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Aviation Acronyms

PPL – Private Pilot License

CPL – Commercial Pilot License

VFR – Visual Flight Rules

IFR – Instrument Flight Rules

IMC – Instrument Meteorological Conditions

METAR  – Meteorological Terminal Aviation Routine Weather Report

TAF –  Terminal Area Forecast

GFA – Graphical Area Forecast

ATIS – Automatic Terminal Information Service

POH – Pilot’s Operating Handbook, a guide with information for a particular model of aircraft, giving all the important speeds, weights, procedures, characteristics you need to know to fly that particular airplane.

AIM – Aeronautical Information Manual

SM – Statute Mile

AGL – Above Ground Level

ASL – Above Sea Level

FTM – Flight Training Manual. The main manual for flight training in Canada, published by Transport Canada.

ELT – Emergency Locator Transmitter

ADF   –    automatic direction finding

AME   –  aircraft maintenance engineer

ATC   –  Air Traffic Control

ATS   –   Air Traffic Services

CAS   –  calibrated airspeed

CDI  –   course deviation indicator

C of A  – Certificate of Airworthiness

DF   –   direction finding

ETA   –   estimated time of arrival

gph   –   gallons per hour

IAS   –   indicated airspeed

in. Hg    –   inches of mercury

kHz  –  kilohertz

kt.   –   knot(s)

lb.    –  pound(s)

  –  magnetic

mb   –  millibar(s)

MHz  –  megahertz

NM     –   nautical mile(s)

OAT    – outside air temperature

OBS   –    omnibearing selector

SM     –   statute mile(s)

SVFR   –   special VFR flight

TAS   –    true airspeed

TCA    –   terminal control area

UTC   –    co-ordinated universal time (Z)

VHF    –    very high frequency

VNC   –   VFR Navigation Chart

VOR    –    VHF (very high frequency) Omnidirectional Range

VORTAC   –   combination of VOR and TACAN

NOTAM   –   notice to airmen

RNAV   –   area navigation, a method of IFR navigation using beacons. Used to be called “random navigation” hence the acronym RNAV

ICAO   –   International Civil Aviation Organization airport code. The ICAO is a four character alphanumeric code designating each airport around the world