Airspace Design

The Flight Procedures Section of the ATM Planning Department, in conjunction with the Operational Planning Department, has the infrastructure, equipment and expertise to provide airspace and route design and verification services. This service is conducted in accordance with ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs), taking customer requirements into consideration.


These same departments have the capabilities to design and review all airspace types as defined by ICAO. These include, but are not limited to, Control Zones, Terminal Manoeuvring Areas and Flight Information Regions. Furthermore, air routes based on conventional navigation aids as well as RNP-restricted routes can be designed to client requirements.

Aeronautical Software Development is utilised for the development (design and verification) of all airspace and routes. In addition to topographical data, WGS-84 survey data (airport and obstacle), AIP, AIP supplement and NOTAM data is incorporated into the design and verification of airspace and routes.

All processes are quality controlled to ensure flight safety, and quality assured in accordance with ISO 9001 standards.


The ATM Planning Department has been designing and maintaining air routes and airspace for South Africa since the inception of ATNS in 1994. Furthermore, extensive design work has been done for clients external to South Africa on a contractual basis. Some of these clients include:

  • Cape Verde
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Namibia
  • Swaziland
  • United Nations
  • St Helena Airspace
  • ICAO Route Structure