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Volume 3  GENERAL TECHNICAL ADMINISTRATION

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chapter 26  AVIATION WEATHER REGULATORY REQUIREMENTS

Section 6  Notices to Airmen

3-2155    GENERAL. Notices to Airmen (NOTAM) is the means of communicating aeronautical information (AI) regarding temporary or unanticipated changes to components or hazards in aviation. NOTAMs remain in effect until the hazard has been corrected or the appropriate charts are amended to reflect the change. The facility that initiated the NOTAM will generally submit the NOTAM for publishing 90 days after its initial posting. Certificate holders must provide NOTAMs to flightcrews, dispatchers, and operational control personnel for domestic and international operations in airspace covered by NOTAM systems. Legacy U.S. NOTAMs may be edited into final form (without changing the content) by the United States NOTAM Office (USNOF) and distributed through the U.S. NOTAM System (USNS). Digital NOTAMs automatically enter the USNS through the Federal NOTAM System (FNS). As of November 2013, 190 airports are using FNS, as are the Technical Operation Command Centers (OCCs), and several Tower Light Operators.

3-2156    SCOPE. The information contained in this section applies to principal operations inspectors (POI) and aviation safety inspectors (ASI) with oversight responsibility of certificate holders and program managers who conduct operations in accordance with Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) parts 91, 91 subpart K (91K), 121, 125, and 135.

3-2157    BACKGROUND. The NOTAM system has been undergoing revision and evolution for years. The local NOTAMs are no longer classified as such and are distributed under the distant or D NOTAM format. Additionally, the USNS is evolving and will eventually be replaced with the FNS, which allows for direct user input. The FNS is designed to digitize the collection, dissemination, and storage of NOTAMs. The FNS is intended to become the single authoritative source for NOTAM entry and dissemination to improve the efficiency, safety, and data quality of NOTAM information.

3-2158    CLASSIFICATION OF NOTAMS. The classifications of NOTAMs currently in existence are listed below, and are described in greater detail later in this section:

·    NOTAM D (for Distant distribution);

·    FDC (flight data center);

·    Pointer NOTAMs;

·    Special Activity Airspace; and

·    Military NOTAMs.

NOTE:  Airspace Notices are located in the Notices To Airmen Publication NTAP, guidance is located in 3-2158 B, 1.

NOTE:  Refer to the current edition of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Order JO 7930.2, Notices to Airmen (NOTAM), the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), Chapter 5, and Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) System for additional information on the various types of NOTAMS.

A.    NOTAM D. A notice distributed by means of telecommunications containing information concerning the establishment, condition, or change in any aeronautical facility, service, procedure, or hazard, the timely knowledge of which is essential to personnel concerned with flight operations. NOTAM D is classified by keywords which aid in the sorting and usability of the NOTAMs. The keywords used are:

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·    RWY (Runway);

·    TWY (Taxiway);

·    APRON (Apron/Ramp);

·    AD (Aerodrome);

·    OBST (Obstructions);

·    NAV (Navigation Aids);

·    COM (Communications);

·    SVC (Services);

·    AIRSPACE (Airspace);

·    ODP (Obstacle Departure Procedures);

·    SID (Standard Instrument Departure);

·    STAR (Standard Terminal Arrival Route);

·    CHART (Chart);

·    DATA (Data);

·    IAP (Instrument Approach Procedure);

·    VFP (Visual Flight Procedure);

·    ROUTE (Route); and

·    SPECIAL (Special).

B.    FDC NOTAMS. FDC NOTAMs are normally used to disseminate safety of flight information relating to regulatory material as well as to all Instrument Flight Procedures (IFP). FDC NOTAM categories include interim instrument flight rules (IFR) flight procedures, temporary flight restrictions (TFR), flight restrictions in the proximity of the President and other parties, 14 CFR part 139 certificated airport condition changes, snow conditions affecting glide slope operation, air defense emergencies, emergency flight rules, substitute airway routes, special data, U.S. Government charting corrections, and Laser activity (refer to FAA Order JO 7930.2). These NOTAMs are issued through the USNOF. FDC NOTAMs that are of a permanent nature are printed and distributed via the Notices to Airmen Publication (NTAP), issued every 28 days. The NTAP is available digitally via the internet at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/notices/.

1)    NTAP. The NTAP is divided into four parts:
a)    Part one notices are provided by air traffic control (ATC) products and publications. This part contains selected FDC NOTAMs that are expected to be in effect on the effective date of the publication. This part is divided into three sections:

1.    Section 1–Airway NOTAMs. NOTAMs that reflect airway changes falling within an air route traffic control center’s (ARTCC) airspace.

2.    Section 2–Procedural NOTAMs. NOTAMs that impact Instrument Procedures.

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3.    Section 3–General NOTAMs. NOTAMs that are general in nature and not tied to a specific airport/facility (i.e., flight advisories and restrictions, open duration Special Security Instructions, and Special Flight Rules Area (SFRA)).

b)    Part two notices are provided by NFDC and contain 14 CFR part 95 revisions, revisions to minimum en route IFR altitudes (MEA), and Changeover Points.
c)    Part three, International NOTAMs, is divided into two sections:

1.    Section 1–Flight Prohibitions, Potential Hostile Situations, and Foreign Notices.

2.    Section 2–International Oceanic Airspace Notices.

d)    Part four, Graphic Notices, compiled by ATC products and publications from data provided by FAA service area offices and other lines of business, contains special notices and graphics pertaining to almost every aspect of aviation, such as military training areas, large scale sporting events, air show information, Special Traffic Management Programs (STMPs), and airport−specific information. This part is comprised of 6 sections including Special Military Operations, Airport and Facility Notices, Major Sporting and Entertainment Events, Airshows, and Special Notices.

NOTE:  Refer to the current edition of FAA Advisory Circular (AC) 91-63, Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs/TFR), for specific guidance on all TFR.

2)    Global Positioning System (GPS) Interference Testing. All GPS interference testing NOTAMs will be reported to the USNOF by the Technical Operations ATC Spectrum Engineering Services, Spectrum Assignment and Engineering Services. The USNOF will format NOTAMs under the accountability “GPS” with an affected location of the associated center: https://pilotweb.nas.faa.gov/PilotWeb/noticesAction.do?queryType=ALLGPS&formatType=DOMESTIC.

C.    Pointer NOTAMs. These NOTAMs are used to highlight or point out another NOTAM such an FDC, TFR, or an airspace Notice that has been published.

D.    Special Activity Airspace NOTAMs. These NOTAMs are issued when Special Activity Airspace will be active outside the published schedule times and when required by the published schedule. Pilots and other users are still responsible to check published schedule times for Special Activity Airspace as well as any NOTAMs for that airspace.

E.    Military NOTAMs. These are NOTAMs pertaining to U.S. Military airports and can be accessed online via the Defense Internet NOTAM Service (DINS) at https://www.notams.faa.gov/dinsQueryWeb/. Military NOTAMs are also available through the USNS, and can be accessed via Pilot Web at https://pilotweb.nas.faa.gov/PilotWeb/.

F.    Other Information. NOTAMs may also include OTHER AI that may be beneficial to an operator classified with an “O,” or UNVERIFIED information that may be time sensitive and classified with a “U.”

G.    Operations Not Covered by NOTAMs. Operators may need to establish procedures or systems to develop or disseminate flight safety information concerning areas not covered by domestic or international NOTAMs, such as isolated airports or offshore operations.

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3-2159    INTERNATIONAL NOTAMS. The means for transmission of international NOTAMs differs from that used for domestic NOTAMs. International NOTAMs are transmitted electronically to those operators who have arranged to receive them, and they are available, on a request reply basis, for those offices with aeronautical fix telecommunications network (AFTN) circuits. International NOTAMs are available via Pilot Web at https://pilotweb.nas.faa.gov/PilotWeb/.

3-2160    NOTAM DISTRIBUTION. NOTAMs originate at the facility generating the information (e.g. an airport).

A.    Interface. There is a Web-based interface between the originating facility and the FNS. The originating facility may also utilize the Flight Service Station (FSS) to file the NOTAM. When a NOTAM is generated, it is entered into the USNS database. For example, if it is entered electronically via the Web interface it will be hosted in the FNS. If the NOTAM is entered via Flight Service or the USNOF, it will be hosted in the legacy USNS. If the NOTAM is entered for a U.S. Military facility, it will be hosted in the DINS. See Figure 3-111, NOTAM Distribution System, for a diagram of the distribution system.

B.    NOTAM Distribution System. Figure 3-111 depicts how a NOTAM enters the system and gets distributed to certificate holders, pilots, dispatchers, and other operational personnel.

C.    Operations Specification (OpSpec)/Management Specification (MSpec)/Letter of Authorization (LOA) A009. OpSpec /MSpec/LOA A009, Airport Aeronautical Data; MSpec A009, Aeronautical Data, is the means whereby a POI will approve (part 121) or authorize (91K, 125, and 135) an operator to use a system to disseminate NOTAM information. Prior to issuing approval or authorization, POIs must ensure that each operator evaluates the system for accuracy and completeness of the NOTAM information provided. See Volume 3, Chapter 18, Section 3 for information specific to OpSpec/MSpec/LOA A009. A NOTAM dissemination system may be part of an operator’s aviation weather information system (See Volume 3, Chapter 26, Section 2). When NOTAMs are disseminated through an aviation weather information system, POIs must still use OpSpec A009 as the vehicle for approval/authorization.

D.    Manual Requirements. POIs must ensure that operators include policies and procedures related to acquisition, dissemination, and cancellation of NOTAM information. Procedures should address each NOTAM source, and the method whereby the operator ensures the required NOTAM information is available and disseminated to pilots, dispatchers, and other operational personnel.

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Figure 3-111. NOTAM Distribution System

Figure 3-111. NOTAM Distribution System

RESERVED. 3-2161 through 3-2165.