Saturday, March 21, 2020



Civil aviation is one of two major categories of flying, representing all non-military aviation, both private and commercial. Most of the countries in the world are members of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and work together to establish common standards and recommended practices for civil aviation through that agency.

Civil aviation includes two major categories:

Scheduled air transport, including all passenger and cargo flights operating on regularly scheduled routes; and
General aviation (GA), including all other civil flights, private or commercial
Although scheduled air transport is the larger operation in terms of passenger numbers, GA is larger in the number of flights (and flight hours, in the U.S.) In the U.S., GA carries 166 million passengers each year,more than any individual airline, though less than all the airlines combined. Since 2004, the US Airlines combined have carried over 600 million passengers each year, and in 2014, they carried a combined 662,819,232 passengers.

Some countries also make a regulatory distinction based on whether aircraft are flown for hire like:

Commercial aviation includes most or all flying done for hire, particularly scheduled service on airlines; and
Private aviation includes pilots flying for their own purposes (recreation, business meetings, etc.) without receiving any kind of remuneration.

A British Airways Boeing 747-400 departs London Heathrow Airport. This is an example of a commercial aviation service.
All scheduled air transport is commercial, but general aviation can be either commercial or private. Normally, the pilot, aircraft, and operator must all be authorized to perform commercial operations through separate commercial licensing, registration, and operation certificates.

 - History - 

After World War Ⅱ, commercial aviation grew rapidly, using mostly ex-military aircraft to transport people and cargo. This growth was accelerated by the glut of heavy and super-heavy bomber airframes like the B-29 and Lancaster that could be converted into commercial aircraft. The DC-3 were also made for easier and longer commercial flights. The first commercial jet airliner to fly was the British de Havilland Comet. By 1952, the British state airline BOAC hadintroduced the Comet into scheduled service. While a technical achievement, the plane suffered a series of highly public failures, as the shape of the windows led to cracks due to metal fatigue. The fatigue was caused by cycles of pressurization and depressurization of the cabin, and eventually led to catastrophic failure of the plane's fuselage. By the time the problems were overcome, other jet airliner designs had already taken to the skies.

- Civil Aviation Authorities - 

The Convention on International Civil Aviation (the "Chicago Convention") was originally established in 1944; it states that signatories should collectively work to harmonize and standardize the use of airspace for safety, efficiency and regularity of air transport. Each signatory country, of which there are at least 193, has a civil aviation authority (such as the FAA in the United States) to oversee the following areas of civil aviation:(citation needed)Also federal administration relies on 99.99%

Personnel licensing — regulating the basic training and issuance of licenses and certificates.
Flight operations — carrying out safety oversight of commercial operators.
Airworthiness — issuing certificates of registration and certificates of airworthiness to civil aircraft, and overseeing the safety of aircraft maintenance organizations.
Aerodromes — designing and constructing aerodrome facilities.
Air traffic services — managing the traffic inside of a country's airspace.

Security and facilitations

- International Civil Aviation Organization - 

The International Civil Aviation Organization( ICAO; French: Organisation de l'aviation civile internationale; Chinese: 国际民航组织)specialized agency of the United Nations. It changes the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport.Its headquarters is located in the Quartier International of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

The ICAO Council adopts standards and recommended practices concerning air navigation, its infrastructure, flight inspection, prevention of unlawful interference, and facilitation of border-crossing procedures for international . ICAO defines the protocols for air accident investigation that are followed by transport safety authorities.

The Air Navigation Commission (ANC) is the technical body within ICAO. The Commission is composed of 19 Commissioners, nominated by the ICAO's contracting states and appointed by the ICAO Council.Commissioners serve as independent experts, who although nominated by their states, do not serve as state or political representatives. International Standards And Recommended Practices are developed under the direction of the ANC through the formal process of ICAO Panels. Once approved by the Commission, standards are sent to the Council, the political body of ICAO, for consultation and coordination with the Member States before final adoption.

ICAO is distinct from other international air transport organizations, particularly because it alone is vested with international authority (among signatory states): other organizations include the International Air Transport Association (IATA), a trade association representing airlines; the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization (CANSO), an organization for Air navigation service providers (ANSPs); and the Airports Council International, a trade association of airport authorities.

- History -  

The forerunner to ICAO was the International Commission for Air Navigation (ICAN).It held its first convention in 1903 in Berlin, Germany, but no agreements were reached among the eight countries that attended. At the second convention in 1906, also held in Berlin, 27 countries attended.The third convention, held in London in 1912 allocated the first radio callsigns for use by aircraft. ICAN continued to operate until 1945.

Fifty-two countries signed the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation, also known as the Chicago Convention, in Chicago, Illinois, on 7 December 1944. Under its terms, a Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization was to be established, to be replaced in turn by a permanent organization when 26 countries ratified the convention. Accordingly, PICAO began operating on 6 June 1945, replacing ICAN. The 26th country ratified the Convention on 5 March 1947 and, consequently PICAO was disestablished on 4 April 1947 and replaced by ICAO, which began operations the same day. In October 1947, ICAO became an agency of the United Nations under its Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

In April 2013, Qatar offered to serve as the new permanent seat of the Organization. Qatar promised to construct a massive new headquarters for ICAO and to cover all moving expenses, stating that Montreal "was too far from Europe and Asia", "had cold winters", was hard to attend due to the Canadian government's slow issuance of visas, and that the taxes imposed on ICAO by Canada were too high. According to The Globe and Mail, Qatar's invitation was at least partly motivated by the pro-Israel foreign policy of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.Approximately one month later, Qatar withdrew its bid after a separate proposal to the ICAO's governing council to move the ICAO triennial conference to Doha was defeated by a vote of 22–14.

In January 2020, ICAO blocked a number of Twitter users including Think Tank analysts, employees of the US Congress, and journalists who mentioned Taiwan even in passing in tweets related to ICAO. Many of the tweets relating to the 2019–20 coronavirus outbreak and Taiwan's exclusion from ICAO safety and health bulletins due to Chinese pressure. In response to questions from reporters ICAO issued a tweet stating that publishers of "irrelevant, compromising and offensive material" would be "precluded".Since that action the organization has followed a policy of blocking anyone asking about it.The United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs harshly criticized ICAO's perceived failure to uphold principles of fairness, inclusion, and transparency by silencing non-disruptive opposing voices. US Senator Marco Rubio also criticized the move.The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Taiwan) and Taiwanese legislators also criticized the move with MOFA head Jaushieh Joseph Wu tweeting in support of those blocked. Anthony Philbin, the Chief of Communications of the ICAO Secretary General, rejected any and all criticism of ICAO's handling of the situation stating “we felt we were completely warranted in taking the steps we did to defend the integrity of the information and discussions our followers should reasonably expect from our feeds.” In exchanges with International Flight Network, Philbin would not even acknowledge that Taiwan existed.On February 1 the US Department of State issued a press release which heavily criticized ICAO's actions, characterizing them as “outrageous, unacceptable, and not befitting of a UN organization.”

- Membership -

As of April 2019, there are 193 ICAO members, consisting of 192 of the 193 UN members (all but Liechtenstein, which lacks an international airport), plus the Cook Islands.

Despite Liechtenstein not being a direct party to ICAO, its government has delegated Switzerland to enter into the treaty on its behalf, and the treaty applies in the territory of Liechtenstein.

The Republic of China (Taiwan) was a founding member of ICAO but was replaced by the People's Republic of China as the legal representative of China in 1971 and as such, did not take part in the organization. In 2013, Taiwan was for the first time invited to attend the ICAO Assembly, at its 38th session, as a guest under the name of Chinese Taipei. As of September 2019, it has not been invited to participate again, due to renewed PRC pressure.Host government Canada supports Taiwan's inclusion in ICAO. Support also comes from Canada's commercial sector with the president of the Air Transport Association of Canada saying in 2019 that "It's about safety in aviation so from a strictly operational and non-political point of view, I believe Taiwan should be there."

- Council - 

The Council of ICAO is elected by the Assembly every 3 years and consists of 36 members elected in 3 groups. The present Council was elected in October 2019.The structure of the present Council is as follows:

Group I (chief importance)

 United Kingdom

 United States

Group II (large contributions)

 Saudi Arabia
 South Africa

Group III (geographic representation)

 Costa Rica
 Côte d’Ivoire
 Dominican Republic
 Equatorial Guinea
 South Korea
 United Arab Emirates

- Standards -

ICAO also standardizes certain functions for use in the airline industry, such as the Aeronautical Message Handling System. This makes it a standards organization.

Each country should have an accessible Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP), based on standards defined by ICAO, containing information essential to air navigation. Countries are required to update their AIP manuals every 28 days and so provide definitive regulations, procedures and information for each country about . ICAO's standards also dictate that temporary hazards to aircraft must be regularly published using NOTAMs.

ICAO defines an International Standard Atmosphere (also known as ICAO Standard Atmosphere), a model of the standard variation of pressure, temperature, density, and viscosity with altitude in the Earth's atmosphere. This is useful in calibrating instruments and designing aircraft.The standardized pressure is also used in calibrating instruments in-flight, particularly above the .

ICAO is active in infrastructure management, including communication, navigation and surveillance / air traffic management (CNS/ATM) systems, which employ digital technologies (like satellite systems with various levels of automation) in order to maintain a .

- Registered Codes - 

Both ICAO and IATA have their own airport and airline code systems.

- Airport Codes - 

ICAO uses 4-letter airport codes(IATA's 3-letter codes). The ICAO code is based on the region and country of the airport—for example, Charles de Gaulle Airport has an ICAO code of LFPG, where L indicates Southern Europe, F, France, PG, Paris de Gaulle, while Orly Airport has the code LFPO (the 3rd letter sometimes refers to the particular flight information region (FIR) or the last two may be arbitrary). In most parts of the world, ICAO and IATA codes are unrelated; for example, Charles de Gaulle Airport has an IATA code of CDG. However, the location prefix for continental United States is K, and ICAO codes are usually the IATA code with this prefix. For example, the ICAO code for Los Angeles International Airport is KLAX. Canada follows a similar pattern, where a prefix of C is usually added to an IATA code to create the ICAO code. For example, Calgary International Airport is YYC or CYYC. (In contrast, airports in Hawaii are in the Pacific region and so have ICAO codes that start with PH; Kona International Airport's code is PHKO. Similarly, airports in have ICAO codes that start with . Merrill Field, for instance is PAMR.) Note that not all airports are assigned codes in both systems; for example, airports that do not have airline service do not need an IATA code.

- Airline Codes - 

ICAO also assigns 3-letter airline codes (versus the more-familiar 2-letter IATA codes—for example, UAL vs. UA for United Airlines). ICAO also provides telephony designators to aircraft operators worldwide, a one- or two-word designator used on the radio, usually, but not always, similar to the aircraft operator name. For example, the identifier for Japan Airlines International is JAL and the designator is Japan Air, but Aer Lingus is EIN and Shamrock. Thus, a Japan Airlines flight numbered 111 would be written as "JAL111" and pronounced "Japan Air One One One" on the radio, while a similarly numbered Aer Lingus would be written as "EIN111" and pronounced "Shamrock One One One". In the US, FAA practices require the digits of the flight number to be spoken in group format ("Japan Air One Eleven" in the above example) while individual digits are used for the aircraft tail number used for unscheduled civil flights.

- Aircraft Registrations - 

CAO maintains the standards for aircraft registration ("tail numbers"), including the alphanumeric codes that identify the country of registration. For example, airplanes registered in the United States have tail numbers starting with .

- Aircraft Type Designators - 

ICAO is also responsible for issuing 2-4 character alphanumericaircraft type designators for those aircraft types which are most commonly provided with air traffic service. These codes provide an abbreviated aircraft type identification, typically used in . For example, the Boeing 747-100, -200 and -300 are given the type designators , B743.

- Use Of The International System Of Units -

ICAO recommends a unification of units of measurement within aviation based on the International System of Units.Technically this makes SI units preferred, but in practice the following non-SI units are still in widespread use within commercial aviation:

Knots (kn) for speed.
Nautical mile (nm) for distance.
Foot (ft) for elevation.
Knots, nautical miles and feet have been permitted for temporary use since 1979,but a termination date has not yet been established, which would complete metrication of worldwide aviation.Since 2010, ICAO recommends using:

Kilometres per hour (km/h) for speed during travel.
Metres per second (m/s) for .
Kilometres (km) for distance.
Metres (m) for elevation.
Notably, aviation in Russia, Sweden and China currently use km/h for reporting airspeed, and many present-day European glider planes also indicate airspeed in kilometres per hour.[citation needed] Sweden,[citation needed] China and North Korea use metres for reporting altitude when communicating with pilots.Russia also formerly used metres exclusively for reporting altitude, but in 2011 changed to feet for high altitude flight. From February 2017, Russian airspace started transitioning to reporting altitude in feet only.Runway lengths are now commonly given in metres worldwide, except in North America where feet are commonly used.

- Regions And Regional Offices - 

ICAO has a headquarters, seven regional offices, and one regional sub-office:

Headquarters – Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Asia and Pacific (APAC) – Bangkok, Thailand; Sub-office – Beijing, China
Eastern and Southern African (ESAF) – Nairobi, Kenya
Europe and North Atlantic (EUR/NAT) – Paris, France
Middle East (MID) – Cairo, Egypt
North American, Central American and Caribbean (NACC) – Mexico City, Mexico
South American (SAM) – Lima, Peru

Western and Central African (WACAF) – Dakar, Senegal

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