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Fri, Aug 14, 2009

ANN's Daily Aero-Term (08.14.09): Decision Altitude Or Decision Height


Aero-Terms are designed to be a daily reminder of the terms, names, acronyms and explanations of the unique language that populates the aviation world. Aerospace, sport aviation, fixed wing, helo, you name it... it's all fair game.

Aero-Terms should serve as a quick but intriguing reminder of the terms you may use every day, or an introduction to an aspects of the Aero-World you may not yet be familiar with. ANN also encourages readers to go beyond the FMI link, and further research any intriguing terms.

Suggestions for future Aero-Terms are ALWAYS welcome, as are additions or discussion of the explanations given for each Aero-Term.

Decision Altitude or Decision Height

A specified altitude in the precision approach at which a missed approach must be initiated if the required visual reference to continue the approach has not been established. The term “Decision Altitude (DA)” is referenced to mean sea level and the term “Decision Height (DH)” is referenced to the threshold elevation. Even though DH is charted as an altitude above MSL, the U.S. has adopted the term “DA” as a step toward harmonization of the United States and international terminology. At some point, DA will be published for all future instrument approach procedures with vertical guidance.



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