References Cited in the PSTAR Study Guide

A.I.P. Canada

The Aeronautical Information Publication or "A.I.P." is a white plastic ring-binder of looseleaf pages.  It contains excerpts from and explanations of air law, recommended procedures, and all manner of useful data for pilots. It is updated quarterly through replacement pages sent to every licenced pilot in Canada whose medical is still valid. As a student pilot, you don't yet have an A.I.P., but your flying school is required to have an office copy for you to use.

Here is how to look up references in the A.I.P. The pages are divided by index tabs into several sections, labelled GEN for general, AGA for aerodromes, COM for communications, and so on. Within the sections, the chapters, paragraphs and subparagraphs are numbered. A reference such as AIP-RAC 4.5.3 instructs you to go to the RAC tab of the AIP, and then in chapter 4, find paragraph 5, then subparagraph 3. That happens to be on page 4-18 of the RAC section, but the page numbers are only important when you are updating your A.I.P., not when looking things up in it. AIP-RAC 4.5.3 deals with Helicopter Operations.

The AIP can be downloaded as a PDF from the Transport Canada website. Transport Canada is planning to phase out the AIP in April 2005 and replace it with a document called the TC AIM (Transport Canada Airman's Information Manual). This will have to result in amendments to the PSTAR, and to this website.

Your own paper A.I.P will be mailed to you at the time of the first quarterly update following processing of your private licence. Theoretically that could be as little as two weeks after receiving your private licence, but in practice it can take over six months.  If you want one to study from -- and it is a useful document-- you can order a copy of the A.I.P. from the government publisher. If that link doesn't work, find the AIP by its publication number: TP2300E.

CARs and CARs Standards

The Canadian Aviation Regulations, known as the CARs, are the laws pertaining to pilots and airplanes. There are nine parts to the CARs, but most of the things you need to know are in Part IV - Personnel Licensing and Training and Part VI - General Operating and Flight Rules. References to the CARs can be decoded digit-by-digit. Look at 605.28 (1) (a).The 6 means it's in Part VI; the 0 means it's in the CARs (standards have a 2 as the second digit); the 5 is subpart 5. After the decimal, you see paragraph 28. The (1) and (a) in parentheses are subparagraphs. This particular reference is to the regulation requiring a child strapped into a car seat in an airplane to be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

See if you can find regulation 602.25 (2) starting from the index page of the CARs. The trick is to look at the second digit first -- it's a 0, so you want the Canadian Aviation Regulations (not the standards), then you start back at the first digit. This particular reference is to the regulation forbidding you to allow anyone to enter your airplane during flight. Now you've got to look it up, to see if I'm serious!


In order to qualify for a radio licence, you must pass a test on aeronautical radio procedures. Download the Study Guide for the Radiotelephone Operator's Restricted Certificate (Aeronautical) (RIC-21), from Industry Canada, in order to prepare for it.  See more about the RTORC in Preparing for Your First Solo.


The Canada Flight Supplement is a fat blue book giving detailed information on every aerodrome in Canada, from circuit procedures to the fuel available, to the distance to town.  Most of the book is simply an alphabetical listing of airports, from Abbotsford to Zhoda, with a separate index by four-letter identifier. There is a section at the beginning explaining all the abbreviations, and you can also find useful data on things like types of fuel and chart symbols.

The CFS is re-issued every 56 days with updates, but so little changes that once a year is more than often enough to buy a new one. It used to be green, and you'll still see lots of green ones around, and a few really old white ones with a green stripe. Some pilots seem to consider it a status symbol to show off how OLD the CFS in their airplane is, as proof of how long they have been flying. You can buy the CFS at pilot shops, or online from Natural Resources Canada.

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This page written 18 October 2002 by Robyn Stewart. Last revised 18 December 2004.