I think "HAND OVER" is a whole process of transfering radar idenrification between 2 controllers, and "HAND OFF" is a term used by the transfering controller(not receiving controller) when doing HAND OVER.

Am I right?


1 Answer 1


In the U.S. Air Traffic Controllers initiate handoffs and receive handoffs. Perhaps the term "hand over" is general term applied to the process of making/receiving a "handoff."

Here is the definition of "Handoff" from the Pilot/Controller's Glossary in the FAA JO Order 7110.65W, Air traffic Controller's handbook:

HANDOFF − An action taken to transfer the radar identification of an aircraft from one controller to another if the aircraft will enter the receiving controller’s airspace and radio communications with the aircraft will be transferred.

I am unable to find the term "Hand Over" in the 7110.65W.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "Hand over" might refer to the process of transferring control of an entire control position to a fresh controller—what the FAA calls a "position relief briefing"—rather than transfer (between two control positions) of radar identification of a single target. I seem to recall hearing the term "hand over" used in that context in a documentary about NATS (UK). $\endgroup$
    – randomhead
    May 2, 2022 at 23:51

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