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Operating in the Various Types of Airspace – Classes A, B and C

in Airspace

Class A


Pilots operating an aircraft in Class A airspace must conduct that operation under IFR and only under an ATC clearance received prior to entering the airspace. Unless otherwise authorized by ATC, each aircraft operating in Class A airspace must be equipped with a two-way radio capable of communicating with ATC on a frequency assigned by ATC. Unless otherwise authorized by ATC, all aircraft within Class A airspace must be equipped with the appropriate transponder equipment meeting all applicable specifications found in 14 CFR section 91.215.

Class B

All pilots operating an aircraft within a Class B airspace area must receive an ATC clearance from the ATC facility having jurisdiction for that area. The pilot in command (PIC) may not take off or land an aircraft at an airport within a Class B airspace unless he or she has met one of the following requirements:

  1. A private pilot certificate.
  2. A recreational pilot certificate and all requirements contained within 14 CFR section 61.101(d), or the requirements for a student pilot seeking a recreational pilot certificate in 14 CFR section 61.94.
  3. A sport pilot certificate and all requirements contained within 14 CFR section 61.325, or the requirements for a student pilot seeking a recreational pilot certificate in 14 CFR section 61.94, or the aircraft is operated by a student pilot who has met the requirements of 14 CFR sections 61.94 and 61.95, as applicable.

Unless otherwise authorized by ATC, all aircraft within Class B airspace must be equipped with the applicable operating transponder and automatic altitude reporting equipment specified in 14 CFR section 91.215(a) and an operable two-way radio capable of communications with ATC on appropriate frequencies for that Class B airspace area.

Class C

For the purpose of this section, the primary airport is the airport for which the Class C airspace area is designated. A satellite airport is any other airport within the Class C airspace area. No pilot may take off or land an aircraft at a satellite airport within a Class C airspace area except in compliance with FAA arrival and departure traffic patterns.

Two-way radio communications must be established and maintained with the ATC facility providing air traffic services prior to entering the airspace and thereafter maintained while within the airspace.


A pilot departing from the primary airport or satellite airport with an operating control tower must establish and maintain two-way radio communications with the control tower, and thereafter as instructed by ATC while operating in the Class C airspace area. If departing from a satellite airport without an operating control tower, the pilot must establish and maintain two-way radio communications with the ATC facility having jurisdiction over the Class C airspace area as soon as practicable after departing.

Unless otherwise authorized by the ATC having jurisdiction over the Class C airspace area, all aircraft within Class C airspace must be equipped with the appropriate transponder equipment meeting all applicable specifications found in 14 CFR section 91.215.

 

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