Flights in oceanic airspace must be conducted under Instrument Flight Rule (IFR) procedures when operating:
- Between sunset and sunrise.
- At or above Flight Level (FL) 055 when operating within the New York, Oakland, and Anchorage Oceanic Flight Information Regions (s).
- Above FL180 when operating within the Miami and Houston s and in the San Juan Control Area. Flights between the east coast of the U.S., and Bermuda or Caribbean terminals, and traversing the New York at or above 5,500 feel MSL should be especially aware of this requirement.
- At or above FL230 when operating within the Anchorage Arctic .
San Juan /FIR VFR Traffic.
- All VFR aircraft entering and departing the San Juan / will provide San Juan Radio with an flight plan. All aircraft must establish two-way communications with San Juan Radio on 126.7, 122.2, 123.65, or 255.4.
- Communication can also be established by transmitting on 122.1 and receive using the appropriate VOR frequency for Borinquen (BQN), Mayaguez (MAZ), Ponce (PSE), and St. Croix (COY). For St. Thomas (STT), transmit on 123.6 and receive on the VOR frequency. If unable to contact San Juan Radio, the pilot is responsible for notifying adjacent ATS units and request that a position report be relayed to San Juan Radio for search and rescue purposes and flight following.
Non-RVSM aircraft are not permitted in RVSM airspace unless they meet the criteria of excepted aircraft and are previously approved by the ATS unit having authority for the airspace. In addition to those aircraft listed in ENR 1.1, General Rules, paragraph 38, Operational Policy/Procedures for Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM) in the Domestic U.S., Alaska, Offshore Airspace, and the San Juan , the following aircraft operating within oceanic and offshore airspace are excepted:
- Aircraft being initially delivered to the State of Registry or Operator.
- Aircraft that was formerly RVSM-approved but has experienced an equipment failure and is being flown to a maintenance facility for repair in order to meet RVSM requirements and/or obtain approval.
Aircraft being utilized for mercy or humanitarian purposes.
These exceptions are accommodated on a workload or traffic-permitting basis.
- Flights in oceanic airspace must be conducted under Instrument Flight Rule (IFR) procedures when operating:
Flight Plan Filing Requirements
In addition to the following guidance, operators must also consult current Notices to Air Missions (s) and chart supplements (Supplement Alaska, Supplement Pacific) to gain a complete understanding of requirements. s and supplements may contain guidance that is short term and/or short notice - i.e., having immediate effect.
- If you are eligible for oceanic 50 NM lateral separation:
If you are eligible for oceanic 50 NM longitudinal and lateral separation:
- /A1 or /L1 in Field 18.
- P2 in Field 10a.
- D1 in Field 10b.
- (J5, J6, or J7) and R in Field 10a.
- SUR/RSP180 in Field 18.
- See FAA Advisory Circular 90-117, Data Link Communications, for guidance on Required Communication Performance (RCP) and Required Surveillance Performance (RSP) authorization.
- See FAA Advisory Circular 90-105 for guidance on RNP 10 ( 10) authorization.
- If you are eligible for 23 NM lateral or 30 NM longitudinal separation:
- In accordance with Doc 4444, flight plans with routes entering the Oakland Oceanic (KZAK) must contain, among the estimated elapsed times (EET) in Field 18, an entry point for KZAK and an estimated time. It is not mandatory to file the boundary crossing point in Field 15 of the route of flight, but it is permitted.
- The use of and in the Oakland Oceanic (KZAK) is only permitted by Inmarsat and Iridium customers. All other forms of data link connectivity are not authorized. Users must ensure that the proper data link code is filed in Item 10a of the ICAO FPL in order to indicate which satellite medium(s) the aircraft is equipped with. The identifier for Inmarsat is J5 and the identifier for Iridium is J7. If J5 or J7 is not included in the ICAO FPL, then the LOGON will be rejected by KZAK and the aircraft will not be able to connect.
New York Oceanic
- The use of and in the New York Oceanic (KZWY) is only permitted by Inmarsat and Iridium customers. All other forms of data link connectivity are not authorized. Users must ensure that the proper data link code is filed in Item 10a of the ICAO FPL in order to indicate which satellite medium(s) the aircraft is equipped with. The identifier for Inmarsat is J5 and the identifier for Iridium is J7. If J5 or J7 is not included in the ICAO FPL, then the LOGON will be rejected by KZWY and the aircraft will not be able to connect.
Flight Plan Addressing
In an effort to eliminate erroneous or duplicate flight plans that may be received from diverse locations, and to increase the safety of flight, operators must adhere to the following procedures when filing flight plans for departing flights from foreign aerodromes entering the United States National Airspace System:
- If the filer sends an FPL to an FAA En Route facility in addition to the air traffic service unit (ATSU) responsible for the departure aerodrome, the filer must ensure that the flight plan filed is the same as the flight plan entered by the ATS unit having authority for the departure aerodrome. Note that per Doc. 4444, an operator may request that movement messages distributed by the responsible ATS unit be routed to the operator.
- Changes to IFR flight plans must be submitted as soon as possible, but no more than 24 hours prior to the flight, to ensure proper processing and distribution before departure.
- The FAA expects changes to be transmitted using the DLA and CHG messages as outlined in Doc. 4444. Transmitting changes to the FAA by canceling (CNL) and refiling an FPL creates the potential for multiple FPLs in the computer system.
- If Cancel and Refile is used, it is imperative that the cancellation of the original FPL in the FAA system be verified by computer response or verbal coordination before submitting another FPL.
Changes to an IFR flight plan less than 30 minutes prior to departure must be accomplished via verbal coordination with the ATSU having authority for the departure aerodrome.
These references are contained in ICAO DOC 4444 and FAA Order JO 7210.3, Facility Operation and Administration. Operators should be aware that failure to adhere to these procedures could result in an operational delay or pilot deviation.
- Oakland Oceanic
- All flights entering the New York Oceanic / must address flight plans to KZWYZOZX.
All flights entering the New York Oceanic / and a U.S. (except Boston) and/or Bermuda airspace must address flight plans to both KZWYZOZX and the appropriate U.S. . (See TBL ENR 7.1-1).
Airspace to be Entered: New York Oceanic CTA/FIR and U.S. ARTCCs
New York (NY) Oceanic CTA/FIR
Boston ARTCC & NY Oceanic
NY domestic and/or Bermuda & NY Oceanic
KZNYZQZX & KZWYZOZX
Washington (KZDC) & NY Oceanic
KZDCZQZX & KZWYZOZX
Jacksonville (KZJX) & NY Oceanic
KZJXZQZX & KZWYZOZX
Miami (KZMA) & NY Oceanic
KZMAZQZX & KZWYZOZX
San Juan & NY Oceanic
TZSUZQZX & KZWYZOZX
- Anchorage Oceanic s
San Juan /
- All aircraft transitioning through San Juan / from a foreign facility that will operate in North Atlantic (NAT) High Level Airspace (HLA) must forward the full route of flight for flight plan verification.
This must be accomplished prior to exiting the San Juan / by one of the following means:
- Via Direct pilot-controller communication; or
- Via New York Radio, when requested by ATC.
- In an effort to eliminate erroneous or duplicate flight plans that may be received from diverse locations, and to increase the safety of flight, operators must adhere to the following procedures when filing flight plans for departing flights from foreign aerodromes entering the United States National Airspace System:
Beacon Code Requirements
- Oakland Oceanic . Upon entering the Oakland Oceanic and after radar service is terminated; all aircraft should adjust their transponder to display code 2000 on their display. Aircraft should maintain code 2000 thereafter until otherwise directed by Air Traffic Control.
New York Oceanic
- New York - East Oceanic . All aircraft should squawk code 2000 30 minutes after entry.
- New York - West Oceanic .
- Anchorage Oceanic . aircraft crossing the Anchorage/Oakland boundary westbound between 150W and 160W must contact San Francisco Radio by 140W to receive a discrete beacon code for use in Anchorage airspace.
- Houston Oceanic . All aircraft entering the Houston Oceanic / should remain on the last assigned code.
- There is no primary radar or weather returns available from the Grand Turk, Georgetown, and Nassau radar systems. Since radar separation is dependent upon the receipt of transponder returns, all aircraft within antenna coverage of either system are required to squawk transponder codes as assigned by ATC, or, if none assigned, squawk the appropriate stratum code.
- Aircraft departing and overflying the Santo Domingo and Port Au Prince s can expect ATC assigned codes from those ATS providers. If a code is not assigned by either Santo Domingo or Port Au Prince, pilots should request a code. The assigned code should be squawked prior to entering the Miami /.
Position Reporting in the Oceanic Environment
- Pilots must report over each point used in the flight plan to define the route of flight, even if the point is depicted on aeronautical charts as an “on request" (non-compulsory) reporting point. For aircraft providing automatic position reporting via an Automatic Dependent Surveillance- Contract () logon, pilots should discontinue voice position reports.
Advanced Technology and Oceanic Procedures (ATOP) cannot accept position reports containing latitude and longitude in the ARINC 424 format. The flight crew should use latitudes and longitudes encoded as waypoint names in the format (for example, 54N150W).
ARINC 424 describes a 5-character latitude/longitude format for aircraft navigation databases (for example, 10N40 describes a latitude/longitude of 10N140W). The ATSU will reject any downlink message containing waypoint names in the ARINC 424 format.
- Aircraft filed on PACOTS routes within Oakland Oceanic / airspace must make position reports using latitude/longitude coordinates or named fixes as specified in the track definition messages (TDM). Position reports must comprise information on present position, estimated next position, and ensuing position. Reporting points of reference not specified in the TDM and/or rounding off geographical coordinates is prohibited.
New York Oceanic
- Position reports should be made via ADSC, if the aircraft has capability. The two types of contracts that will be established with each aircraft are a twenty (20) minute Periodic Report Rate and a five (5) mile Lateral Deviation Event. This is in addition to normal waypoint reports.
- Operators should not use for position reports but it should be used for all other ATC communications. Position reports should be made via if is not available.
- All waypoints filed in Field 15 of the flight plan (route field) must be reported as a position report.
- Position reports are to be made via ADS, CPDLC or Voice communication in that order of preference.
- Aircraft with an active ADS connection must make a position report when crossing the IFR boundary (inbound) to ensure connectivity.
- Anchorage Arctic
Position reports and the ability to communicate at any point of the route of flight is vital to the air traffic safety and control process. When flight planning, users are responsible to ensure that they will be capable of compliance. Inability to comply is in violation of requirements. The communication requirements for IFR flights within the Houston Oceanic Control Area are:
- Functioning two-way radio communications equipment capable of communicating with at least one ground station from any point on the route;
- Maintaining a continuous listening watch on the appropriate radio frequency; and
- Reporting of mandatory points.
- The following describes an area in the Houston / where reliable VHF air-to-ground communications below FL180 are not available:
- Position reports and the ability to communicate at any point of the route of flight is vital to the air traffic safety and control process. When flight planning, users are responsible to ensure that they will be capable of compliance. Inability to comply is in violation of requirements. The communication requirements for IFR flights within the Houston Oceanic Control Area are:
Satellite Voice (SATVOICE) Communication Services for Air Traffic Control (ATC)
- The FAA provides Inmarsat and Iridium SATVOICE services for air-to-ground and ground-to-air calls directly with Oakland, New York, and Anchorage Air Route Traffic Control Centers () and New York and San Francisco RADIO. The FAA's SATVOICE services are supplemental to voice communication services.
- The pilot must limit direct SATVOICE contact with ATC to distress and urgency situations, or when other means are not available, and communication is essential.
- When unable to communicate on , the pilot may conduct normal and routine communications with ATC via New York RADIO or San Francisco RADIO on SATVOICE.
The aircraft SATVOICE equipment must be approved in accordance with Advisory Circular 20-150, Airworthiness Approval of Satellite Voice (SATVOICE) Equipment Supporting Air Traffic Service (ATS) Communication.
Portable satellite phones are NOT approved for normal and routine ATC communications.
The operator must use the SATVOICE equipment in accordance with Doc 10038, Satellite Voice Operations Manual (SVOM), with emphasis on the following:
If the flight intends to use SATVOICE capability, the operator must file the appropriate designator (that is, M1 or M3) in Item 10, and the aircraft address (that is, hexadecimal code) in Item 18 of the flight plan.
Aeronautical Information Manual, Chapter 5, Air Traffic Procedures.
- The operator must establish procedures to ensure the flight maintains voice communications (that may include SATVOICE and any required HF SELCAL checks) with every ATS unit along the route of flight.
- When using SATVOICE, the pilot must follow RTF conventions identical to /VHF communications in accordance with applicable standards and regulations pertaining to aeronautical communications.
- Satellite service providers have assigned priority level 2/HGH/Q12 Operational high (second highest) to calls between aircraft and Air Navigation Service Providers. The pilot must verify the priority of the call and act only on ATC clearances/instructions from SATVOICE calls with priority level 2/HGH/Q12, and if in doubt terminate the call and initiate a new call for confirmation.
- The pilot must answer SATVOICE calls when contacted either by the or RADIO facility.
- If the flight intends to use SATVOICE capability, the operator must file the appropriate designator (that is, M1 or M3) in Item 10, and the aircraft address (that is, hexadecimal code) in Item 18 of the flight plan.
The SATVOICE short codes for s and RADIO are in accordance with TBL ENR 7.1-2.
Oceanic Control Area (OCA)
(only for distress, urgency,
other means not available)
ATC via RADIO Facility
(when unable to communicate on HF)
New York East
New York ARTCC
New York RADIO
New York West
New York ARTCC
Houston, San Juan and Miami s
- Frequency 123.45 MHz is the approved air-to-air VHF channel within the above s. This frequency will be used for flights operating over remote and oceanic areas out of range of VHF ground stations to exchange necessary operational information and to facilitate the resolution of operational problems.
- Frequency 123.45 MHz replaces the previously published frequencies used within the Houston, San Juan, and Miami s. This change is necessary to comply with Amendment 74 to ICAO Annex 10, Volume II, which designated 123.45 as the global standard VHF air-to-air frequency.
- Houston, San Juan and Miami s
Strategic Lateral Offset Procedure (SLOP) While Within FAA-Controlled Oceanic Airspace and the Anchorage Flight Information Region (FIR)
- These procedures have been developed in accordance with Document 4444 Procedures for Air Navigation Services - Air Traffic Management, paragraph 16.5.
- It has been determined that allowing aircraft conducting oceanic flight to fly lateral offsets, in increments of .1 nautical mile (NM) up to a maximum of 2 NM right of centerline, will provide an additional safety margin and mitigate the risk of conflict when non-normal events, such as aircraft navigation errors, altitude deviation errors, and turbulence-induced altitude-keeping errors occur.
These procedures are authorized in FAA controlled oceanic airspace, Anchorage , and the airspace surrounding the island of Bermuda, the airspace controlled by the Honolulu Control Facility (HCF) and the airspace controlled by the Guam Combined Center Radar Approach Control ().
- Pilots should apply an offset outbound after reaching their cruising flight level and retain the offset until the top of descent, unless local ATC dictates otherwise.
- For flights departing Hawaii, pilots should apply SLOP upon reaching their initial cruise flight level and they are within 70 NM of entering the Oakland Oceanic Control Area.
- For flights arriving Hawaii, pilots should discontinue SLOP no later than 70 NM after entering HCF airspace, or when receiving radar vectors from HCF, whichever occurs first. Pilots of Hawaiian inter-island flights must not use SLOP.
- Aircraft transiting Bermuda airspace, HCF airspace, or Guam airspace may remain on their established offset.
- Aircraft flying in the Anchorage may apply SLOP as follows:
These procedures provide for offsets within the following guidelines: Along a route or track there will be 21 positions that an aircraft may fly: on centerline or at increments of .1 NM (for example, .1, .2, .3, .4 ….. 1.8, 1.9, 2.0) right of centerline out to a maximum offset of 2 NM. Offsets must not exceed 2 NM right of centerline. The intent of this procedure is to reduce risk (add safety margin) by distributing aircraft laterally across the 21 available positions.
- Pilots must fly the track centerline if their aircraft does not have automatic offset programming capability. Pilots of aircraft unable to offset at .1 NM increments should fly on the track centerline, or at the 1.0 NM or 2.0 NM positions right of centerline when using SLOP.
- Pilots should also fly one of the available offset positions described above to avoid wake turbulence. Pilots should use whatever means available to determine the best offset to fly. An aircraft overtaking a lower altitude aircraft on the same routing should offset within the confines of this procedure, if capable, so as to create the least amount of wake turbulence for the aircraft being overtaken.
Aircraft should not offset to the left of center line nor offset more than 2 NM right of center line. Pilots may contact other aircraft on VHF frequency 123.45, as necessary, to coordinate the best wake turbulence offset option.
It is recognized that pilots will use their judgment to determine the action most appropriate to any given situation and have the final authority and responsibility for the safe operation of the aircraft.
- There is no ATC clearance required for this procedure and it is not necessary that ATC be advised.