To use the equipment suffix "G", does the GPS have to be certified for IFR flight?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ What equipment suffix are you referring to? $\endgroup$ Apr 5, 2019 at 17:17
  • $\begingroup$ See list of FAA equipment codes here or here $\endgroup$
    – StephenS
    Apr 5, 2019 at 18:15
  • $\begingroup$ @selectstriker2 /G is the equipment suffix used in FAA IFR flight plans for GNSS plus mode C $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Apr 5, 2019 at 18:17
  • $\begingroup$ In the US if you are just getting flight following, you can use the /G suffix when making your request to ATC. However, in 20 years of using flight following on almost every flight, I have never had ATC give me anything but a heading to follow so it really doesn’t matter what you use. $\endgroup$
    – JScarry
    Apr 5, 2019 at 19:14
  • $\begingroup$ @JScarry That's interesting, why do you include equipment details in a fight following request? $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Apr 5, 2019 at 19:30

1 Answer 1


Yes, using GPS for IFR requires a certified unit. The AIM 1-1-17(b)(2) says (emphasis mine):

Authorization to conduct any GPS operation under IFR requires:

(1) GPS navigation equipment used for IFR operations must be approved in accordance with the requirements specified in Technical Standard Order (TSO) TSO-C129(), TSO-C196(), TSO-C145(), or TSO-C146(), and the installation must be done in accordance with Advisory Circular AC 20-138, Airworthiness Approval of Positioning and Navigation Systems. Equipment approved in accordance with TSO-C115a does not meet the requirements of TSO-C129. Visual flight rules (VFR) and hand-held GPS systems are not authorized for IFR navigation, instrument approaches, or as a principal instrument flight reference.


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