Section 9. Other Displays
3-9-1. MINIMUM VECTORING ALTITUDE
CHARTS (MVAC) FOR FACILITIES
PROVIDING TERMINAL APPROACH
Air traffic managers shall determine the location and
the method for the display of vectoring altitude charts
to provide controllers with the minimum vectoring
altitudes as follows:
a. Where the system is adapted to display single
radar sensors, provide:
1. An MVAC that accommodates the largest
separation minima of all available sensors; or
2. Unique MVACs that accommodate the
appropriate separation minima of each available
b. Where the system is adapted to simultaneously
display multiple radar sensors, provide an MVAC
that accommodates the largest separation minima of
all available sensors.
c. Where the system is adapted to display multiple
radar sensors in a priority sequence (for example, sort
boxes), provide an MVAC that accommodates the
largest separation minima of adapted sensors.
Technical Operations Aviation System Standards, National Flight Procedures Group should be contacted if
assistance is required. (See FAAO 8260.3, United States
Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS)
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 5-5-4, Minima.
3-9-2. MINIMUM VECTORING ALTITUDE
CHARTS (MVAC) PREPARATION
Prepare a vectoring chart in accordance with the
criteria contained in FAA Order 8260.3, United
States Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures
a. MVACs must be developed and maintained
using the Sector Design and Analysis Tool (SDAT).
Facility Managers may request assistance in the
development and maintenance of their MVAC or
request SDAT user support by soliciting the Mission
Support Services Services, Geographic Services
Group. MVACs developed in SDAT properly apply
obstruction clearance criteria required by FAA Order
8260.3. SDAT completes FAA Form 7210-9 and
automatically creates and sends the necessary data
files to Mission Support Services, ATC Products
Group upon certification.
MVAs are established without considering the flight-checked radar coverage in the sector concerned. They are
based on obstruction clearance criteria and controlled
airspace only. It is the responsibility of the controller to
determine that a target return is adequate for radar
b. At a minimum, the airspace considered for
providing obstacle clearance information on MVA
charts must accommodate the facility's delegated
area of control as well as adjacent airspace where
control responsibility is assumed because of early
handoff or track initiation.
c. MVACs may be subdivided into sectors to gain
relief from obstacles that are clear of the area in which
flight is to be conducted. There is no prescribed limit
on the size, shape, or orientation of the sectors.
d. Depict the sectors in relationship to true north
from the antenna site.
e. Facility requests for reduced required obstruction clearance (ROC) in an area designated as
mountainous in accordance with 14 CFR, Part 95,
Subpart B, must conform to the following
1. Designated mountainous terrain must be
evaluated for precipitous terrain characteristics and
the associated negative effects. Facility managers
must use FAA Order 8260.3, paragraph 1720, as a
guide when considering ROC reductions in
designated mountainous areas. ROC reductions are
not authorized where negative effects of precipitous
terrain are documented or known having followed the
process contained in subparas e2 and 3 below. ROC
reductions within designated mountainous areas are
only authorized by complying with at least one of the
FAA Order 8260.3, Appendix 1, Glossary Term, Precipitous Terrain.
(a) Where lower altitudes are required to
achieve compatibility with terminal routes.
(b) To permit vectoring within the airport
radar traffic pattern area for either a departure
procedure, an instrument approach procedure, or a
visual approach to an airport. Air traffic managers
must define each airport's radar traffic pattern area for
which ROC reductions are sought. These areas must
include sufficient maneuvering airspace necessary
for ATC sequencing and spacing of traffic in the
vicinity of an airport.
2. Where mountainous terrain has been deemed
precipitous by the air traffic facility, each ROC
reduction request must include a query to an
independent data source, such as NASA's Aviation
Safety Reporting System to determine if any ground
proximity warnings have been reported in the subject
area. After completing the query, consider the
facility's history and experiences with turbulence at
the minimum altitude requested. Avoid ROC
reductions where reported ground proximity warnings relate to both existing MVA sector altitude ROC
reductions and rapid terrain elevation changes. ROC
reduction requests in these areas may require
additional evaluation and review.
FAA Order 8260.3, Appendix 1, Glossary Term, Precipitous Terrain.
3. The facility MVAC package must include a
detailed account of the steps taken by the facility to
determine if the sector will qualify for taking a ROC
reduction in the sector. This data will be reviewed by
the Service Center Operations Support Group (OSG)
and the ATC Products Group personnel for ROC
reduction approval. Service Center Operations
Support personnel must be the approving authority
for ROC reduction criteria compliance with
paragraph e1(a) and (b) above. Previously approved
reductions in ROC justifications must be resubmitted
for approval during a facility's recurring certification
Should a ROC reduction request be denied by Service
Center Operations Support personnel, the manager may
appeal the decision to Terminal Safety and Operations
Support for review.
4. In the advent of the development of an
automated precipitous terrain algorithm certified by
AFS, the automated method will be used in lieu of the
manual method described above.
5. Ensure MVA areas submitted for ROC
reductions do not cover large geographical areas that
include locations that would not, individually, meet
ROC reduction standards. In such cases, the ATC
Products Group may work with the Service Center
and the facility to design a sector that will pass the
approval process for a particular approach/departure
6. Whenever a ROC reduction is taken, the
rationale/justification for taking the ROC reduction
as defined in subpara e1 must be included in the
MVAC package by facility managers.
7. ROC reductions should only be requested
when there is a demonstrated operational need, and in
no event will requested reductions result in an MVA
that does not comply with 14 CFR 91.177.
f. An assumed adverse obstacle (AAO) additive is
required in areas not designated as mountainous
(ROC 1,000 feet) and in designated mountainous
terrain areas when any ROC reduction is requested.
g. Where an operational need is demonstrated and
documented, managers are permitted to round a
resulting MVA with an AAO additive to the nearest
100-foot increment, provided the minimum ROC is
maintained for other non-AAO obstacles. For
example, 3,049 feet rounds to 3,000 feet to support
glide slope intercept requirements.
h. Managers requesting to waive criteria contained in FAA Order 8260.3, must submit FAA Form
8260-1, Flight Procedures/Standards Waiver in
conjunction with the MVA project. This waiver form
will contain the criteria requested to be waived, with
the operational need fully explained, and examples of
how the facility will achieve an equivalent level of
safety, if approved. The package will be sent to the
ATC Products Group through the Service Center
OSG. Upon completion of the ATC Products Group
review, the package will be forwarded to the Flight
Procedure Implementation and Oversight Branch.
For the Flight Standards waiver process, facility
managers do not need to complete a Safety
Management System evaluation. An electronic copy
of the completed waiver package must be sent to
Terminal Safety and Operations Support.
i. MVAs must not be below the floor of controlled
airspace and should provide a 300-ft buffer above the
floor of controlled airspace. In some cases, this
application will result in an exceptionally high MVA
(for example, in areas where the floor of controlled
airspace is 14,500 MSL). When operationally
required to vector aircraft in underlying Class G
(uncontrolled) airspace, 2 MVAs may be established.
The primary MVA must be based on obstruction
clearance and the floor of controlled airspace. A
second, lower MVA that provides obstruction
clearance only may be established. The obstruction
clearance MVA must be uniquely identified; for
example, by an asterisk (*). Do not consider buffer
areas for controlled airspace evaluations.
j. If new charts prepared using SDAT create a
significant impact on a facility's operation, the
impact must be coordinated with ATO Terminal
Safety and Operations Support for joint coordination
with System Operations.
Significant impacts include changes to flight tracks for
turbine-powered aircraft, multiple losses of cardinal
altitudes, and/or reductions in airport arrival/departure
k. Air traffic managers may request to merge
adjoining, like altitude MVA sectors that resulted
from using differing design criteria provided the
merged sectors are identified in the remarks on FAA
Form 7210-9 and a statement is included with each
affected sector that the merged sectors are for Radar
Video Map (RVM) presentation only; for example,
Sector B, B1, and B2 are to be merged in SDAT shape
files for RVM presentation only.
l. Air traffic managers must submit the request for
MVACs to the appropriate Service Center OSG for
review. The Service Center OSG must then forward
the requested MVAC to the ATC Products Group for
m. Each request must indicate the MVAC was
accomplished in SDAT and stored in the SDAT
n. Each request must include the SDAT generated
Form 7210-9 with the manager's signature and point
of contact at the submitting facility. Form 7210-9
must also be an electronic copy with the manager's
signature, and imported into the MVA project file.
When applicable, each Form 7210-9 must include
explanations/ justifications for both ROC reduction
and AAO additive rounding requests. The MVA
request with Form 7210-9 may be electronically
forwarded to the OSG but must be followed with a
hard copy with original signatures. However, when
the capability of electronic signatures is developed
within SDAT, Form 7210-9 will be transmitted
electronically between the facility, Service Center,
and ATC Products Group in lieu of the paper process.
SDAT will automatically store the approved MVAC
package in the National Airspace System Resource
o. For those facilities that use the SDAT program
office for the development and maintenance of their
MVACs, the SDAT program office personnel must be
notified to complete the final submission step of the
project within the repository when sending the
MVAC request to the OSG.
p. When more than one chart is used, prepare
those charts with the oldest review/certification
date(s) first to help avoid lapses in annual
q. New charts that result in significant operational
impacts must not be implemented by air traffic
managers until associated changes to facility
directives, letters of agreement, and controller
training are completed within a period not to exceed
6-months from new chart certification.
r. Once a chart without significant operational
impacts has been approved, it must be implemented
as soon as possible. MVAC installations projected to
be more than 60 days from date of approval must be
coordinated with and approved by,the Service Center
s. Air traffic managers must ensure that MVACs
are periodically reviewed for chart currency and
simplicity and forwarded for certification to the ATC
Products Group at least once every 2 years. Charts
must be revised immediately when changes affecting
3-9-3. ALTITUDE ASSIGNMENTS TO
S/VFR AND VFR AIRCRAFT
Where procedures require altitude assignments to
S/VFR and VFR aircraft less than the established IFR
altitude or MVA, facility air traffic managers shall
determine the need and the method for displaying the
appropriate minimum altitude information.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 7-5-4, Altitude Assignment.
FAAO JO 7110.65, Para 7-8-5, Altitude Assignments.
3-9-4. EMERGENCY OBSTRUCTION
VIDEO MAP (EOVM)
a. An EOVM shall be established at all terminal
radar facilities that have radar coverage in designated
mountainous areas and an available channel in their
video mappers. This map is intended to facilitate
advisory service to an aircraft in an emergency
situation wherein an appropriate terrain/obstacle
clearance minimum altitude cannot be maintained.
(See FIG 3-9-1.)
1. Designated mountainous areas are identified in
14 CFR Part 95, Subpart B.
2. Appropriate terrain/obstacle clearance minimum
altitudes may be defined as MIA, MEA, Minimum
Obstruction Clearance Altitude (MOCA), or MVA.
b. Alternatives, such as combining existing maps,
eliminating a lower priority map or, as a least
desirable alternative, merging the EOVM with the
MVA map, shall be considered when necessary to
accommodate the EOVM.
c. EOVM Use: The EOVM shall be used and the
advisory service provided only when a pilot has
declared an emergency or a controller determines that
an emergency condition exists or is imminent
because of the inability of an aircraft to maintain the
appropriate terrain/obstacle clearance minimum
d. EOVM Design:
1. The basic design of the EOVM shall
incorporate the following minimum features:
(a) Base contour lines of the mountains with
the highest peak elevation of each depicted mountain
plus 200 feet for natural low obstacle growth.
(b) Highest elevations of adjacent topography; e.g., valleys, canyons, plateaus, flatland, etc.,
plus 200 feet, or water.
(c) Prominent man-made obstacles; e.g.,
antennas, power plant chimneys, tall towers, etc., and
(d) Satellite airports and other airports which
could serve in an emergency.
(e) MVA if the EOVM must be merged with
the MVA map for the former to be accommodated.
(f) Other information deemed essential by the
To avoid clutter and facilitate maintenance, information
depicted on the EOVM should be restricted to only that
which is absolutely essential.
2. All elevations identified on the EOVM shall
be rounded up to the next 100-foot increment and
expressed as MSL altitudes.
To avoid unnecessary map clutter, the last two digits are
2=200, 57=5700, 90=9000, 132=13200
e. EOVM Production: The preparation and
procurement of the EOVM shall be accomplished in
accordance with FAAO 7910.1, Aeronautical Video
f. EOVM Verification: The original EOVM
procurement package and any subsequent changes
shall be checked for adequacy and then coordinated
with the Terminal Procedures and Charting Group to
verify the accuracy of its information. Annually, the
EOVM shall be reviewed for adequacy and
recoordinated with the Mission Support Services,
Terminal Procedures and Charting Group for
3-9-5. ESTABLISHING DIVERSE VECTOR
a. DVAs may be established at the request of the
ATM and coordinated jointly with the appropriate
Service Area OSG and Mission Support Services,
Terminal Procedures and Charting Group for
candidate airports within the facility's area of
jurisdiction. DVAs should be considered when an
obstacle(s) penetrates the airport's diverse departure
obstacle clearance surface (OCS). The OCS is a 40:1
surface and is intended to protect the minimum climb
gradient. If there are no obstacle penetrations of this
surface, then standard takeoff minimums apply,
obstacle clearance requirements are satisfied and free
vectoring is permitted below the MVA. When the
OCS is penetrated, the Terminal Procedures and
Charting Group procedural designer will develop an
obstacle departure procedure (ODP). An ODP may
consist of obstacle notes, non-standard takeoff
minimums, a specified departure route, a steeper than
normal climb gradient, or any combination thereof.
If an ODP is developed for a runway, it is a candidate
for a DVA. The ATM should consider whether a DVA
is desired and then consider if development would
provide operational benefits exceeding existing
practices. This is done after determining that
sufficient radar coverage exists for any given airport
with a published instrument approach. When
established, reduced separation from obstacles, as
provided for in TERPS diverse departure criteria, will
be used to radar vector departing IFR aircraft below
the MVA. To assist in determining if obstacles
penetrate the 40:1 surface, ATMs may request the
Terminal Procedures and Charting Group provide
them with a graphic depiction of any departure
penetrations in addition to completing the following
1. If the location is listed in the Terminal
Procedure Publication (TPP) index, check the
take-off minimums and (Obstacle) Departure
Procedures in section C of the TPP for the DVA
runway. If nothing is listed, or only obstacle notes
appear, then a DVA is not necessary. If a DP appears,
development of a DVA becomes an option.
2. If the location is not listed, query the NFDC
Web site at http://nfdc.faa.gov, and select the Special
Procedures link to determine if a “special” instrument
approach procedure exists at that airport/heliport. If
there is a special procedure, the Regional Flight
Standards All Weather Office (AWO) can supply
FAA Form 8260-15A for ODP information when
requested by the facility.
If the TPP or AWO indicates IFR departures N/A for any
given runway, then a DVA is not authorized.
3. If the ATM elects to request a DVA, use the
sample memorandum below as a guide (see FIG
3-9-2). Specify if the request is to establish, modify,
or cancel a DVA. If modifying or canceling a DVA,
attach the memorandum that authorizes the current
DVA. The DVA request must include the following:
(a) Airport identifier.
(b) Desired DVA runway(s).
(c) Requested DVA method. Specify a range
of operational headings by starting from the extreme
left heading proceeding clockwise (CW) to the
extreme right heading as viewed from the departure
runway in the direction of departure (for example,
Runway 36, 330 CW 030), or isolate a penetrating
obstacle(s) by identifying that obstacle(s) either by
DOF number or range/bearing from airport.
(d) Maximum Extent (Distance) from Departure Runway.
(e) Radar Type/Beacon Type. Provide whether the facility has an ASR-9 with Mode S beacon
(f) Facility Hours of Operation.
Sample DVA Memo
b. Forward DVA requests to the Terminal
Procedures and Charting Group through the
appropriate Service Area OSG Manager.
c. When a DVA is established, it will be
documented and provided to the facility by the
Terminal Procedures and Charting Group on FAA
Form 8260-15D, Diverse Vector Area (DVA). The
ATM must then prepare a facility directive describing
procedures for radar vectoring IFR departures below
the MVA including:
1. Textual or graphical description of the limits
of each airport's DVA for each runway end.
2. Where required, specific radar routes,
depicted on the radar display, where radar vectors are
provided to aircraft below the MVA.
3. Free vectoring areas, in which random
vectoring may be accomplished below the MVA.
d. IFR aircraft climbing within a DVA must not be
assigned an altitude restriction below the MVA.
When leaving the confines of the DVA, ensure the
aircraft reaches the MVA or has reported leaving the
altitude of the obstacle(s) for which the MVA was
created, climbing to an altitude at least 1,000 feet
above the obstacle.
e. Headings must not be assigned beyond those
authorized by the DVA prior to reaching the MVA.
f. Ensure all controllers are familiar with the
provisions of the facility directive before vectoring
aircraft in accordance with DVA procedures.