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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge

Aeronautical Charts

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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge



Table of Contents

Chapter 1, Introduction To Flying
Chapter 2, Aircraft Structure
Chapter 3, Principles of Flight
Chapter 4, Aerodynamics of Flight
Chapter 5, Flight Controls
Chapter 6, Aircraft Systems
Chapter 7, Flight Instruments
Chapter 8, Flight Manuals and Other Documents
Chapter 9, Weight and Balance
Chapter 10, Aircraft Performance
Chapter 11, Weather Theory
Chapter 12, Aviation Weather Services
Chapter 13, Airport Operation
Chapter 14, Airspace
Chapter 15, Navigation
Chapter 16, Aeromedical Factors
Chapter 17, Aeronautical Decision Making




Sectional chart and legend.
Figure 15-1. Sectional chart and legend.

Aeronautical Charts

An aeronautical chart is the road map for a pilot flying under
VFR. The chart provides information which allows pilots
to track their position and provides available information
which enhances safety. The three aeronautical charts used
by VFR pilots are:
• Sectional
• VFR Terminal Area
• World Aeronautical

A free catalog listing aeronautical charts and related
publications including prices and instructions for ordering
is available at the National Aeronautical Charting Group
(NACG) web site: www.naco.faa.gov.

Sectional Charts
Sectional charts are the most common charts used by pilots
today. The charts have a scale of 1:500,000 (1 inch = 6.86
nautical miles (NM) or approximately 8 statute miles (SM))
which allows for more detailed information to be included
on the chart.

The charts provide an abundance of information, including
airport data, navigational aids, airspace, and topography.
Figure 15-1 is an excerpt from the legend of a sectional
chart. By referring to the chart legend, a pilot can interpret
most of the information on the chart. A pilot should also
check the chart for other legend information, which includes
air traffic control (ATC) frequencies and information on
airspace. These charts are revised semiannually except for
some areas outside the conterminous United States where
they are revised annually.

VFR Terminal Area Charts
VFR terminal area charts are helpful when flying in or near
Class B airspace. They have a scale of 1:250,000 (1 inch
= 3.43 NM or approximately 4 SM). These charts provide
a more detailed display of topographical information and
are revised semiannually, except for several Alaskan and
Caribbean charts. [Figure 15-2]

World Aeronautical Charts
World aeronautical charts are designed to provide a standard
series of aeronautical charts, covering land areas of the
world, at a size and scale convenient for navigation by
moderate speed aircraft. They are produced at a scale of
1:1,000,000 (1 inch = 13.7 NM or approximately 16 SM).
These charts are similar to sectional charts and the symbols
are the same except there is less detail due to the smaller
scale. [Figure 15-3]

These charts are revised annually except several Alaskan
charts and the Mexican/Caribbean charts which are revised
every 2 years.