight planning and meteorology. At the end of the study course, you will need to pass a theory examination which consists of seven separate subject parts. These parts maybe attempted singularly or in any number at a sitting.
To be issued with the actual licence, you must have at least 1500 flying hours, with specified time as pilot in command. The aeroplane licence also sets minimum requirements for cross country, night flying and instrument time. You also need to be 21 or older.
For an ATPL on aeroplanes, you must hold or have held a Command Multi-Engine Instrument Rating.
Endorsement and ratings
Once you have your Private Pilot Licence, you have the option of adding endorsements and ratings to your licence.
Endorsements can be either for a particular type of aircraft or for a class (ie. where a number of aircraft with similar handling capabilities are grouped for endorsement purposes). An initial endorsement on a light twin aeroplane can take 5 to 7 hours to gain.
The four types of ratings are:
Agricultural Rating – for crop spraying, for pest control and fertiliser spreading (commercial licence or higher required)
Instrument Rating – for flying in cloud, day/night, in non visual meteorological conditions.
Instructor Rating – for training other pilots. (commercial licence or higher required)
Night (VFR) Rating – for flying at night (including dusk) in visual meteorological conditions.
To obtain a rating or an endorsement , you will need to complete appropriate training after which a CASA delegate, usually an industry pilot, assesses your competence. Some ratings also involve a theory exam.
Licencing Questions – CASA (direct page available at: http://www.casa.gov.au/fcl/faq_fcl.htm#fcl1 )
How do I convert my overseas licence to an Australian licence?
As a general rule, to convert a foreign licence to an Australian flight crew licence you must pass a Flight Rules and Air Law written examination and a flight test, and obtain an Australian medical certificate. If you want to convert an overseas rating (eg instrument rating or instructor rating) you need to pass a flight test and either an aural examination or written examination. Examinations and flight tests can only be conducted in Australia.
Pilots holding a New Zealand CPL or ATPL can obtain an Australian licence under the Trans Tasman Mutual Recognition Act 1997.
Full details on converting overseas qualifications can be found at the following link to CASA’s website: http://www.casa.gov.au/fcl/overbr.htm
How do I get a rating or an endorsement entered onto my pilot’s licence?
A rating is normally issued by the Approved Testing Officer (ATO) who conducts the flight test by entering a record in the pilot’s logbook. The ATO sends to CASA a notification that the rating has been issued. CASA then updates the pilot’s licence record.
Some delegates are only authorised to conduct the flying training. The rating is then issued by someone else (eg an ATO or a CASA officer).
A Licence re-print will cost $25. An applicant can either fill in the payment form (Form 1137) and attach it to the Rating application – or call CLARC on 1300 737 032.
The same process applies to endorsements, except that an instructor or an approved person may conduct the training and issue a certificate to the applicant, only an ATO with 5.23 delegation may issue the endorsement and/or enter the ’sticky strip’ in the pilot’s logbook.
How long will it take CASA to reissue my licence when I’ve done a rating or endorsement, if I request a reprint?
You should allow up to 10 working days from when CASA receives your documents for your licence to be updated, finance to be completed and the licence to be reissued.
Note: When your rating or endorsement is issued, apart from a few exceptions, the ATO should enter a record in your logbook. Once the entry is made in your logbook, you are authorised to use your rating or endorsement.
My flight crew licence has just been reissued but it’s missing a licence, an endorsement or rating. How can I fix this?
Flight Crew Licences issued by CASA only show authorisations that are currently issued by CASA. Some licences, ratings and endorsements are no longer issued and are therefore not be included when a licence is reissued. For example, a Senior Commercial Pilot Licence is no longer printed on a licence. This also applies to aircraft endorsements that are no longer listed in the Civil Aviation Orders or where a previous model has been included in a class endorsement.
If you hold a licence, rating or endorsement that you think should be included on your licence, please let CASA’s Licensing and Registration Centre (CLARC) know by emailing, faxing or calling CLARC. You will need to provide details about the missing licence, rating or endorsement.
I have been told that a particular rating/endorsement is no longer on my licence because of a change to the CAOs. Where can I find a list and summary of these changes?
The Flight Crew Licensing Manual or Civil Aviation Orders (CAO) 40.1.0 for aeroplanes and CAO 40.3.0 for helicopters.
I’ve applied for a job overseas. How do I get a letter of verification for my FCL?
CLARC can issue a standard letter reflecting the pilot’s qualification. You should apply to CASA asking for an FCL Verification Letter (Form 452: Payment Advice – Flight Crew Licence Reports). The letter will be sent to an employer or an overseas licensing authority. There is a $50 fee payable for licence verification letters.
I’ve applied for a job overseas and the overseas organisation wants a letter confirming that I haven’t had any accidents or incidents. Can CASA provide that information?
No, CASA does not hold that information. A Flight Crew Licence Check request form is available on the ATSB website. They will only provide a statement if the request is made by the licence holder.
Who can certify documents?
Anyone who is entitled to witness a Commonwealth Statutory Declaration is acceptable. There are other people who CASA will accept for this purpose such as a CASA delegate, Designated Aviation Medical Examiner (DAME)
Please refer to the list of acceptable persons on the CASA website.
Who can sign a statutory declaration when I’m overseas?
NB: A Statutory Declaration may be made outside of Australia before any of the prescribed people listed in Part 1 or Part 2 of the Statutory Declarations Act 1959 as amended who are authorised to practise under a law in force in a State or Territory of Australia.
Please note that Statutory Declarations made outside of Australia may also be made before an Australian Consular Officer or Australian Diplomatic Officer (within the meaning of the Australian “Consular Fees Act 1985.” )
What is the typical processing time for an ASIC/SPL/other licence etc?
Usually around 4 weeks where a background check is required. If you already hold a valid background check then approximately 1-2 weeks. The process is delayed if there are complications with the security check or the application documents are not filled out correctly.
How do I apply for a Student Pilot Licence (SPL)?
Download the application form and information sheet from the CASA website.
If you are under 18 you do not need to undergo a security check but you do need to prove your nationality with a current passport, full birth certificate citizenship certificate or national ID card.
Can I go solo without my SPL?
No, you need an SPL and a class 2 medical certificate.
How can I obtain a new copy of my FCL?
You can ask CASA for a copy of your licence by sending an email or fax to CLARC. Note there is a fee of $25 for this service. An application form can be downloaded from the CASA website.
I haven’t flown for a long time. Is my licence still current and what do I need to do to fly now?
Flight crew licences issued by CASA remain valid unless suspended or cancelled.Before you fly you must have a current medical certificate, have a current security check status (if over 18) and undergo a flight review with a suitably qualified instructor. You should contact your local flying school to discuss your requirements.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is an operationally independent body within the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government and is Australias prime agency for transport safety investigations. The bureau is entirely separate from transport regulators and service providers. The ATSBs objective is safe transport. Its mission is to maintain and improve transport safety and public confidence through excellence in:
independent investigation of transport accidents and other safety occurrences;
safety data recording, analysis and research; and
fostering safety awareness, knowledge and action.
The Australian context
Australians travel vast distances by air, sea, rail and road.
Transport activity grows as the economy grows. All sectors rely on transport to move products and provide services.
But as transport activity increases, so does the risk of accidents and incidents.
The Australian, state, territory and local governments, industry and other stakeholders work collaboratively on transport safety.
The ATSB and transport safety
The ATSB contributes to transport safety by independently investigating, analysing and openly reporting on transport safety matters. All ATSB investigations are no blame – the emphasis is on learning to improve future safety.
Bureau publications include reports on the facts and conclusions of investigations, safety research material, and statistics. Reports often contain safety action and recommendations for authorities and other parties to action in the interests of safety improvements.
The ATSB is responsible for the independent investigation of accidents and incidents involving civil aircraft in Australia. All accidents and incidents related to flight safety in Australia or by Australian registered aircraft overseas must be reported to the ATSB. While the ATSB does not investigate all of these, it still needs to be notified so that the data can be recorded for possible future safety analysis.
Australia is a member of the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), which is made up of 190 states (countries), and has frequently assisted with international investigations, including through analysis of flight-recorder (black box) data.
Aviation security is designed to safeguard Australia’s civil aviation operations against “acts of unlawful interference”. Both the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government and the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government are responsible for the development and implementation of a national framework of consistent aviation security measures.
Airservices Australia provides the following services. You can visit their website at: www.airservicesaustralia.com
1. Air Traffic Management
Global leadership in safe and efficient air traffic management
Airservices Australia provides customers in Australia and around the world with solutions for safe, efficient, effective and environmentally sound airspace and airside systems and services.
Airservices Australia was one of the first Air Navigation Service Providers in the world to successfully implement a new fully-automated Air Traffic Management System. The Australian Advanced Air Traffic System (TAAATS) delivers world-leading safety and efficiency in air traffic control and navigation services. Airservices Australia now provides systems and operational expertise to assist other air traffic control providers implement and operate new Air Traffic Management (ATM) technologies.
Reliable, tested and integrated solutions for aircraft positioning, navigation, communication and traffic control including:
Upper and lower airspace management
Tower management and procedures design
Communication Navigation Surveillance (CNS)/ATM operational procedures and implementation
Environmental impact management services
Air Traffic Controller (ATC) training programs
Ground Based Augmentation System (GBAS) services including evaluation, procedures development, systems installation and flight testing
Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) design and implementation
Enhanced safety and operational benefits through effective implementation and management of ATM technology
Proven, international-standard frameworks and systems for safety assurance
Traffic management systems and procedures that optimise airport utilisation and airline operational performance
Operational procedures that deliver efficiency and cost control
Comprehensive, operational support services including documentation, procedures design and development, quality assurance, occupational health and safety and environmental management
ATC human resource management expertise that delivers a highly skilled, efficient, sustainable and safety focussed workforce
Customer partnering approach
Integrated airspace and airside consultancy and management services.
ATM technology implementation
We are a leader in the introduction of a number of new technologies and procedures for enhanced ATM safety and efficiency.
We have a number of programs designed to develop Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) as a cost-effective aircraft tracking alternative. ADS-B is an air traffic surveillance technology that enables aircraft to be accurately tracked by Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) and other pilots without the need for conventional radar.
We are also able to assist other service providers with ATC automation system (i.e. Eurocat) enhancements and the resolution of other operational issues associated with the introduction of ADS-B.
2. Airspace Design
Safe, effective and efficient airspace solutions
Airservices Australia’s airspace design and management services are based on a full investigation of current and future requirements of airlines and airports from the ground up and the application of sophisticated computer simulation for traffic modeling.
We provide airspace consultancy services to air navigation service providers, airline operators, military authorities and related industry organisations around the globe.
Airport capacity and flow modelling
Flexible air route design
Reduced Vertical Separation Minima (RVSM) procedures and training
Traffic flow management
GPS procedures design
a thorough understanding of international aviation regulations, standards and requirements
expertise in analysis and modelling of a full range of options for designing airspace classes, boundaries and characteristics
careful and comprehensive simulation and analysis of all options
innovative design solutions and implementation of appropriate technology and procedures
a partnership focussed on delivering safe, environmentally appropriate, commercial and operationally efficient outcomes.
Airservices is a driving force behind development of international aviation standards in relation to:
Global Positioning System (GPS) non-precision approaches
terminal area instrument procedures
lowest safe altitudes (LSALT) for published air routes
terminal area instrument procedures and LSALT determinations
instrument approach procedures to ICAO Pans Ops standards
management of the ICAO collision risk models
management of the Pans Ops CADD projects
advise on ICAO Pans Ops standards and procedures
liaison with industry in IAL, SID and STAR procedures.
Our teams are involved in:
evaluating airport plans and proposals
testing changes to airspace or air routes prior to implementation
assessing potential traffic capacity and flow problems
examining airport and sector capacity and delays as well as airborne conflicts
determining appropriate solutions including requirements for new gates, taxiways or runways
identifying potential cost savings.
3. Airways systems & facilities
Trusted advice, know-how and service
A world-leading provider of airspace and Air Traffic Management (ATM) services, Airservices Australia provides an airways systems and facilities implementation capability that is supported by:
more than 50 years operational ATM experience in all aviation environments,
exacting customer service standards,
advanced technology and practical operational ‘know-how’, and
an impeccable safety record.
Our experience in airspace and ATM services spans upper and lower level airspace management, tower air traffic management, aeronautical data, communications, navigation and surveillance systems. We deliver safe and efficient service solutions through integrated electrical, mechanical and IT systems and facilities management processes.
Air navigation services providers and airports around the world that have benefited from our expertise include the United Kingdom, United States, China, Sweden, Finland, Singapore, Korea, Mauritius, Vanuatu, East Timor, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, India and the Philippines.
Airways systems and facilities services:
Software and system design, development and management – including flight and operational data, situational awareness and surveillance systems including Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast and the Ground-Based Augmentation System , aeronautical information, weather and noise monitoring and flight planning and briefing.
ATM system integration and implementation and technical systems support – for Eurocat and other leading ATM systems.
Support to traditional navigation technology such as Instrument Landing Systems, Non Directional Beacons and VHR OmniRange.
Configuration, control and preventative and corrective equipment maintenance – for all aviation related systems including test equipment calibration and repair.
Turn key engineering project management
Tailored, integrated systems solutions
Independent assessment of system requirements and solutions
One-stop service for cost effective and efficient installation, maintenance and repair
Application of specialist system knowledge
Operational experience in a wide range of systems environments
4. Aeronautical Information & Management Services
With you all the way – reliable, trusted, and flexible aeronautical information services
Since 1924 Airservices Australia and its predecessors has provided comprehensive aeronautical information to meet the needs of the aviation industry and fulfill international aviation convention obligations (Annex 4 and 15). Our aeronautical information management team provides:
a comprehensive range of information products for commercial and private pilots to ensure the safety and efficiency of each and every flight.
a world class Aeronautical Information Service (AIS) ensuring nation states meet their obligations under the Chicago Convention in the most cost effective manner.
Accurate, reliable and flexible aeronautical information is a vital component of modern air navigation. Airservices’ aeronautical information services cover preparation, processing and handling of dynamic data (weather and other conditions that impact flight planning and operations) and static data (covering the location and character of navigation aids, the physical characteristics of airports and geography).
Flight information for commercial and private pilots that supports the safe and efficient conduct of flights:
Aeronautical Information Services to meet International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) requirements
Pre-flight, location and area briefing
Aeronautical Information Package (AIP), including amendments
Notice to Airmen (NOTAMs)
Aeronautical Information Circulars
Aeronautical documents for studying, maintenance, planning and flying
Standard and customised aeronautical charting (planning, terminal, visual navigation, en route)
Tailored airways manuals
Nav Data services
data and simulations of traffic scenarios in the air and on the ground
Procedures design – terminal area and Global Positioning System Non Precision arrivals procedures
Pilot supplies – logbooks, aviation computers and plotters, training materials, flight luggage, flight planning software and books
Printing and distribution services
– Commercial airlines and their pilots
A trusted source for all flight data and information
Flexible information that supports seamless flight operations
Customised information packaging and delivery that saves both time and money
Electronic delivery of data
– Private business and recreational pilots
High quality, easy to use charts and publications
Stylish and functional publications and accessories
Online store for easy ordering and Internet payment
Trusted source and comprehensive services
Commercial pressures for efficiency and cost control mean that airlines require information services tailored to their operations and environment. Airservices offers charting and navigation information services for all pilots including airway manuals, NavData and charts configured to meet a variety of uses.
Our comprehensive database and advance cartographic capabilities enable us to provide customised AIS and charting services that ensure you get and pay only for the information you need.
Procedures design services
Airservices Australia’s procedures-design specialists design and maintain the publication of instrument approaches and departure procedures for 300 aerodromes across Australia – including GPS Non-Precision approaches. This experience enables us to assist other aviation organisations to develop standards and procedures for safer, more efficient air navigation.
How Air Traffic Control works.
Air Traffic Control is used to manage the safe and orderly flow of aircraft into, out of, and across Australian airspace.
Airservices Australia uses world class systems and processes to minimise the risk of collisions, while allowing the maximum number of aircraft to fly safely in our skies. Many of our systems have been replicated across the world.
Air traffic controllers manage aircraft through all phases of flight. In Australian airspace, aircraft may be monitored and tracked from terminal gate to terminal gate: pre-departure through to landing.
Controllers at one of our 2 major centres direct planes around the sky, using radar and radio links to communicate with pilots.
Controllers at 26 major airports assist pilots in all other phases of flight, including take off and landing. While the process is most complex in large, busy airports, procedures vary according to the class of airspace an aircraft intends on entering.
Jet aircraft, and commercial flights often fly through different classes of airspace, where instrument flight rules exist and radar is actively used.
Small aircraft usually fly in uncontrolled airspace, where visual flight rules are used and pilots submit flight plans to alert Air Traffic Control about their route.
The many advances made in Air Traffic Control help us better manage the growing demand for aviation services and to reduce the environmental impact of flying.
Airspace classes used in Australia
Four of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) controlled airspace classes are used in Australia: A, C, D and E.
Uncontrolled Airspace (no separation service is provided by ATC ) is Class G.
Uses of each type of airspace:
Class A High level enroute airspace. Well suited for modern passenger jets.
Class C Surrounds major city airports starting at ground level.
Class D This airspace is often used at smaller regional airports.
The upper boundary of Class D is usually 4500 feet (1368 m).
Class E Australian Class E is mid-level enroute ‘controlled’ airspace.
Its base is at 8500 feet (2584 m) within enroute secondary
surveillance radar coverage.
Class G Uncontrolled airspace. Flight Information Service and Traffic Information
Types of Air Traffic Controllers
Airservices Australia employs 1000 air traffic controllers, who work from two major centres in Melbourne and Brisbane and 26 towers at international and regional airports.
The role of the controller depends on the phase of flight There are three main types of Air Traffic Controller.
Tower Controllers work in the control tower at an aerodrome. They are responsible for all aircraft and vehicle movements on taxiways, runways and the immediate vicinity of the airport. We operate 26 control towers around Australia.
Terminal Area Controllers:
Terminal Area Controllers use radar to manage the orderly flow of aircraft arriving and departing from major city airports. Terminal Area Control services are provided from the Brisbane and Melbourne Centres and Terminal Control Units in Cairns, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth.
Enroute Controllers are responsible for the safe management of air traffic over the majority of the Australian mainland and on oceanic routes. Enroute control services are delivered from our two major centres in Brisbane and Melbourne.
Phases of flight
In Australian airspace, aircraft are managed from terminal gate to terminal gate although the type of service (Separation, Flight Information and Traffic Information Service) varies depending on class of airspace.
Air Traffic Controllers have various responsibilities during each phase of a flight.
Constant contact between Air Traffic Control and the aircraft and its crew at important stages of a flight helps to ensure safe and efficient movement of aircraft around our airports and skies.
Responsibilities of Air Traffic Control:
Approach, descent and landing
Types of Flight
Just as there are rules of the road there are also rules for aircraft in the skies: Visual Flight Rules and Instrument Flight Rules.
The pilot chooses which to use, however for some types of airspace only aircraft flying on Instrument Flight Rules are allowed.
Some aircraft carry a minimum of instruments and equipment, such as ultralights. Others carry very advanced and sophisticated instrumentation, such as modern Boeing and Airbus passenger aircraft.
Visual Flight Rules: Visual Flight Rules (VFR) are important for aircraft with little or no instrumentation. The rules rely on good visibility, so pilots can see what is flying around them. Therefore, this type of flying is very weather dependent.
Instrument Flight Rules: Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) are used by jet aircraft, and most large commercial flights. Instrument flying uses sophisticated navigation equipment which allows the aircraft to fly in virtually all weather.
Class A airspace can only be flown by aircraft using Instrument Flight Rules.
For some types of airspace the type of service provided by ATC to aircraft flying on Instrument and Visual Flight Rules varies.
How Airpsace is Managed
In Australia, there are two major types of airspace: controlled, and uncontrolled. Controlled airspace is monitored and most traffic is directed, to varying extents, by ground-based Air Traffic Controllers.
The air routes are designated by ground based radio navigational aids. Although with the many advances in Air Traffic Control technologies such as ADS-B, traditional air routes are being replaced by Flextracks in the less busy controlled airspaces. Much of the Australian airspace below 18,000 feet (5472 m) outside the Eastern seaboard is classified as Uncontrolled Airspace. It is in this airspace where most recreational aircraft generally operate. In Uncontrolled airspace, pilots are often not visible to Air Traffic Control but must still follow Visual Flight Rules or Instrument Flight Rules.
As well as being broken into controlled or uncontrolled airspace, Australian airspace is further divided into different classes, where internationally agreed rules for visual flight and instrument flying apply.
In Uncontrolled airspace Air Traffic controllers do not provide separation but provide a Flight Information Service and Traffic Information Service to aircraft flying on Instrument Flight Rules and on request to aircraft flying on Visual Fight Rules.
Airservices Australia’s area of operations covers the Australian Flight Information Region which includes the nation’s sovereign airspace and international airspace over the surrounding oceans including the FIR’s of the Solomon Islands and Nauru.
Lower level airspace is also managed at six Pacific Ocean region airports for the US Federal Aviation Administration.
Airservices is responsible for the airspace stretching in latitude from two degrees to 90 degrees south; and in longitude from 75 degrees to 163 degrees east.
This is an area of 19,995,070 sq nautical miles (51,786,992 sq kms) – or some 11 percent of the world’s total airspace.
The corporation also provides air traffic and navigational services and associated aeronautical information required by both domestic and international aviation industries.
Airservices provides its services in accordance with Civil Aviation Safety Authority regulations. Its airspace role is carried out in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organization airspace classification system.
Australian airspace classification:
Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) – commercial and selected general aviation aircraft
Visual Flight Rules (VFR) – general aviation aircraft
Class A: IFR flights only are permitted. All flights are provided with an air traffic control service and are positively separated from each other.
Class C: All aircraft must get an airways clearance and communicate with air traffic control. IFR aircraft are positively separated from both IFR and VFR aircraft. VFR aircraft are provided traffic information on other VFR aircraft.
Class D: All aircraft must get an airways clearance and communicate with air traffic control. IFR aircraft are positively separated from other IFR aircraft and are provided with traffic information on all VFR aircraft. VFR aircraft are provided traffic information on all other aircraft.
Class E: IFR aircraft require an airways clearance and must communicate with air traffic control. IFR aircraft are positively separated from other IFR aircraft and given traffic information on known VFR aircraft. VFR aircraft do not require an airways clearance and are not required to communicate with air traffic control.
Class G: IFR and VFR flights are permitted and do not require an airways clearance. IFR flights must communicate with air traffic control and receive traffic information on other IFR flights and a flight information service. VFR flights receive a flight information service if requested.
The Australian aviation industry is continually striving to minimise the effects of aircraft noise on communities and many advances have been made in recent years. These have included the revision of flight path arrangements, introduction of curfews, phasing out of older, noisier aircraft, and the development of strict planning controls by many councils.
Flight Paths & Flight Zones
Ideally, aircraft fly by the most direct route and at the optimum altitude for reasons of economy and efficiency of flight operations. However, it is not always possible for aircraft to fly optimum routes because of noise and safety considerations and the competing demands of other airspace users.
What are Flight Paths and Flight Zones?
While flight paths are often depicted as single lines on a map, it is not possible for all aircraft following a particular flight path to fly precisely along the same line. In practice, flight paths tend to be corridors that can be a number of kilometres wide.
Whereas flight paths show where the aircraft fly most of the time, flight zones are also shown to describe in more general terms the airspace that may be used by aircraft operating to and from the airport.
The flight zones include all the flight paths and adjacent airspace which may be used by aircraft for safety and other operational reasons. At some times, aircraft will be seen and heard anywhere in the flight zone around an airport.
Aircraft operating at low altitudes creating the most noise are generally found within a radius of about 10 nautical miles (19km) from the aerodrome. For example, an aircraft preparing to land would be at an altitude of about 3000 feet (approximately 900 m) at 10 nautical miles from the runway threshold. Departing aircraft are usually higher than arriving aircraft at equal distances from the aerodrome.
Aircraft will, of course, also be seen and heard outside this 10 nautical mile radius.
What affects the Selection of Flight Paths?
Some of the factors that influence flight paths are:
* runway orientation
* the need to separate arriving and departing aircraft
* the need to provide an appropriate safety buffer around aircraft
* following the same path or on intersecting paths
* the need to integrate the flight paths for each airport in the region
* aircraft performance limitations, e.g., rate of turn, climb and descent rates
* avoidance of hills or other obstructions
* minimisation of noise impact where possible
* weather conditions
* avoidance of restricted airspace, (usually for security or safety reasons)
* efficient use of airspace.
The Effects of Weather on Aircraft Noise
Our Noise Enquiry Service receives many comments from callers who notice that aircraft noise is much worse on some days compared to others. Generally, the amount of noise emitted from a particular jet aircraft during landing, departure, or engine testing does not change from day to day. However, several factors may affect the sound level heard by callers at a given location. Noise propagation is a complex phenomenon that can be influenced by wind, temperature, cloud cover, fog, topography, or man made barriers such as homes or buildings.
Noise is essentially a sound wave distributed in equal directions away from the source. Generally, noise levels decrease as the distance increases between the source and the receiver. However, the direction in which the sound waves travel can be altered by weather conditions which may result in varying noise levels at the same location at different times.
Temperature inversions, which occur when the air temperature increases as altitude increases, causes sound waves to bend down towards the ground, which may increase the sound heard by a receiver.
Another factor, wind, generally causes sound waves to bend in the direction of its flow. For example a wind with an easterly component one day may well have a westerly component on the next day. When this occurs residents on either side of a flight path may hear changes in noise levels.
These differing weather conditions do not cover all possibilities but provide an indication of how weather may alter the propagation of sound waves. Wind and temperature conditions also have effects on the performance of aircraft which can cause changes in sound levels heard on the ground.
Environmental Policy – Airservices Australia
Using our environment policy as a guide, Airservices Australia aims to reduce the environmental impact of the services we provide to the aviation industry.
Aviation is a contributor of greenhouse emissions. The Department of Climate Change projects that emissions from domestic aviation will remain at around 7% of total emissions over the next ten years.
As popularity of air travel remains and continues to grow, we want to support the aviation industry in creating an environmentally sustainable future.
A number of projects have already been implemented to help reduce the aviation industry’s environmental impact:
Predicting and managing aircraft delays
Continuous descent approaches
Green approaches (includes the Brisbane green project)
Computer simulation of aviation emissions
Gate to gate airspace management
We are also committed to reducing our own corporate footprint. Following an environmental audit, we implemented an internal E-Change program to help in the following areas:
Minimising consumption of electricity, water, paper, fuel and other resources.
Offsetting essential emissions-producing activities through a Greenfleet subscription.
Monitoring and reporting the usage of energy, water, paper, and waste production and CO2 emissions.
Creating a more environmentally aware and committed culture across the organisation.