Aeronautical Information Service
One of the least known and most vital roles in support of international civil aviation is filled by the Aeronautical Information Service (AIS). The objective of the Aeronautical Information Service is to ensure the flow of information necessary for the safety, regularity and efficiency of international air navigation.
The manner in which aeronautical information is gathered and managed is governed by Annex 15 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation (ICAO Annex 15), which defines how an aeronautical information service shall receive and/or originate, collate or assemble, edit, format, publish/store and distribute specified aeronautical information/data. The goal is to satisfy the need for uniformity and consistency in the provision of aeronautical information/data that is required for operational use by international civil aviation.
ICAO Annex 15 specifies that aeronautical information should be published as an integrated aeronautical information package (IAIP), composed of the following elements:
- The Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP), including amendment services
- AIP supplements
- Aeronautical Information Circulars (AIC)
- NOTAM (Notice to Airmen)—alerts aircraft pilots of any hazards en route or at a specific location
- Checklists and lists of valid NOTAM
- Pre-flight Information Bulletins (PIB)
Each element is used to distribute specific types of aeronautical information.
ICAO Annex 15
A total of 35 amendments updated Annex 15 over the years to meet the rapid changes brought about by air travel and associated information technology. In recent years, Annex 15 amendments have reflected the increased need for the timely provision of quality aeronautical information/data and terrain data as they have become critical components of data-dependant on-board navigation systems. The Annex now contains many provisions aimed at preventing corrupt or erroneous aeronautical information/data which can potentially affect the safety of air navigation.
The philosophy underlying Annex 15, which stems from Article 28 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation, is that each State is responsible for making available to civil aviation interests any and all information which is pertinent to and required for the operation of aircraft engaged in international civil aviation within its territory, as well as in areas outside its territory in which the State has air traffic control or other responsibilities.
Transition from AIS to AIM
We are in the age of the Internet, satellite navigation and computer networks, yet our approach to aeronautical information distribution is still based on paper charts, paper documentation and telex-based text messages. Much of the data is entered more than once in different computers using a keyboard rather than by file transfer or database transactions.
The computer-based navigation systems, and area navigation (RNAV), required navigation performance (RNP) and air traffic management requirements, introduced a need for new corresponding AIS requirements for quality and timeliness of aeronautical information.
The role of present AIS would need to transform to an information management service, changing duties, responsibilities and scope to satisfy these new requirements and to cope with and manage the provision of information. The definition of a future high-level view as to the shape, nature and content of a strategy for the evolution from traditional product-centric AIS to the enlarged scope of data-centric aeronautical information management (AIM) began and ICAO took the lead at the global level with regard to the transition from AIS to AIM.
The aeronautical information services must transition to a broader concept of aeronautical information management, with a different method of information provision and management given its data-centric nature as opposed to the product-centric nature of AIS. The expectations are that the transition to AIM will not involve many changes in terms of the scope of information to be distributed. The major change will be the increased emphasis on data distribution, which should place the future AIM in a position to better serve airspace users and air traffic management in terms of their information management requirements.
Aeronautical Information Service by Region/Country
|State||Relevant AIS websites|
|Albania||AIS webpage EAD|
|Armenia||AIS webpage, eAIP, NOTAM EAD|
|Austria||AIS webpage Homebriefing EAD|
|Belgium||AIS webpage eAIP|
|Germany MIL||MIL AIS webpage|
|Netherlands||AIS webpage eAIP Homebriefing EAD|
|Switzerland||AIM services Briefing services EAD|
|Ukraine||AIS webpage EAD|
|State||Relevant AIS websites|
|Argentina||AIP, SUP, AIC|
|Brazil||AIP, SUP, AIC, NOTAM, Charts|
|Chile||AIP, SUP, AIC, NOTAM, Charts|
|Ecuador||AIP, SUP, AIC, NOTAM, Charts|
|State||Relevant AIS websites|
|Kyrgyzstan||AIP, AIC, NOTAMS|
|Mongolia||AIP, SUP, AIC|
|Saudi Arabia||ANS webpage|
|Sri Lanka||AIP, SUP, AIC, NOTAM|
|Taiwan||AIP, SUP, AIC, NOTAM|
Not all contracting states of ICAO provide an online Aeronautical Information Service, and the following list may not be complete:
- Sri Lanka
- United Kingdom
- United States
- Air Traffic Management Bureau
- Finavia Aeronautical Information Service
- Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH
- Japan Aeronautical Information Service Center
- Service d'Information Aéronautique du Maroc
- Aeronautical Information Services Mongolia
- Internet Pilot Planning Center
- Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines
- Polska Agencja Żeglugi Powietrznej
- (NAV) Portuguese Aeronautical Information Services
- Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore
- Aeropuertos Españoles y Navegación Aérea
- Aeronautical Information Services of the Sri Lanka
- Färdplanering (Flight Planning Centre - FPC)
- Turkey Aeronautical Information Managemenet Staff Association
- National Air Traffic Services (NATS)
- Aeronautical Information Management at the FAA website
- AIS of Republic of Uzbekistan
- Annex 15 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation
- ICAO Roadmap for transition from AIS to AIM