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Transition to ICAO NOTAM format and new NOTAM Series

Changes coming October 10, 2019

On October 10, 2019, NAV CANADA will transition to the ICAO NOTAM format. As a result, NAV CANADA will distribute all Canadian domestic NOTAM using the ICAO format under new NOTAM Series.

At the same time, NOTAMs obtained directly from a NAV CANADA website will need to be accessed through Collaborative Flight Planning Services (CFPS) instead of the Aviation Weather Web Site (AWWS) where they are currently found.

Runway Surface Condition (RSC) reports will remain unchanged – and will continue to be available on AWWS - until they are transitioned to the ICAO format in the fall of 2020.

Retrieving NOTAMs

A key difference between the ICAO NOTAM format and the previous approach is that NOTAMs will now be geographically-referenced, rather than based on NOTAM Files. Georeferencing is a process that determines a NOTAM’s impacted location based on geographic coordinates, and will be done for National, FIR and Aerodrome NOTAMs.

Starting mid-September, users will be able to use CFPS to access geographically-tagged NOTAMs in the current Canadian Domestic format. The NOTAM retrieval tool will be placed on a section of CFPS – a new tab called “Weather” – which will not require a login. Users will still need a CFPS account in order to file flight plans online.

Using CFPS, users will be able to search for NOTAMs by entering an Aerodrome ID, NAVAID, FIR, or geographic coordinates, with an optional desired radius around these points of interest. They will also be able to enter a flight route and receive all NOTAMs which geographically intersect the route. NOTAMs for an aerodrome will no longer be associated to another aerodrome’s NOTAM File, and the concept of a NOTAM File will cease to exist.

As of October 10, 2019, NOTAMs will only be available on CFPS, and the functionality will be removed from AWWS. At the same time, NOTAMs will switch to the ICAO format, whether they are accessed through CFPS or a third-party application.

More detailed retrieval guidelines will be provided closer to the transition date.​

The ICAO NOTAM format

The adoption of the ICAO NOTAM format – already used by most countries - will ensure compliance with international standards and will eliminate the need for pilots who fly international routes to be familiar with more than one NOTAM format. It will also pave the way for more advanced filtering functionality, reducing NOTAM clutter by help pilots access just the NOTAMs pertinent to their flight.

The format divides a NOTAM’s content into eight defined sections which are further explained in the reference materials listed below.

Summary of NOTAM changes timing

​​​​ Prior to mid-September​ Mid-September to October 9, 2019​ Starting October 10, 2019​
​NOTAM retrieval tool ​AWWS (or 3rd party tool) ​AWWS or CFPS
(or 3rd party tool)
(or 3rd party tool)
​NOTAM format ​Canadian ​Domestic ​Canadian Domestic ​ICAO
​NOTAM search approach ​Input ​Aerodrome ID(s) to retrieve selected NOTAM Files ​AWWS – no change

CFPS – input point(s) of interest or flight route to retrieve NOTAMs within defined geographic area
​Input point(s) of interest or flight route to retrieve NOTAMs within defined geographic area

For more information relating to the transition to ICAO NOTAM format, visit the links below, or contact icaonotam@navcanada.ca​.