FAA Name Change Signifies a Bigger Mission for NOTAMs

Alteration gives more information and a modern meaning for a common aviation abbreviation.

On Thursday, the meaning of the acronym NOTAM changed from “Notice to Airmen” to “Notice to Air Missions.” 

According to the 176-page rule from the FAA, the name change complies with the Federal Women’s Program (FWP) suggestions, as the term Notice to Air Missions is “inclusive of all aviators and missions.” 

In addition to the gender neutrality imparted by the new name, Notice to Air Missions also addresses the flight of free balloons and small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) colloquially known as “drones,” neither of which have a human onboard. Therefore, Notice to Air Missions is a more correct term.

Other NOTAM Changes

Other changes to NOTAMs were made to provide more precise language and to ensure compliance with ICAO standards and contractions including Changes to Field Conditions (FICON), and updated requirements for Runway Condition Codes (RwyCCs) NOTAMs, to remove the braking action report of “good” as a NOTAM criteria. 

Also, NOTAM procedures now include more detail for describing reduced usage of runway alignment lights which until now were referred to as “unserviceable.”

The update removes the reference to the 28-day publication cycle for International and Domestic Notices as well.

Other changes include:

  • Updating the role and responsibilities of the United States NOTAM office
  • Setting the same NOTAM criteria for both the automated surface observing system (ASOS) and the federal automated weather observation system (AWOS), regardless of who maintains them.


New to Flying?


Already have an account?