Guidance for Part 91 approvals

Part 91 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR) General Flight Rules is a consolidated regulatory set.

It provides a streamlined approval mechanism for those previously done under numerous sets of Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR) and Civil Aviation Orders (CAO). These approvals are for operations that are not generally approved in the general flight rules.

See Part 91 General Operating and Flight Rules for more information and resources that support the application information.

Air display approval

If you are planning a flying display that will be advertised and open to the public, you will need approval from us.

You do not need approval for events that do not invite the general public to attend, such as a local aero club fly-in.

When assessing your application, we will consider the safety of pilots and spectators.

An air display can be:

  • multiple aircraft display
  • single aircraft display
  • a flypast
  • a fly-in.

See the Air Display Administration and Procedures Manual for detailed definitions.

Details required for an application

Details on how to apply for an air display approval are outlined in the Air Display Administration and Procedures Manual.

Your application must include:

  • detailed display instructions
  • a detailed program of events
  • display pilot approvals and details
  • where the display will be held
  • a risk assessment
  • your emergency response plan.

Performance-based navigation (PBN)

Advances in navigation technology and performance have enabled changes in airspace design, separation minima, route spacing, airport access, instrument procedure design and air traffic management. These changes form a significant part of the overall modernisation of Australia's airspace system and deliver improvements in safety and operational efficiency.

The transition in Australia away from navigation reliant on ground-based navaids, such as VHF omnidirectional range (VOR) and non-directional beacon (NDB), to area navigation using the ICAO performance-based navigation (PBN) framework has been a key enabler of this modernisation.

Please review Advisory Circular-91-05 Performance Based Navigation for more information, including the approval process.

Navigation authorisations required

We are only required to issue specific approval for operations under the Required Navigation Performance Authorisation Required (RNP-AR) navigation specifications, outlined in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) RNP-AR Procedure Design Manual.

Operator seeking the following navigation authorisations need approval from us:

  • RNP AR APCH
  • RNP AR DEP

Low visibility operations

In Australia, take-off and landing minima are established by Part 91.D.5 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR). These regulations permit us to determine the meteorological minima for landing or take-off.

The Part 91 Manual of Standards (MOS) sets out the various minima. These minima are then reflected in the Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP).

The minima we set are intended for broad use by pilots and aircraft operators without the need for specific approval. These ‘standard’ minima are currently known as:

  • landing: not less than standard precision approach category I (CAT I) minima (200 ft DH, 550 m RVR/800 m visibility)
  • take-off: visibility not less than 550 m.

For operators wishing to conduct operations with lower minima (for example, low visibility operations [LVO]), we may grant approval under regulation 91.045 of CASR for the provisions applicable to 91.445. This is consistent with international practice, which requires operators to have specific approval to conduct:

  • instrument approaches with minima less than CAT I, and
  • low-visibility take-offs.

We will approve Australian and foreign-registered aircraft to conduct LVOs within Australia by:

  • granting an approval under regulation 91.045, and
  • inclusion of the approval on the AOC OPS Spec.

Note: Regulation 91.020 specifies that Part 91 of CASR does not apply to certain foreign-registered aircraft. We provide more guidance for foreign operators.

Australian operators intending to conduct LVO in another country will need the following:

  • A copy of the Ops Spec carried on board, showing the LVO specific approval issued by us.
  • Where applicable, an approval from the applicable foreign regulatory authority to conduct the relevant LVO, including:
    • For landing operations, a statement confirming the aerodrome and runway terrain details and charts, including the calculations used to determine the applicable minima.
    • If issued, a copy of the operations specification (OPS SPEC), or equivalent approval, from the foreign National Aviation Authority (NAA) for LVO.

Generalist approvals under Part 91

The application form can be used for additional operations approvals required under Part 91. These include approval to:

  • pick up or set down people or things during flight
  • carry persons on or in that part of the aircraft or thing during flight
  • fly in formation at night
  • fly in formation in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC)
  • tow a thing during flight
  • fly below minimum height rules
  • conduct a VFR flight in Class A Airspace
  • lower performance category at an aerodrome
  • carry cargo -obstruction, or restricted access to emergency exit
  • simulate engine failure in multi engine aeroplane – certificated to carry more than 9 passengers but not exceeding 19– no simulator in Australia
  • simulate engine failure in multi engine aeroplane – certificated to carry more than 19 passengers – no simulator in Australia or a recognised National Aviation Authority in a foreign country for aeroplane type.
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