Section 4. Route Assignment
4-4-1. ROUTE USE
Clear aircraft via routes consistent with the altitude
stratum in which the operation is to be conducted by
one or more of the following:
Except for certain NAVAIDs/routes used by scheduled air
carriers or authorized for specific uses in the control of IFR
aircraft, Air Traffic Service (ATS) routes, and NAVAIDs
established for use at specified altitudes are shown on
U.S. government charts or DOD FLIP charts.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 2-5-2, NAVAID Terms.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 4-1-2, Exceptions.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 4-5-6, Minimum En Route Altitudes.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 5-6-1, Application.
a. Designated ATS routes.
VICTOR (color) (airway number)(the word Romeo when
RNAV for existing Alaska routes),
J (route number) (the word Romeo when RNAV for existing
SUBSTITUTE (ATS route) FROM (fix) to (fix),
IR (route number).
CROSS/JOIN VICTOR/(color) (airway number), (number
of miles) MILES (direction) OF (fix).
b. Radials, courses, azimuths, or direct to or from
(name of NAVAID) (specified) RADIAL/COURSE/AZIMUTH,
(fix) AND (fix),
RADIALS OF (ATS route) AND (ATS route).
c. DME arcs of VORTAC, MLS, or TACAN aids.
d. Radials, courses, azimuths, and headings of
departure or arrival routes.
g. Fixes defined in terms of degree-distance from
NAVAIDs for special military operations.
h. Courses, azimuths, bearings, quadrants, or
radials within a radius of a NAVAID.
CLEARED TO FLY (general direction from NAVAID) OF
(NAVAID name and type) BETWEEN (specified)
COURSES TO/BEARINGS FROM/RADIALS (NAVAID
name when a NDB) WITHIN (number of miles) MILE
CLEARED TO FLY (specified) QUADRANT OF (NAVAID
name and type) WITHIN (number of miles) MILE RADIUS.
CLEARED TO FLY (general direction from MLS) OF
(name or MLS) BETWEEN (specified) AZIMUTHS
WITHIN/BETWEEN (number of miles) MILE RADIUS.
1. “Cleared to fly east of Allentown VORTAC between the
zero four five and the one three five radials within four zero
2. “Cleared to fly east of Crystal Lake radio beacon
between the two two five and the three one five courses to
Crystal Lake within three zero mile radius.”
3. “Cleared to fly northeast quadrant of Philipsburg
VORTAC within four zero mile radius.”
“Cleared to fly east of the Montgomery M-L-S runway two
eight left between the two seven zero and the two four zero
azimuth within a 5 mile radius.”
i. Fixes/waypoints defined in terms of:
1. Published name; or
2. Degree-distance from NAVAIDs; or
3. Latitude/longitude coordinates, state the
latitude and longitude in degrees and minutes
including the direction from the axis such as North or
“32 DEGREES, 45 MINUTES NORTH,
105 DEGREES, 37 MINUTES WEST.”
4. Offset from published or established ATS
route at a specified distance and direction for random
(impromptu) RNAV Routes.
DIRECT TO THE (facility) (radial) (distance) FIX.
OFFSET(distance) RIGHT/LEFT OF (route).
“Direct to the Appleton three one zero radial two five mile
“Offset eight miles right of Victor six.”
j. RNAV aircraft transitioning to/from High
Altitude Redesign (HAR) or Point-to-point (PTP)
operations via pitch/catch points.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 2-3-8, Aircraft Equipment Suffix.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 2-5-3, NAVAID Fixes.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Chapter 5, Section
5, Radar Separation,
Para 5-5-1, Application.
4-4-2. ROUTE STRUCTURE TRANSITIONS
To effect transition within or between route structure,
clear an aircraft by one or more of the following
methods, based on VOR, VORTAC, TACAN, or
MLS NAVAIDs (unless use of other NAVAIDs are
essential to aircraft operation or ATC efficiency):
a. Vector aircraft to or from radials, courses, or
azimuths of the ATS route assigned.
b. Assign a SID/STAR/FMSP.
c. Clear departing or arriving aircraft to climb or
descend via radials, courses, or azimuths of the ATS
d. Clear departing or arriving aircraft directly to or
between the NAVAIDs forming the ATS route
e. Clear aircraft to climb or descend via the ATS
route on which flight will be conducted.
f. Clear aircraft to climb or descend on specified
radials, courses, or azimuths of NAVAIDs.
g. Provide radar monitor when transition to or
from a designated or established RNAV route is made
along random RNAV routes.
EXCEPTION. Radar monitoring is not required for
aircraft equipped with IFR-certified GPS systems
operating on point-to-point RNAV routes within
Anchorage Air Route Traffic Control Center
controlled airspace (excluding oceanic airspace)
where ATC surveillance coverage is not available.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 6-5-4, Minima Along Other Than Established
Airways or Routes
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 4-1-2, Exceptions
h. Clear RNAV aircraft transitioning to or between
designated or established RNAV routes direct to a
named waypoint on the new route.
4-4-3. DEGREE-DISTANCE ROUTE
DEFINITION FOR MILITARY OPERATIONS
a. Do not accept a military flight plan whose route
or route segments do not coincide with designated
airways or jet routes or with a direct course between
NAVAIDs unless it is authorized in subpara b and
meets the following degree-distance route definition
and procedural requirements:
1. The route or route segments must be defined
in the flight plan by degree-distance fixes composed
(a) A location identifier;
(b) Azimuth in degrees magnetic; and
(c) Distance in miles from the NAVAID used.
2. The NAVAIDs selected to define the
degree-distance fixes must be those authorized for
use at the altitude being flown and at a distance within
the published service volume area.
3. The distance between the fixes used to define
the route must not exceed:
(a) Below FL 180- 80 miles;
(b) FL 180 and above- 260 miles; and
(c) For celestial navigation routes, all
altitudes- 260 miles.
4. Degree-distance fixes used to define a route
must be considered compulsory reporting points
except that an aircraft may be authorized by ATC to
omit reports when traffic conditions permit.
5. Military aircraft using degree-distance route
definition procedures must conduct operations in
accordance with the following:
(a) Unless prior coordination has been
effected with the appropriate air traffic control
facility, flight plan the departure and the arrival
phases to conform with the routine flow of traffic
when operating within 75 miles of the departure and
the arrival airport. Use defined routes or airways or
direct courses between NAVAIDs or as otherwise
required to conform to the normal flow of traffic.
(b) Flight plans must be filed at least 2 hours
before the estimated time of departure.
b. The following special military operations are
authorized to define routes, or portions of routes, by
1. Airborne radar navigation, radar bomb
scoring (RBS), and airborne missile programming
conducted by the USAF, USN, and RAF.
2. Celestial navigation conducted by the USAF,
USN, and RAF.
3. Target aircraft operating in conjunction with
air defense interceptors, and air defense interceptors
while en route to and from assigned airspace.
4. Missions conducted above FL 450.
5. USN fighter and attack aircraft operating in
positive control airspace.
6. USN/USMC aircraft, TACAN equipped,
operating within the Honolulu FIR/Hawaiian airways
7. USAF/USN/USMC aircraft flight planned to
operate on MTRs.
8. USAF Air Mobility Command (AMC)
aircraft operating on approved station-keeping
equipment (SKE) routes in accordance with the
conditions and limitations listed in FAA Exemption
No. 4371 to 14 CFR Section 91.177(a)(2) and
14 CFR Section 91.179(b)(1).
4-4-4. ALTERNATIVE ROUTES
When any part of an airway or route is unusable
because of NAVAID status, clear aircraft other than
/E, /F, /G, or /R, via one of the following alternative
a. A route depicted on current U.S. Government
charts/publications. Use the word “substitute”
immediately preceding the alternative route in
issuing the clearance.
b. A route defined by specifying NAVAID radials,
courses, or azimuths.
c. A route defined as direct to or between
Inform area navigation aircraft that will proceed to the
NAVAID location of the NAVAID outage.
4-4-5. CLASS G AIRSPACE
Include routes through Class G airspace only when
requested by the pilot.
1. Flight plans filed for random RNAV routes through
Class G airspace are considered a request by the pilot.
2. Flight plans containing MTR segments in/through
Class G airspace are considered a request by the pilot.
4-4-6. DIRECT CLEARANCES
Unless operational necessity dictates, do not
issue a routing clearance that will take an aircraft off
of its flight plan route if:
1. The aircraft is part of a known traffic
2. The part of the route under consideration
for the direct routing is within a protected
segment. If a flight routing within a protected
segment is amended, coordination must be
accomplished as follows:
(a) ATCS: with TMU.
(b) Terminal facility TMU: with overlying
(c) ARTCC TMU (for amendments outside
their facility): with ATCSCC.
b. EN ROUTE. Do not issue revised routing
clearances that will take an aircraft off its flight plan
route past the last fix in your facility's airspace, unless
requested by the pilot or operational necessity
Nothing in this paragraph must preclude a controller from
issuing a routing clearance that conforms to a letter of
agreement or standard operating procedure within their
own facility or between facilities, is required to maintain
separation or comply with traffic flow management