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Below are three NAVAID chart symbols. There is almost no explanation on the aeronautical chart user's guide. It even says that a navaid with an FSS will be shaded but the third box has an FSS and it isn't shaded!

I would like to understand what everything on each of these boxes stands for.

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  • $\begingroup$ its worth noting that LAA were transitioned to "remote airport advisories" when Lockheed took the FSS contract and consolidated 58 FSS into 5. They are now proposing to eliminate RAAs federalregister.gov/articles/2015/06/30/2015-15949/… $\endgroup$ – rbp Mar 4 '16 at 18:10
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The shadow in the NAVAID box indicates that the NAVAID and FSS have the same name, as in your top image. If they are different, the FSS name is given in brackets below the NAVAID box, as in your bottom image. If the FSS is not available, a thin line box is used for NAVAID (without brackets at the bottom), as in the middle figure.

FAA Aeronautical Chart User's guide should help you understand it better.

Chart symbols

Image from FAA Aeronautical Chart User's guide

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Your top example would have an FSS with the same name as the Navaid, while your bottom example would have an FSS (with a different name) that controls that Navaid -- i.e. can use it to receive & transmit, even though it isn't co-located. The presence of either the shadow OR the FSS name (different from the Navaid's name) in brackets underneath will tell you that there is the ability to contact an FSS at that Navaid; without the shadow & with the FSS name underneath, the FSS is physically located elsewhere. This link (select the "IFR Symbols" tab) has the following graphic:

FAA IFR Chart Legend

In this example (halfway down), the Jonesboro FSS controls the Pine Bluff VOR and can use 122.6 to talk to aircraft close to Pine Bluff. In the example directly above that one, there is a remote transmitter (with no associated Navaid) that Jonesboro FSS can use to talk to aircraft on 122.55. Either way, you're talking to Jonesboro FSS (as there is no "Pine Bluff FSS").

In the top example in that graphic, you'd be able to talk to Wichita FSS on 122.65 using an antenna approximately at the ICT VOR -- FSS name matches the Navaid name.

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  • $\begingroup$ In the example, why does the El Dorado ELD have a 123.6 and a 122.65? Why are there two frequencies? Can you talk to the FSS on both frequencies? $\endgroup$ – jskypilot Mar 4 '16 at 15:59
  • $\begingroup$ @jskypilot Yes, you can. Looks like 123.6 is a "local airport advisory" frequency, so they can give you winds & such for the local field. The other frequency is for traffic passing by that's getting updates on things other than the local airport itself. They probably use separate frequencies to avoid congestion. I think (others can chime in) that the "local airport advisory" frequency is essentially CTAF with the FSS there to provide conditions (but not control the traffic). Better to separate out "update weather for my destination" radio traffic from the calls by pilots in the pattern. $\endgroup$ – Ralph J Mar 4 '16 at 16:07

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