The FAA provides a variety of important reference material for the student, as well as the advanced civil aviation pilot. In addition to the regulations provided online by the FAA, several other publications are available to the user. Almost all reference material is available online at www.faa.gov in downloadable format. Commercial aviation publishers also provide published and online reference material to further aid the aviation pilot.
Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM)
This manual is offered for sale on a subscription basis or is available online at: http://bookstore.gpo.gov.
Order forms are provided at the beginning of the manual or online and should be sent to the Superintendent of Documents, United States Government Printing Office (GPO). The AIM is complemented by other operational publications, which are available via separate subscriptions or online.
Advisory Circulars (ACs)
Advisory circulars (ACs) provide a single, uniform, agency-wide system that the FAA uses to deliver advisory material to FAA customers, industry, the aviation community, and the public. An AC may be needed to:
• Provide an acceptable, clearly understood method for complying with a regulation.
• Standardize implementation of the regulation or harmonize implementation for the international aviation community.
• Resolve a general misunderstanding of a regulation.
• Expand on standards needed to promote aviation safety, including the safe operation of airports.
There are three parts to an AC number, as in 25-42C. The first part of the number identifies the subject matter area of the AC and corresponds to the appropriate 14 CFR part. For example, an AC on certification: Pilots and Flight and Ground Instructors is numbered as AC 61-65E. Since ACs is numbered sequentially within each subject area, the second part of the number beginning with the dash identifies this sequence. The third part of the number is a letter assigned by the originating office and shows the revision sequence if an AC is revised. The first version of an AC does not have a revision letter. In Figure 1-17, this is the fifth revision, as designated by the “E.”