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AFIS Training

Aerodrome Flight Information Service

Overview

Many smaller aerodromes in the UK have an air traffic service called the Aerodrome Flight Information Service (AFIS). The fundamental feature of this service is that Aerodrome Flight Information Service Officers (AFISOs) control the movement of all aircraft on the ground within the airfield boundary, but they have NO CONTROL over aircraft in the air.  Airborne traffic is managed by means of position reports and pilots' statements of their intentions.

Club Training

The Club provides training for members wishing to qualify as AFISOs. This is a Club qualification only, but an AFIS qualification can also be obtained with VATSIM. Members should contact the Club's Air Traffic Services Manager via The Forum for further information on these two schemes.

Formal Definition

Aerodrome flight information service (AFIS) is the term used to describe the provision of information useful for the safe and efficient conduct of aerodrome traffic at those aerodromes designated for use by international general aviation where the appropriate air traffic services authority determines that the provision of aerodrome control service is not justified, or is not justified on a 24-hour basis.

AFIS Phraseology

The correct radio communication phraseology for AFIS controlled aerodromes may be found in the Club's Air Traffic Control Manual and in the UK Civil Aviation Authority's Radio Telephony Manual CAP413. It is important to use this phraseology for clarity and brevity (and in the real aviation world - safety).

Information Provided to Pilots

The AFISO will pass to pilots information about: -

Pilot Reports to the AFISO

Departing pilots must report their aircraft type, intended destination and direction of leaving the aerodrome traffic zone.

Arriving pilots are requested to provide information about their aircraft type, position, heading, expected time of arrival and intentions on arrival within the Aerodrome Traffic Zone (ATZ).

Ground Movement Control

Aircraft on the ground at an AFIS controlled airfield require permission to manoeuvre, or taxi.  Before departure this means that the pilot requests permission to taxi to the active runway, and the AFISO gives instructions on the route and holding point.  The AFISO MUST NOT give instructions to any aircraft on the ground to enter the active runway. Entry onto the active runway is at the pilot's discretion only.

Aircraft approaching to land MUST NOT be given landing clearance or instructions.  The AFISO can only issue taxiing instructions to inbound aircraft after they have landed and vacated the active runway. Once clear of the runway, the pilot must comply with the instructions given by the AFISO to taxi to parking.

Airborne Traffic Reporting

Departing aircraft may be asked by the AFISO for position reports at specific locations or altitudes, plus a statement of their intentions after takeoff. Arriving aircraft will be expected to provide information about their aircraft type, position, heading, expected time of arrival and intentions on arrival (as above).

Pilot Responsibilities