Section 6. Aeronautical
An aeronautical study is conducted to identify the
impact of the SUA proposal on the safe and efficient use
of airspace and ATC procedures.
a. An aeronautical study is required for all
prohibited area, restricted area, MOA, and warning area
proposals, except those which reduce or revoke SUA,
change the controlling or using agency, or make minor
corrections to the legal description. The service area
office determines whether to require an aeronautical
study for alert area or CFA proposals.
b. The service area office must task affected FAA
ATC facilities to conduct, or provide input to the
aeronautical study. When applicable, coordinate with
adjacent regional/service area offices for additional
input. FAA ATC facilities must submit the completed
study to the service area office. When input to the
study from a military ATC facility is needed, the
service area office must submit a request to the
appropriate regional military representative.
c. For temporary airspace actions that are
recurring, such as periodic military exercises, a
previous study may be used provided it has been reviewed
for currency and updated as necessary.
d. The service area office will review the study
to determine if there are any aeronautical impacts to be
considered or resolved. The service area office will
supplement the study as needed to
include regional/service area office perspective,
cumulative effect analysis, etc. Coordinate the study
findings with the proponent to explore possible options
to reduce aeronautical impact.
e. A copy of the study must be included with the SUA
proposal package submitted to FAA Headquarters.
21-6-3. CONTENT OF STUDY
The service area office may specify the content and
format of the study based on the type and extent of the SUA
proposal. Suggested items include:
a. Introduction. An overview of the existing
airspace structure, airports, and types and volume of
aeronautical activities currently operating in the
airspace affected by the proposal.
b. Impact on IFR and VFR Terminal Operations.
Consider the proposal's impact on existing and proposed
1. Arrival and departure flows, STARs, and
2. Standard instrument approach procedures.
3. Airport traffic patterns, Class D, and Class E
airspace surface areas.
c. Impact on public use and charted private
airports (airports with FAA Form 5010 on file).
1. Number and types of aircraft based.
2. Amount of operations.
3. The proposal's affects on airport access,
capacity, and operations.
d. Impact on IFR En Route Operations.
1. Overall effect on IFR traffic flow.
2. Existing airway/Jet Route structure/GPS
3. Average daily traffic count on affected
4. Feasibility of airway/route realignment to
accommodate the proposed SUA.
5. Direct IFR routings.
e. Impact on VFR Operations, Routes, and Flyways.
Consider the effect on VFR operations, charted routes
and known, but uncharted, high-volume routes or flyways.
Although VFR pilots are not denied access to MOAs, the
potential for aeronautical impact due to VFR pilots
electing to deviate around the MOA when active should be
evaluated when processing a MOA proposal. Consider the
proposed MOA's size and location, and the extent of
current non-participating VFR operations in the affected
f. Impact on other pending
proposals. Consider known airport development plans,
resectorization, other airspace or airway/route
proposals, or instrument procedures, currently being
processed or on file.
g. Cumulative Aeronautical Impact Assessment.
Establishment of the proposed airspace may have broader
effects beyond the immediate vicinity of the proposed
airspace. Consider the overall impact of the proposal on
aviation operations when combined with:
1. Existing adjacent airspace such as Class B
or C areas, or other SUA.
2. Existing geographical features such as
large bodies of water, mountainous terrain, or
obstructions that could influence the flight paths of
nonparticipating aircraft or affect the availability
of nonparticipating aircraft to circumnavigate the
3. Aviation safety issues, compression of air
If the proposed SUA will contain aircraft operations,
also consider the impact of routes to be used by the
participating aircraft to enter/exit the SUA area.
h. Associated ATCAA. If it is known that an ATCAA
will be requested in conjunction with the proposed SUA,
determine if use of the ATCAA would result in any
additional aeronautical impact that should be
i. Alternatives. When adverse aeronautical
impacts are identified consider measures or alternatives
that could mitigate or lessen the impact.
j. ATC Facility Assessment. The ATC facility's
assessment of a proposal's impact on aeronautical and
facility operations, and the facility's concurrence or
nonconcurrence with the proposal.
k. ATC services. Indicate whether the controlling
agency plans to provide real-time SUA status
information, allow transitions through the area by
nonparticipating aircraft, or provide traffic advisories
to nonparticipating pilots requesting such services. If
the controlling agency agrees to advertise such service,
provide facility identification and a VHF frequency to
be depicted on aeronautical charts.
l. Recommendations. Provide a recommendation for
FAA action on the proposal.