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Steven Villanueva,
Flight Service

The mission of Flight Service is to:

  • Provide world class service and value to users of the National Airspace System (NAS), including new entrants
  • Leverage advanced technologies to safely and efficiently deliver flight services in the contiguous United States (CONUS), Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and Alaska
  • Support the ATO's System Operations Services with innovative, collaborative solutions to complex operational problems

What We Do

We oversee the administration of flight services in Alaska (provided exclusively by government personnel) and the CONUS, Puerto Rico and Hawaii (delivered by a contract service provider). Flight Service manages the vendor contracts, costs, and customer satisfaction within the NAS.

Flight Service Stations (FSS) are air traffic facilities that communicate directly with pilots to conduct preflight briefings, flight plan processing, inflight advisory services, search and rescue initiation, and assistance to aircraft in emergencies. FSS also relay Air Traffic Control clearances, process Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) and provide updates on aviation meteorological and aeronautical information.

Direct User Access Terminal Service (DUATS II) web portal providers, CSRA and Leidos, enable pilots to receive online preflight briefings, file flight plans and get automatic notifications and alerts. Registering for these automatic notifications and alerts keeps pilots informed when new or adverse conditions arise, such as a severe weather forecast or observation, an airport closure, NOTAM or temporary flight restriction.

Within the Flight Service Directorate, the U.S. NOTAM Office (USNOF) provides policy and guidance to maintain data integrity and ensure timely dissemination of NOTAMs. The USNOF formats and distributes information regarding the establishment, condition or change in any aeronautical facility, unanticipated or temporary changes to services, procedures, or hazards in the NAS.

Flight Service is Moving Forward

Flight Service encourages innovation in the delivery of services to pilots. User preferences for automation and new distribution methods make communication with pilots easier and faster. We provide continuous assessment of flight services based on feedback to enhance efficiency and add value for the pilot. The goal is to increase aviation safety by making weather and aeronautical information accessible where and when you need it.

As part of the Administrator's Strategic Initiative that lays the foundation for the NAS of the future, the Flight Service NAS Efficient Streamlined Services (FSNESS) sub-initiative is a multi-year, phased transition plan that will:

  • Use technological advances to deliver efficient and affordable flight services
  • Eliminate or reduce services that are redundant or obsolete, or do not support end-state core safety functions
  • Use NextGen initiatives and vendor alternatives to streamline services
  • Re-scope and negotiate contracts to support the appropriate service levels
  • Engage stakeholders throughout the process to convey the vision for Future Flight Service Programs
  • Modify proposed flight service changes based on stakeholder feedback and input

Additional Information

Guiding Principles

  • Safety as the Highest Priority
  • Foster Web-based Services and Automation
  • Strengthen FAA-Pilot Relationships
  • Improve the User Experience
  • Technological Innovation and Leadership
  • Fiscal Responsibility and Efficiency