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6/17/21 

Pilot/Controller Glossary 

PILOT/CONTROLLER

 

GLOSSARY

 

PURPOSE 

a. 

This Glossary was compiled to promote a common understanding of the terms used in the Air Traffic 

Control system. It includes those terms which are intended for pilot/controller communications. Those terms 
most frequently used in pilot/controller communications are printed in 

bold italics

. The definitions are primarily 

defined in an operational sense applicable to both users and operators of the National Airspace System. Use of 
the Glossary will preclude any misunderstandings concerning the system’s design, function, and purpose. 

b. 

Because of the international nature of flying, terms used in the Lexicon, published by the International 

Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), are included when they differ from FAA definitions. These terms are 
followed by “[ICAO].” For the reader’s convenience, there are also cross references to related terms in other parts 
of the Glossary and to other documents, such as the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) and the Aeronautical 
Information Manual (AIM). 

c. 

This Glossary will be revised, as necessary, to maintain a common understanding of the system. 

EXPLANATION OF CHANGES 

d. 

Terms Added: 
AERONAUTICAL INFORMATION SERVICES (AIS) 
CERTIFICATE OF WAIVER OR AUTHORIZATION (COA) 
FLYAWAY 
HIGH UPDATE RATE SURVEILLANCE 
REMOTE PILOT IN COMMAND (RPIC) 
SELF

BRIEFING 

SMALL UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEM (sUAS) 
VISUAL OBSERVER (VO) 

e. 

Terms Deleted: 

ARINC 
NATIONAL FLIGHT DATA CENTER (NFDC) 

f. 

Terms Modified: 

DOMESTIC NOTICES 
FLIGHT PLAN 
FLIGHT SERVICE STATION (FSS) 
ICING 
INTERNATIONAL NOTICES 

g. 

Editorial/format changes were made where necessary. Revision bars were not used due to the insignificant 

nature of the changes. 

PCG