RVSM airspace was introduced throughout Europe in January 2002. It has also been implemented in North America, South America, Australia, Middle East, Africa, Parts of Asia and the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
RVSM means Reduced Vertical Separation Minima - or in plain english the reduction of the vertical separation required between FL290 and FL410 from 2000ft to 1000ft. By doing this you double the amount of airspace available, therefore doubling the traffic capacity. With the skies getting busier and busier every day the need for more room has become more and more important.
In the real world aircraft must have the following equipment aboard to be RVSM certified and therefore take advantage of the reduced separation minimum:
|West Track||East Track|
|Even Altitudes||Odd Altitudes|
All pilots operating within RVSM airspace are to comply with the following guidelines:
There are a few exceptions which may allow a non-RVSM certified aircraft to operate with RVSM exclusionary airspace. For those who do get clearance into it, the following rules apply: