Excerpt from Annex 14-Aerodromes

"1.6.1 An Aerodrome Reference Code - code number and letter - which is selected for aerodrome planning purposes shall be determined in accordance with the characteristics of the aeroplane for which and aerodrome facility is intended."

Is the aerodrome reference code used only for aerodrome planning purposes and once the aerodrome has been built, aerodrome reference code is not used ?.

for A320/A321 - Aerodrome reference code is 3C/4C, are these codes determined only to plan an aerodrome and not used in day-to-day operations ?.


1 Answer 1


The code determines the capability of the aerodrome in term of aircraft size. Therefore operators must check they land their aircraft on compatible aerodromes. This is done when opening new lines or adding new aircraft to an existing line.

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The information is provided for the aerodrome and the aircraft and publicly available. In the table above you see also other compatibility information:

  • Approach category
  • RFF and ARFF (rescue and fire firefighting)

You can read more in:

From CASA document:

When introducing new aircraft types or subtypes to an aerodrome the following should occur:

− the airline/aircraft operator submits a request to the aerodrome operator to operate a new type of aircraft to the aerodrome.

− the aerodrome operator should do a compatibility study to determine if the new aircraft type can be accommodated. This will include provision for access to the movement areas, and if necessary, consider the feasibility and economic viability of upgrading the aerodrome infrastructure to meet the requirement of the new aircraft type.

− both the aerodrome operator and aircraft operator should discuss the aerodrome operator's assessment. The assessment should identify:

  • likely resultant consequences that may evolve during operation of the new aircraft type
  • whether the aerodrome will be able to accommodate the aircraft size, width and operational characteristics
  • the conditions under which it will operate safely.

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