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ICAO Offers Phonetic Alphabet For Aviation

Alphabet ensures clarity in the air, on the ground

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 As a student pilot, I have had to learn the phonetic alphabet. This is the alphabet used by pilots, air traffic control and the military, among others, to correctly issue instructions.  The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) so that people around the world in aviation understand clearly what letters are being used.

For example, every aircraft in the world has a tail number, like  N711BW. When I’m speaking with ATC or ground control, the plane would be identified as November Seven One One Bravo Whiskey. This ensures that the correct letters are being used, because some letters -- M and N, B and D -- sound very familiar, which could cause problems. So here is the ICAO phonetic alphabet, below.

 
  • A - Alpha

  • B - Bravo

  • C - Charlie

  • D - Delta

  • E - Echo

  • F - Foxtrot

  • G - Golf

  • H - Hotel

  • I - India

  • J - Juliet

  • K - Kilo

  • L - Lima

  • M - Mike

  • N - November

  • O - Oscar

  • P - Papa

  • Q - Quebec

  • R - Romeo

  • S - Sierra

  • T - Tango

  • U - Uniform

  • V - Victor

  • W - Whiskey

  • X - X-ray

  • Y - Yankee

  • Z - Zulu

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