background image





Controlled Airspace

5. Aircraft Speed.

Unless otherwise autho-

rized or required by ATC, no person may operate an
aircraft at or below 2,500 feet above the surface
within 4 nautical miles of the primary airport of a
Class D airspace area at an indicated airspeed of more
than 200 knots (230 mph).


Class D airspace areas are depicted on Sectional

and Terminal charts with blue segmented lines, and
on IFR En Route Lows with a boxed [D].


Surface area arrival extensions:


Class D surface area arrival extensions for

instrument approach procedures may be Class D or
Class E airspace. As a general rule, if all extensions
are 2 miles or less, they remain part of the Class D
surface area. However, if any one extension is greater
than 2 miles, then all extensions will be Class E


 Surface area arrival extensions are effective

during the published times of the surface area. For
part–time Class D surface areas that revert to Class E
airspace, the arrival extensions will remain in effect
as Class E airspace. For part–time Class D surface
areas that change to Class G airspace, the arrival
extensions will become Class G at the same time.

e. Separation for VFR Aircraft.

No separation

services are provided to VFR aircraft.


−2−6. Class E Airspace

a. Definition.

Class E airspace is controlled

airspace that is designated to serve a variety of
terminal or en route purposes as described in this

b. Operating Rules and Pilot/Equipment


1. Pilot Certification.

No specific certifica-

tion required.

2. Equipment.

No specific equipment

required by the airspace.

3. Arrival or Through Flight Entry Require-


No specific requirements.

c. Charts.

Class E airspace below 14,500 feet

MSL is charted on Sectional, Terminal, and IFR
Enroute Low Altitude charts.

d. Vertical limits.

Except where designated at a

lower altitude (see paragraph 3

−2−6e, below, for

specifics), Class E airspace in the United States
consists of:


The airspace extending upward from 14,500

feet MSL to, but not including, 18,000 feet MSL
overlying the 48 contiguous states, the District of
Columbia and Alaska, including the waters within
nautical 12 miles from the coast of the 48 contiguous
states and Alaska; excluding:


The Alaska peninsula west of longit-

ude 160



'00''W.; and


 The airspace below 1,500 feet above the

surface of the earth unless specifically designated
lower (for example, in mountainous terrain higher
than 13,000 feet MSL).


The airspace above FL 600 is Class E


e. Functions of Class E Airspace. 

Class E

airspace may be designated for the following

1. Surface area designated for an airport

where a control tower is not in operation.

 Class E

surface areas extend upward from the surface to a
designated altitude, or to the adjacent or overlying
controlled airspace.  The airspace will be configured
to contain all instrument procedures.


To qualify for a Class E surface area, the

airport must have weather observation and reporting
capability, and communications capability must exist
with aircraft down to the runway surface.


A Class E surface area may also be

designated to accommodate part-time operations at a
Class C or Class D airspace location (for example,
those periods when the control tower is not in


Pilots should refer to the airport page in

the applicable Chart Supplement U.S. for surface area
status information.

2. Extension to a surface area.

Class E

airspace may be designated as extensions to Class B,
Class C, Class D, and Class E surface areas. Class E
airspace extensions begin at the surface and extend up
to the overlying controlled airspace. The extensions
provide controlled airspace to contain standard
instrument approach procedures without imposing a
communications requirement on pilots operating
under VFR. Surface area arrival extensions become
part of the surface area and are in effect during the
same times as the surface area.