Wireless Telegraphy Act Licences and ANO Approvals

This section provides information on the arrangments for the issue of WT Act licences for aeronautical radio equipment and the associated ANO approval process.

Wireless Telegraphy (WT) Act Licences

Under the Wireless Telegraphy (WT) Act 2006 it is an offence to install or use radio transmitting equipment without a licence. The Office of Communications (Ofcom) is responsible for managing that part of the radio spectrum used for civil purposes in the UK as set out in the Communications Act 2003 and has contracted the CAA's Safety and Airspace Regulation Group (SARG) to administer WT Act radio licences for aircraft, aeronautical ground stations and navigation aids on their behalf.

Further information can be found on the Ofcom website and on the CAA's Radio Licensing pages.

In order to be eligible for WT Act Aeronautical Radio Licensing, the VHF Aeronautical Radio Equipment should comply with the Ofcom UK Interface Requirement 2052 ‘Ground based VHF radio equipment for analogue voice and ACARS data link in the aeronautical mobile (R) service’ and the NDB should comply with the Ofcom UK Interface Requirement 2058 ‘Ground based non directional radio beacons (NDB) at aeronautical stations of the aeronautical radionavigation service’ which can be found on the Ofcom website.

Air Navigation Order (ANO) Approvals

Aeronautical Radio Stations and Offshore Non-Directional Radio Beacons (NDBs)

The Air Traffic Standards Division's CNS Standards section is responsible for ensuring the safe operation of Aeronautical Radio Equipment and Navigation Aids. CNS Standards also approves the installation and operation of Offshore Aeronautical (Ground) Stations and Non-Directional Radio Beacons (NDBs) according to Article 205 of the Air Navigation Order (ANO).

The process for the consideration of an application for ANO Approval includes the following activities where relevant:

  • The details on the application will be checked to ensure that the intended purpose of use is appropriate for the aeronautical radio spectrum and that there are no suitable alternatives.  The nature and purpose of the voice communications will be assessed to ensure that they are permitted and are excluded from the restrictions on the use of the aeronautical mobile service.
  • The proposed callsign(s) for voice communications on the application will be checked to ensure they are appropriate and do not conflict with callsigns or callsign suffices reserved for use by other Air Traffic Services, Search and Rescue or other such communications.  An alternative to the proposed callsign may be suggested to the applicant.  Guidance on the formation of radio telephony callsigns can be found in the following document.
  • The details of the manufacturer and model of the VHF radio equipment and/or NDB will be checked to ensure that the radio equipment complies with the R&TTE Directive 1999/5/EC or, for legacy radio equipment predating this legislation, that it is compliant with the relevant ICAO SARPs, ITU Radio Regulations or other standards.

All enquiries about ANO Approval applications for Offshore Communication Service (OCS) Aeronautical Radio Stations and Non-Directional Radio Beacons (NDBs), Operational Control (OPC), Data Link and Recreational Aviation Aeronautical Radio Stations should be sent to CNS Standards.

Channels Islands and the Isle of Man

Whilst Aeronautical Radio Stations located in the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are required to hold Wireless Telegraphy Act Licences issued by the CAA on behalf of Ofcom, SRG does not issue ANO Article 205 Approvals as the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man have their own Air Navigation Order and/or separate arrangements for the approval of aeronautical radio stations.

Application Form for WT Act Licences and ANO Approval

Form SRG 1417 Application to Establish or Change an Aeronautical Ground Radio Station may be used to apply for both the WT Act Licence and ANO Approval.