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Pilot/Controller Glossary 

6/17/21 

which threatens the safety of the aircraft or its 
passengers. 

SPECIAL FLIGHT RULES AREA (SFRA)

 An 

area in the NAS, described in 14 CFR Part 93, 
wherein the flight of aircraft is subject to special 
traffic rules, unless otherwise authorized by air traffic 
control. Not all areas listed in 14 CFR Part 93 are 
designated SFRA, but special air traffic rules apply to 
all areas described in 14 CFR Part 93. 

SPECIAL INSTRUMENT APPROACH PROCE-
DURE

 

(See INSTRUMENT APPROACH PROCEDURE.) 

SPECIAL USE AIRSPACE

 Airspace of defined 

dimensions identified by an area on the surface of the 
earth wherein activities must be confined because of 
their nature and/or wherein limitations may be 
imposed upon aircraft operations that are not a part of 
those activities. Types of special use airspace are: 

a. 

Alert Area

 Airspace which may contain a high 

volume of pilot training activities or an unusual type 
of aerial activity, neither of which is hazardous to 
aircraft. Alert Areas are depicted on aeronautical 
charts for the information of nonparticipating pilots. 
All activities within an Alert Area are conducted in 
accordance with Federal Aviation Regulations, and 
pilots of participating aircraft as well as pilots 
transiting the area are equally responsible for 
collision avoidance. 

b. 

Controlled Firing Area

 Airspace wherein 

activities are conducted under conditions so 
controlled as to eliminate hazards to nonparticipating 
aircraft and to ensure the safety of persons and 
property on the ground. 

c. 

Military Operations Area (MOA)

 Permanent 

and temporary MOAs are airspace established 
outside of Class A airspace area to separate or 
segregate certain nonhazardous military activities 
from IFR traffic and to identify for VFR traffic where 
these activities are conducted. Permanent MOAs are 
depicted on Sectional Aeronautical, VFR Terminal 
Area, and applicable En Route Low Altitude Charts. 

Note: Temporary MOAs are not charted. 

(Refer to AIM.) 

d. 

Prohibited Area

 Airspace designated under 

14 CFR Part 73 within which no person may operate 

an aircraft without the permission of the using 
agency. 

(Refer to AIM.) 
(Refer to En Route Charts.) 

e. 

Restricted Area

 Permanent and temporary 

restricted areas are airspace designated under 14 CFR 
Part 73, within which the flight of aircraft, while not 
wholly prohibited, is subject to restriction. Most 
restricted areas are designated joint use and IFR/VFR 
operations in the area may be authorized by the 
controlling ATC facility when it is not being utilized 
by the using agency. Permanent restricted areas are 
depicted on Sectional Aeronautical, VFR Terminal 
Area, and applicable En Route charts. Where joint 
use is authorized, the name of the ATC controlling 
facility is also shown. 

Note: Temporary restricted areas are not charted. 

(Refer to 14 CFR Part 73.) 
(Refer to AIM.) 

f. 

Warning Area

 A warning area is airspace of 

defined dimensions extending from 3 nautical miles 
outward from the coast of the United States, that 
contains activity that may be hazardous to 
nonparticipating aircraft. The purpose of such 
warning area is to warn nonparticipating pilots of the 
potential danger. A warning area may be located over 
domestic or international waters or both. 

SPECIAL VFR CONDITIONS

 Meteorological 

conditions that are less than those required for basic 
VFR flight in Class B, C, D, or E surface areas and 
in which some aircraft are permitted flight under 
visual flight rules. 

(See SPECIAL VFR OPERATIONS.) 
(Refer to 14 CFR Part 91.) 

SPECIAL VFR FLIGHT [ICAO]

 A VFR flight 

cleared by air traffic control to operate within Class 
B, C, D, and E surface areas in meteorological 
conditions below VMC. 

SPECIAL VFR OPERATIONS

 Aircraft operating 

in accordance with clearances within Class B, C, D, 
and E surface areas in weather conditions less than the 
basic VFR weather minima. Such operations must be 
requested by the pilot and approved by ATC. 

(See SPECIAL VFR CONDITIONS.) 
(See ICAO term SPECIAL VFR FLIGHT.) 

SPEED

 

(See AIRSPEED.) 
(See GROUND SPEED.) 

PCG S