Advisory Circular (AC) No. 302-021

Introduction of TP 312 5th Edition

Issuing Office: Civil Aviation, Standards Document No.: AC 302-021
File Classification No.: Z 5000-34 Issue No.: 03
RDIMS No.: 12611427-V5 Effective Date: 2017-08-03

1.0 Introduction

  • (1) This Advisory Circular (AC) is provided for information and guidance purposes. It describes an example of an acceptable means, but not the only means, of demonstrating compliance with regulations and standards. This AC on its own does not change, create, amend or permit deviations from regulatory requirements, nor does it establish minimum standards.

1.1 Purpose

  • (1) The purpose of this document is to provide information on the elements relating to the associated changes to the aeronautical publications to reflect an operationally based concept for airport certification as presented in TP 312 5th edition.
  • (2) It also provides guidance on airfield improvements planned to occur following the introduction of TP 312 5th edition.

1.2 Applicability

  • (1) This document applies to all Canadian airport operators, manufacturers, suppliers, Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) Headquarters and regional personnel, and the aviation industry involved with the planning, design, and maintenance activities at Canadian aerodromes.

1.3 Description of Changes

  • (1) Section 4.0 updated with respect to the timeline and format for the submission of AGN information to NAV CANADA.
  • (2) Section 4.2, paragraph (7) added to clarify publication considerations pending the publication of the AGN in the CFS.
  • (3) Section 4.3 (4) added to clarify the AGN information to be stated in the AOM for aircraft that have multiple AGNs.

2.0 Reference and Requirements

2.1 Reference Documents

  • (1) It is intended that the following reference materials be used in conjunction with this document:
    • (a) Aeronautics Act (R.S., 1985, c. A-2);
    • (b) Part III, Subpart 2 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) — Airports;
    • (c) Standard 602.96 of the CARs — Operations at or in vicinity of an Aerodrome;
    • (d) Standard 703.15 of the CARs — Scheduled Air Service Requirements;
    • (e) Standard 704.14 of the CARs — Scheduled Air Service Requirements;
    • (f) Standard 705.19 of the CARs — Scheduled Air Service Requirements;
    • (g) Transport Canada Publication, TP 312 — Aerodrome Standards and Recommended Practices;
    • (h) Advisory Circular (AC) 302-018, Issue 1, 2014-11-27 — Grandfathering at Airports pursuant to CAR 302.07;
    • (i) Advisory Circular (AC) 302-019, Issue 1, 2015-07-31 — Methodology for the identification of the Aircraft Group Number (AGN); and
    • (j) Advisory Circular (AC) 302-020, Issue 1, 2015-07-31 — Mixed Operations at Airports;

2.2 Cancelled Documents

  • (1) By default, it is understood that the publication of a new issue of a document automatically renders any earlier issues of the same document null and void.

2.3 Definitions et Abbreviations

  • (1) The following definitions are used in this document:
    • (a) Wingspan: means the maximum width of the aircraft between wing tips, as stated by the manufacturer.
    • (b) Outer Main gear span: means the maximum width between the outer edges of the outer main landing gears, as stated by the aircraft manufacturer.
    • (c) Tail height: means the maximum height of the highest part of the aircraft, as stated by the aircraft manufacturer.
  • (2) The following abbreviations are used in this document:
    • (a) AIRAC: Aeronautical Information Regulation and Control
    • (b) AIM: Transport Canada Aeronautical Information Manual
    • (c) AGN: Aircraft Group Number
    • (d) AOM: Airport Operations Manual
    • (e) CAR: Canadian Aviation Regulation
    • (f) CFS: Canada Flight Supplement

3.0 Background

  • (1) The introduction of TP 312 5th edition is a change in the application concept of the “standards” affecting airport certification. This shift from the design based concept under the previous editions of TP 312 to an operational concept in TP 312 5th aligns the certification standards to the actual (or planned) operation at site by linking the standards to specific aircraft characteristics, aerodrome operating visibility condition, and level of service (Precision, Non-Precision, Non-Instrument). It also complements the Canadian airspace design criteria under TP 308 and other regulatory requirements currently stated in Parts VI and VII of the Canadian Aviation Regulations.
  • (2) This change to an operational concept requires airport operators to be more knowledgeable of the aircraft operations occurring (or planned for) at the airport whereas previous editions of TP 312 were of a design based concept using primarily the runway length in a Code number system to link the standards applicable to the facility.
  • (3) The operational based concept under TP 312 5th edition uses specific characteristics of the critical aircraft (current or planned) to link the respective standards. Each standard in TP 312 5th directs the reader as to which of these aircraft characteristics is being called upon by the standard. These characteristics include;
    • (a) Wingspan (with consideration of the aircraft approach speed category);
    • (b) Outer main gear span; and
    • (c) Tail height.
  • (4) With the introduction of TP 312 5th, all certified airport operators will be required to:
    • (a) amend their Airport Operations Manual to include additional information; and
    • (b) submit an update to the aeronautical publications regarding the certification level of the various parts of the certified aerodrome (airport).

      This is required so that aircrew may assess the aerodrome as being “…suitable for the intended operation” as currently required under 602.96 (2)(b) of the CAR. At this time, there is nothing in the Integrated Aeronautical Information Publications that informs the Aircraft Operator as to the certification level of the infrastructure provided at the airport. Only a general statement is provided as to whether or not the facility is “Certified” or “Registered”. This general statement does not provide the Aircraft Operator adequate detail as to the suitability of each facility offered at an airport.

  • (5) The change in the AOM and aeronautical publications resulting from the introduction of TP 312 5th edition does not oblige airport operators to comply with the standards in TP 312 5th edition or to undertake any physical changes to the infrastructure of the airport. Compliance to TP 312 5th edition would only be required in accordance with the requirement of CAR 302.07 (See AC 302-018 Grandfathering at Airports pursuant to CAR 302.07)
  • (6) Also, the introduction of TP 312 5th edition presents an additional consideration for airport operators that are currently in the advanced planning, or execution phases of capital works. Considering the lead time related to project planning and execution, the airport operator needs to have knowledge of which set of “standards” the airport will be subject to upon its return to service early in the planning process.

4.0 Publication Change Timeline

To facilitate this change in the aeronautical publications culminating in a common AIRAC date for the publication changes, the following 3 year timeline is presented:

  • (1) Year # 1 (ending December 31st 2016)
    • (a) TCCA published the following Advisory Circulars:
      • (i) Grandfathering at Airports pursuant to CAR 302.07;
      • (ii) Methodology for the identification of the Aircraft Group Number (AGN); and
      • (iii) Introduction of TP 312 5th edition.
        • (A) Identification of the Aircraft Group Number (AGN)
        • (B) Aeronautical publication changes
        • (C) Airport Operations Manual (AOM) changes
        • (D) Airport improvements following the introduction of TP 312 5th edition
    • (b) Airport Operators were asked to commence the process of identifying the AGN for each part of the manoeuvring area and include this information in the Airport Operations Manual prior to the end of 2017.
  • (2) Year # 2 (ending December 31st 2017)
    • (a) TCCA will:
      • (i) Publish Advisory Circulars for Parts VI and VII – Changes to Aeronautical Information for certified aerodromes; and
      • (ii) Update the AIM, and as required the AIP Canada (ICAO), to advise the aviation community of the introduction of the operational concept and the publication changes to aerodrome information.
  • (3) Year # 3 (ending December 31st 2018)
    • (a) Publication of airport certification level (Aircraft Group Number, level of service, aerodrome visibility) on a common AIRAC date in the CFS. This is planned to occur on AIRAC date of 03 JAN 2019. To achieve this publication date, airport operators are advised that all the necessary information must be submitted to NAV CANADA between 01 APR 2018 and 30 APR 2018.
    • (b) Convene a Focus Group for the 1st amendment to the 5th Edition.

4.1 Identification of Aircraft Group Number (AGN)

  • (1) Airport operators were asked to commence, prior to December 31st 2016, the process to identify which AGN is applicable for each part of the manoeuvring area at the airport and commence the process of amending their Airport Operations Manuals to include this information. Advisory Circular 302-019 provides guidance on methodology to be used for the identification of the AGN for the runway and taxiways at the airport.
  • (2) The identification of the AGN based on the specifications in TP 312 5th does not impose any obligation to comply with the provisions of TP 312 5th as the current status of the facility is “grandfathered” pursuant to CAR 302.07. The objective is to establish the AGN to be published in the aeronautical publications identifying the suitability of the facility for those air operators that must operate at a certified aerodrome (airport). The publication of the AGN for all airports is a crucial element for the successful transition to the operational concept of airport certification, and for the consistency of information provided in the aeronautical publications.
  • (3) Airport operators are advised to consider the actual characteristics of the airport infrastructure against the requirements in TP 312 5th edition when establishing AGN for the various parts of the airport facility.
  • (4) Where the airport infrastructure is such that it does not meet the characteristics stated in TP 312 5th edition for the current aircraft type used for commercial scheduled passenger operations, the published AGN would be the minimum AGN that includes the aircraft type currently used for commercial scheduled passenger operations at the airport, since these would be considered as “grandfathered” pursuant to CAR 302.07.
  • (5) Where the airport facilities are of a similar size (e.g. runway length) and characteristics (strip, graded areas, level of service, etc.) to another airport in Canada without any deviations, exemptions, or operating restrictions, it may be beneficial for the airport operator to declare the AGN based on a comparative facility. The airport operator is advised to present a comparative analysis to their respective TCCA regional office for consideration of AGN publication. This comparative analysis is to be completed and submitted to TCCA for review and acceptance within 18 months of the official publication of TP 312 5th edition.

    E.g. The airport may be receiving small commuter type aircraft on a regular basis and have such identified as their critical aircraft, while another site (without any operating restrictions), of similar size (e.g. runway length), characteristics (strip, graded areas, etc.) and level of service may be receiving airliner type aircraft such as the DH8-200/300 or ATR 42. In this situation the publication of the AGN would be similar to the examples in (4) above.

4.2 Aeronautical Publication Changes

  • (1) The Airport Operator is responsible for operating and maintaining their airport as certified under Part III, Subpart 2 of the CARs. Under Part III of the CARs, the Airport Operator chooses the level of service to be provided and states such in their Airport Operations Manual (AOM), and where applicable publishes the level of service in Aeronautical Information Publications (i.e. type of runways, taxiways, hours of operation, reduced/low visibility procedures, CRFI, PLR/PCN available, weight restrictions, etc.).
  • (2) As stated previously, current aeronautical publications are lacking information about the certification level of the airport for specific operations. The only items currently presented in the CFS is “CERT” without any further indication as to what type or size of aircraft operation the airport, or part thereof, is certified to accommodate. This current method of publication does not adequately address the needs of air operators that are required to ascertain the suitability of the airport for their intended operation as mandated in the Canadian Aviation Regulations.
  • (3) With the introduction of the operational concept in TP 312 5th, the aeronautical publications will be updated to include information on the certification level of the various parts of the airport. These publication changes will complement current requirements in CAR 602.96(2)(b) and the scheduled air service requirements stated in CAR 703.15, 704.14, and 705.19.

    Division V — Operations at or in the Vicinity of an Aerodrome

    General

    602.96 (2)(b) the aerodrome is suitable for the intended operation;

    Scheduled Air Service Requirements

    703.15 (1) Subject to subsection (2), every air operator that operates a scheduled air service for the purpose of transporting persons shall operate the service between airports or heliports or between an airport or heliport and a military aerodrome.

    704.14 (1) Subject to subsection (2), every air operator that operates a scheduled air service for the purpose of transporting persons shall operate the service between airports or heliports or between an airport or heliport and a military aerodrome.

    705.19 (1) Subject to subsection (2), every air operator that operates a scheduled air service for the purpose of transporting persons shall operate the service between airports or heliports or between an airport or heliport and a military aerodrome.

  • (4) It is important that the airport information in the aeronautical publication be presented in a consistent manner for all airports to facilitate the understanding of this operational concept and new information in the publications.

    To achieve consistency in the publications for all airports and promote the understanding of this publication change, the update to the site specific information on the runways and taxiways will need to be done on a common date nationally.

  • (5) Therefore, airport operators must update AOMs and submit them to TCCA. Also, all information relating to the AGN for the various parts of the manoeuvring must be submitted so that NAV CANADA receives the information between 01 APR 2018 and 30 APR 2018 for publication on 03 JAN 2019. Prior to this publication change, Advisory Circulars to Parts VI and VII will be issued, advising users of the content and format changes in the publications.
  • (6) In order to expedite the processing of the information by NAV CANADA, the change request should contain only the AGN information for the runway or taxiway environment (See 4.3 (3) and (4) below) that will be added to the CFS and should not be mixed with other requests. Only the “publication AGN” relating to the runway environment for each runway in addition to the taxiway environment AGN for taxiways when the AGN is lower than the associated runway, should be submitted. For example:
    Runway or Taxiway designator AGN
    04/22 V
    10R/28L VI
    10L/28R VI
    TWY A & C IV
    TWY G IIIA
  • (7) Some airports have already initiated the certification to TP 312 5th edition standards based on the characteristics of the largest scheduled passenger service aircraft serving their airport. Where this is the case, and larger AGN aircraft are also operating at the airport, there is a need to advise the aircrews of the certification level of the facility until such a time that the AGN will be published in the RWY CERT section of the CFS. The publication of this information is safety critical as it will provide aircrews with information about the protections provided under airport certification with respect to the runway environment (lateral separations from object, runway safety areas, obstacle limitation surfaces, etc…) The following is an example of a note that would be added to the RWY CERT section of the CFS pending the publication of the certification AGN in the CFS.

    “Runway 03-21 certified for aircraft with a maximum wingspan of 36 metres and
    a reference Vref no greater than 120kts”

4.3 Airport Operations Manual (AOM) Changes

  • (1) Depending on the date of initial certification of the various parts and systems at the airport, it is common to have standards from earlier editions of TP 312, as well as the current edition, in force at the same time at the airport. To facilitate the identification of these earlier installations and the standards applicable to them, it is important that the parts and systems subject to earlier editions of TP 312 be clearly identified in the Airport Operations Manual (AOM) together with the applicable TP 312 edition and amendment number.
  • (2) The introduction of the operational concept for airport certification standards will require the publication of Aircraft Group Numbers for each part of the manoeuvring area (runways and taxiways) at the airport.
  • (3) As part of amending AOMs to indicate which “standards” are applicable at the airport, AOMs will need to include the AGN to be used in the publications for each taxiway and runway. Below are examples of how this may be presented in the AOM where a runway is grandfathered to previous standards. Where the AGN is noted within parentheses it is understood by TCCA that it is for publication purposes only and the certification basis remains with previous editions of TP 312.
    Runway Level of Service Code Number or AGN
    (publication AGN if different)
    Surface type
    28-10 Precision 4 (VI) Asphalt

    or;

    Runway Level of Service Code Number (AGN) Surface type
    28-10 Precision 4 (VI) Asphalt

    Note: When the runway Obstacle Limitation Surfaces, runway strip and runway safety area is updated to TP 312 5th edition standards in the above 2 examples, the code number would be removed. The absence of a Code number would indicate that the runway is subject to the standards in 5th edition. Where there are specific elements that are still subject to previous editions, such as runway slopes, width, or visual aids, they must be clearly noted in the AOM.

  • (4) Some aircraft, such as the DASH 8/400 have an outer main gear span that is of a higher AGN for those related standards, such as runway or taxiway width. Where this is the case, there needs to be a distinction in the AOM between the AGN relating to the operating width of the runway or taxiway based on outer main gear span and the AGN relating to the operating environment of the runway or taxiway (safety area, object separation standards, obstacle limitation surfaces, etc…), which are primarily based on wingspan.

    The certification standards relating to the safety area and object separation are critical in providing the recognized level of safety for the runway/taxiway environment for the safety of aircraft operations. It is this AGN that will be published in the CFS for aircrews to ascertain that “…the aerodrome is suitable for the intended operation; …” (CAR 602.96 (2)(b).

    The following are examples of how this information may be presented in the AOM.

    Runway Level of Service Code Number or AGN
    (publication AGN if different)
    Surface type
    28-10 Precision 4
    (IIIA – runway environment)
    (VI-runway width)
    Asphalt
    Taxiway Code Letter (AGN) Surface type
    A C (VI – Taxiway width)
    (IIIA – Taxiway environment)
    Asphalt

4.4 Airport Improvements Following the Introduction of TP 312 5th Edition

  • (1) CAR 302.07 (1)(a)(ii) requires the operator of an airport to comply “...with the standards set out in the aerodrome standards and recommended practices publications, as they read on the date on which the part or facility was returned to service,...”
  • (2) However, improvements to the airfield components typically involve significant earth works and, are complex in nature due to the regulatory requirements, sometimes from other authorities and the resulting impact on its operation during execution of the works. These projects often require long lead times in the planning, typically 12 – 24 months and sometimes longer, due to multiple steps in the process, such as tendering or various agency approvals, prior to the execution of the works.
  • (3) In the above mentioned lead time would be the submission of the proposed facility changes to TCCA for those elements that are addressed under Part III of the CARs. Also, where the airport operator is planning to continue operations during the period of construction, a Plan of Operations during Construction must be submitted to TCCA for approval to incorporate within the “Airport Operations Manual” (AOM).
  • (4) The introduction of TP 312 5th edition presents a difficulty for airport operators that are currently in the advanced planning, or execution phases of capital works. The timeline required to plan, seek approvals, tender and execute these works is typically measured in months and years, and the airport operator needs to have knowledge of which set of “standards” the facility will be subject to upon its return to service early in the planning phase.
  • (5) In considering the above, TCCA intends to issue a National regulatory exemption to 302.07(1)(a)(ii) so that the airport may use the standards contained in TP 312 4th edition, subject to the following conditions:
    • (a) Final project plans, including the Plan of Operations during Construction, are submitted to TCCA for review before the 12 month anniversary of the coming into force of TP 312 5th edition; and
    • (b) The works are completed in full and affected areas fully operational within 24 months of the coming into force of TP 312 5th edition.

5.0 Information Management

  • (1) Not Applicable.

6.0 Document History

  • (1) Advisory Circular (AC) 302-021, Issue 02, RDIMS numbers 11195688 (E), 11195774 (F) dated 2015-11-04 – Introduction of TP 312 5th Edition.
  • (2) Advisory Circular (AC) 302-021, Issue 01, RDIMS numbers 9859532 (E), 10070832 (F) dated 2015-07-31 – Introduction of TP 312 5th Edition.

7.0 Contact Office

For more information, please contact:
http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/regions.htm

Suggestions for amendment to this document are invited, and should be submitted via:
TC.FlightStandards-Normsvol.TC@tc.gc.ca

Original signed by

Robert Sincennes
Director, Standards Branch
Civil Aviation

Date modified: