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Departure Procedures

Section 2. Departure Procedures

5−2−1. Pre-taxi Clearance Procedures

a. Certain airports have established pre-taxi

clearance programs whereby pilots of departing

instrument flight rules (IFR) aircraft may elect to

receive their IFR clearances before they start taxiing

for takeoff. The following provisions are included in

such procedures:

1. Pilot participation is not mandatory.
2. Participating pilots call clearance delivery or

ground control not more than 10 minutes before

proposed taxi time.

3. IFR clearance (or delay information, if

clearance cannot be obtained) is issued at the time of

this initial call-up.

4. When the IFR clearance is received on

clearance delivery frequency, pilots call ground

control when ready to taxi.

5. Normally, pilots need not inform ground

control that they have received IFR clearance on

clearance delivery frequency. Certain locations may,

however, require that the pilot inform ground control

of a portion of the routing or that the IFR clearance

has been received.

6. If a pilot cannot establish contact on clearance

delivery frequency or has not received an IFR

clearance before ready to taxi, the pilot should contact

ground control and inform the controller accordingly.

b. Locations where these procedures are in effect

are indicated in the Chart Supplement U.S.

5−2−2. Automated Pre−Departure

Clearance Procedures

a. Many airports in the National Airspace System

are equipped with the Terminal Data Link System

(TDLS) that includes the Pre−Departure Clearance

(PDC) and Controller Pilot Data Link Communica-

tion–Departure Clearance (CPDLC-DCL) functions.

Both the PDC and CPDLC-DCL functions automate

the Clearance Delivery operations in the ATCT for

participating users. Both functions display IFR

clearances from the ARTCC to the ATCT. The

Clearance Delivery controller in the ATCT can

append local departure information and transmit the

clearance via data link to participating airline/service

provider computers for PDC. The airline/service

provider will then deliver the clearance via the

Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting

System (ACARS) or a similar data link system, or for

non-data link equipped aircraft, via a printer located

at the departure gate. For CPDLC-DCL, the departure

clearance is uplinked from the ATCT via the Future

Air Navigation System (FANS) to the aircraft

avionics and requires a response from the flight crew.

Both PDC and CPDLC-DCL reduce frequency

congestion, controller workload, and are intended to

mitigate delivery/read back errors.

b. Both services are available only to participating

aircraft that have subscribed to the service through an

approved service provider.

c. In all situations, the pilot is encouraged to

contact clearance delivery if a question or concern

exists regarding an automated clearance. Due to

technical reasons, the following limitations/differ-

ences exist between the two services:

1. PDC

(a) Aircraft filing multiple flight plans are

limited to one PDC clearance per departure airport

within an 18−hour period. Additional clearances will

be delivered verbally.

(b) If the clearance is revised or modified

prior to delivery, it will be rejected from PDC and the

clearance will need to be delivered verbally.

(c) No acknowledgment of receipt or read

back is required for a PDC.


(a) No limitation to the number of clearances


(b) Allows delivery of revised flight data,

including revised departure clearances.

(c) A response from the flight crew is


(d) Requires a logon to the FAA National

Single Data Authority − KUSA − utilizing the ATC

FANS application.

(e) To be eligible, operators must have

received CPDLC/FANS authorization from the