Office of Airspace Regulation

We regulate Australia’s airspace representing 11% of the world’s airspace. We do this through our Office of Airspace Regulation (OAR).

The OAR administers the Australian airspace architecture under the:

Airspace administration

The administration of airspace includes managing the establishment, amendment, or disestablishment of:

  • various classes of airspace (A to G)
  • air routes
  • prohibited, restricted and danger (PRD) areas.

All of these have their own associated conditions and rules. There are special conditions and rules of use for restricted and danger areas that include extraterritorial airspace.

Find more about extraterritorial airspace.

The various classes of airspace and PRD areas have defined volumes and boundaries that can change. Air routes are not volumes of airspace and their locations are defined by co-ordinates.

Aircraft operations within airspace

We aim to make sure the Australian administered airspace is fit-for-purpose. This considers the specifications in the Australian Airspace Policy Statement (AAPS). This doesn't include:

  • controlling aircraft operations within the airspace
  • managing ground-based activities that may affect aircraft operations and flight paths.

The responsibility for controlling aircraft operations generally falls with:

  • aircraft operators
  • air navigation service providers.

Airspace changes

We manage proposed changes to the Australian airspace architecture. We do this through the airspace change process. This includes:

  • emergencies
  • temporary activities such as military training exercises and air shows
  • permanent airspace changes.

Airspace reviews

We review airspace to ensure:

  • aircraft operations are safe
  • airspace architecture is fit-for-purpose.

An airspace change proposal or an aeronautical study usually triggers the review.

Read our latest airspace reviews.

OAR strategic work plans

The OAR Strategic work plan details the next 5 years of our:

  • priorities
  • processes
  • strategies.

This is to ensure that Australian airspace complies with the legislation and regulations.

Last updated:
9 Jan 2024
Online version available at:
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