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United Kingdom Division

AIPs & AIRAC Cycles
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Aeronautical Information Publications
Revision: 27 Jun 2022

The AIP is informally known as the Airman's Manual. Almost every country in the world will have an AIP, and most are publicly visible. In the UK, NATS is responsible for publishing and updating the AIP accordingly. It is publicly visible, and includes all information pertaining to the EGTT (London) and EGPX (Scottish) airspace. The POSCON UK Division also uses it to ensure we remain as realistic as possible, as well as an extremely useful resource for both controlling and flying alike.

 

It is often broken down into 3 parts, each with a corresponding acronym used for sub-sections and charts;

  1. General (GEN) - Contains information on legal matters, acronyms and abbreviations, conversion charts and available services.
  2. En-Route (ENR) - Contains information on sectors, squawk allocation, routes, navigational waypoints and radio fixes (such as VORs, NDBs and DMEs), and en-route positions and frequencies.
  3. Aerodrome (AD) - Contains aerodrome-specific information, such as positions, frequencies, runways, local procedures and restrictions, and charts.
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Aeronautical Information Regulation and Control (AIRAC)
Revision: 27 Jun 2022

The world moves quickly, and so does the aviation industry. Airspace structure is revised, routes are changed, and aerodromes change with them. As such, all of the information in the AIP has to be regularly updated. This is done via AIRAC; a standardised system that ensures all updated information is correctly advertised, that all relevant people are able to see the updates, that the regularity of updates is maintained, and most importantly that everyone sees the same data.

 

Updates to the AIP are made every 28 days. These periods are referred to as AIRAC cycles. Every 28 days the AIRAC cycles changes, and so does the AIP. There are usually 13 AIRAC cycles each year. These cycles are given a 4 number code, which can be easily identified; the first two numbers correspond to the last two numbers of the year (i.e. 22 for 2022), and the last two numbers correspond to the number of the cycle in the year (i.e. 2206 for a cycle effective 16th June 2022). The effective dates of AIRAC cycles 2020-2024 can be found below.

AIRAC-Table1.png

The Division also releases a new sector file for use on the Network, usually with each AIRAC cycle. It is recommended all controllers use the most up-to-date sector file available, as others may be missing crucial updates/revisions.

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