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You already know a little about airspaces from your S2 training. As a tower controller, you became very familiar with the D-CTR airspace. We will now look at some other airspaces which will be become relevant to you in your approach training.

Class Clearance required Separation Speed limit

IFR/IFR, IFR/VFR, traffic info for VFR/VFR

250kts for VFR below FL100
IFR/IFR, Traffic info for IFR/VFR, VFR/VFR 250kts below FL100 
IFR/IFR, Traffic info about known traffic for IFR/VFR, VFR/VFR 250kts below FL100 
FIS on request
250kts below FL100

For completeness, we should quickly mention airspaces A, B and F. Airspace B is similar to airspace C but B requires separation between VFR/VFR while airspace A only allows IFR traffic. There used to be areas with airspace F in Germany but they have since been replaced by RMZ (Radio Mandatory Zone) that require traffic to establish radio contact on a specific radio frequency. RMZs are part of airspace G and therefore remain uncontrolled.

Airspace structure in Germany

The following picture illustrates the airspace structure around larger airports (e.g. Frankfurt or Munich) on the left and smaller airports in the centre (e.g. Paderborn/Lippstadt). Uncontrolled airfields with IFR-procedures are protected by a radio mandatory zone (RMZ).


Above FL100 (exception FL130 in some places around the Alps) you find airspace C. Below airspace C there is usually an airspace E followed by airspace G close to the ground.

Around controlled airports you will usually find either airspace C or airspace D above a control zone of airspace D. However, there are lots of exceptions and every airport has a different airspace structure. Therefore, it is essential that you familiarize yourself with your local airspace structure before you start controlling. This can easily be done by using the DFS AIS service that includes a chart of the airspace structure in all of Germany (free registration required).

Lastly it should be mentioned that airspaces C and D are mainly for protecting busy IFR traffic routes from unidentified VFR traffic flying close by.

You should avoid descending IFR traffic outside of airspace C and D into airspace E whenever possible. At most busy German airports there is usually no reason to let IFR traffic leave the protected airspace. 

Terminal Maneuvering Area (TMA)

The TMA is the airspace immediately around a CTR that all traffic to or from a controlled airport has to pass through. The majority of your responsibility will be the traffic inside the TMA. The dimensions of your TMA and the sector you are responsible of is strictly defined by your FIR.

It must be emphasised that parts of your TMA are always airspace E that you are responsible of. The TMA consists of several different airspace classes and it is your job to remember where one airspace class ends and another one begins in order to keep IFR traffic inside controlled airspace and to guide VFR appropriately within uncontrolled and controlled airspace.