Table that Contents

Runway MarkingsApproach light SystemsVisual Glideslope IndicatorsAirport BeaconsRunway standing Light System

Chevrons are yellow markings aligned v the runway that show pavement locations that room unusable for landing, takeoff, and taxiing.

You are watching: Runway paint markings are what color

Demarcation bars delineate displaced runway thresholds from unusable pavement such as blast pads, stopways, or taxiways the precede the threshold. A demarcation bar is yellow because it is not situated on the runway.

Threshold bars delineate the start of runways when a threshold has actually been relocated or displaced.

Threshold markings determine the start of the runway that is easily accessible for landing. Runway threshold markings come in 2 configurations. These markings have eight stripes that uniform dimensions, or the variety of stripes is related to the runway width. Intuitive runways, those without an tool approach, perform not have actually threshold markings.

The following table suggests the number of stripes when related come the runway width.

60′ Wide75′ Wide100′ Wide150′ Wide200′ Wide
4 Stripes6 Stripes8 Stripes12 Stripes16 Stripes

Designation markings room numbers and letters that determine a runway. The number is figured out from the technique direction. That is based upon the magnetic heading that the runway centerline. The letter differentiate in between left (L), right (R), or facility (C) parallel runways, as applicable.

Centerline markings recognize the center of the runway and provide alignment guidance come aircraft during takeoff and landing. The stripes are 120′ in size with 80′ gaps.

Side strip markings consist of continuous white stripes located on every side that the runway. This markings provide visual contrast in between runway pavement and the ground.

Shoulder markings consists of constant yellow stripes supplied when needed to determine pavement next to the runway that is no intended for use by aircraft.

Touchdown region markings identify the touchdown zone for aircraft on a precision tool approach. The markings consist of groups of one, two, and also three rectangular bars symmetrically i ordered it in pairs around the runway centerline. They space spaced in 500′ increments, measured native the start of the runway.

Aiming point markings serve as a visual aiming allude for a landing aircraft. This two rectangular markings consists a vast white stripe situated on every side that the runway centerline and approximately 1,000′ native the landing threshold. The markings room 100′ come 150′ in length, depending upon the runway length.

Types of Runways

The markings top top a runway count on the species of approaches performed to the runway. The three runway species are: visual, nonprecision instrument, and also precision instrument.

The adhering to table shows the markings because that each type of runway.

MarkingVisual RunwayNonprecision instrument RunwayPrecision tool Runway
Threshold XX
Aiming Point XX
Touchdown Zone X
Side Stripes X
Taxiway Markings

Enhanced taxiway centerline markings are provided at bigger airports to warn pilots that they are approaching a runway holding position marking. This markings consist of 2 parallel, yellow-dashed lines located on either next of the common taxiway centerline beginning about 150′ prior to a runway holding position marking.

Normal taxiway centerline markings space a single constant yellow line. Ideally, the aircraft must be kept focused over this line during taxi. However, being centered on the taxiway centerline does no guarantee wingtip clearance with various other aircraft or objects.

Surface painted place signs are located on the best side that the centerline aid the pilot in confirming the taxiway on which the aircraft is located. These markings have actually a black background with a yellow inscription.

Geographic place markings are situated at points follow me low visibility taxi paths to identify taxiing aircraft’s location throughout low visibility operations. This markings are made up of an outer white or black ring through a pink one in the middle. One of two people a number or a number and letter is positioned in the facility of the pink circle.

Surface painted taxiway direction signs are listed when that is not possible to carry out taxiway direction indications at intersections, or when vital to supplement such signs. These markings have actually a yellow background with a black color inscription.

Edge markings assist define the taxiway’s edge, mostly when the taxiway sheet does no correspond with the sheet of the pavement. This markings frequently consist of continuous double yellow lines. Dashed currently are used when the adjoining pavement is intended to be offered by aircraft (e.g., ramps and run-up areas).

Shoulder markings space yellow stripes that are used where conditions exist such together taxiway curves that may cause confusion as to which next of the edge stripe is for use by aircraft. A taxiway shoulder is no intended for use by aircraft.

Holding position Markings

Runway holding place markings suggest where an aircraft is supposed to stop when approaching a runway. These markings consist of of four yellow lines, two solid and also two dashed, extending throughout the taxiway or runway width. The solid present are always on the side whereby the plane is to hold.

Runway holding position markings may be encountered:

On taxiways whereby an plane is claimed to stop when it does not have actually clearance to continue onto the runway.On runways the ATC provides for land and hold brief operations (LAHSO) or taxiing operations.On taxiways situated in runway strategy areas are offered at part airports wherein a taxiway is situated in technique or leave area. ATC educates pilots as soon as to hold brief of a runway technique or leave area (e.g. “22-APCH” sign).

Example Instructions: “Hold quick of Runway 32 technique area.”

Holding place markings for instrument landing system (ILS) crucial areas consist of of 2 solid yellow present (horizontal) linked by bag of solid lines (vertical) extending throughout the width of the taxiway. ATC educates pilots once to hold short of an ILS an essential area.

Holding position markings for taxiway/taxiway intersections consists a single, yellow dashed line extending throughout the taxiway’s width.


Other airplane Markings

Vehicle roadway markings are used when vital to define a pathway for car operations on or crossing locations that are likewise intended for aircraft. Zipper markings delineate the edge of the auto roadway. In lieu the the dashed lines, solid white lines may be used.

VOR checkpoint markings allow the pilot to examine aircraft instruments with NAVAID signals. It consists of a painted circle v an arrowhead in the center that is aligned in the direction the the checkpoint azimuth.

Nonmovement area boundary markings delineate the activity area, an area regulated by ATC. This markings consist of two yellow lines, one solid and also one dashed. The solid heat is situated on the nonmovement area side (not under ATC control). The dashed yellow heat is located on the movement area next (ATC controlled).

Permanently closeup of the door runways and also taxiways have their light circuits disconnected, and also the runway threshold, runway designation, and touchdown markings room obliterated. Yellow crosses are painted on each finish of the runway and at 1,000-foot intervals.

Temporarily closed runways and taxiways have the right to be established by yellow crosses. A cross might be inserted on each runway finish in lieu of permanent markings.

Airport Signs

Mandatory instruction signs have actually a red background with a white inscription. They are offered to signify an entrance to a runway or critical area, andareas wherein an plane is prohibited native entering.

Typical mandatory signs and also applications are:

Runway holding position signsRunway method area holding place signsILS critical area holding place signsNo entry signs

Location signs commonly have a black color background through a yellow inscription and also yellow border. Lock are used to identify where the plane is located.

Typical location signs applications are:

Taxiway location signsRunway location signsRunway boundary indicators (yellow background through a black graphic showing the runway holding place marking)ILS an essential area boundary indicators (yellow background with a black graphic showing the ILS holding position marking)

Direction signs have actually a yellow background with a black color inscription. Each designation is accompanied by an arrow indicating the direction the the turn.

Destination signs likewise have a yellow background v a black engraving indicating a location on the airport. This signs always have an arrow showing the direction to a destination. Destinations frequently shown space runways, terminals, cargo areas, and FBOs.

Information signs have actually a yellow background v a black inscription. These signs provide the pilot with info such together radio frequencies and noise abatement procedures.

Runway distance staying signs have a black color background v a white numeral inscription and may be mounted along one or both political parties of the runway. The number ~ above the signs suggests the distance, in countless feet, that landing runway remaining.


Approach bright Systems

Approach lighting equipment (ALS) provide pilots through a means to shift from instrument flight to visual flight for landing. Operational needs dictate the sophistication and configuration that the approach light device for a certain runway.


Some strategy light systems encompass sequenced flashing (SF) lights, which show up to the pilot together a ball of irradiate traveling towards the runway at high speed (twice a second). This lights room sometimes referred to as “the rabbit.”

Runway alignment indicator lamp (RAIL) space a collection of SF lamp (typically 5) aligned through the runway centerline. They finish where the white approach lights start (not blended with steady lights).

Decision bars space a set of horizontal white lights located in some technique light construction 1,000′ from the threshold. The irradiate bar serves as a visible horizon to ease the change from instrument flight to visual flight. The aircraft must be about 100′ AGL at this point.

Types of technique Light Systems

Approach Lighting system with Sequenced Flashing lights (ALSF-1) provides visual details for classification I instrument approaches. It features red terminating bars situated on either next of the centerline and also 200′ from the finish of the runway. Located closer to the runway is another collection of red lights called wing bars.

High-Intensity method Lighting system with Sequenced Flashing lamp (ALSF-2) gives visual information for classification II and III instrument approaches. The lights extend into the method area a street of 2,400′. Strobe lamp flash in sequence, starting with the strobe farthest from the runway and ending with the strobe closest come the runway threshold. The lights room spaced in ~ 100-foot intervals indigenous the runway threshold outward to 2,400′.

ALSF-2 features red side heat bars. These bars consist of 2 sets of 3 red lights on either next of the centerline and also extend the end 1,000′ indigenous the runway. The bars room inline v the runway touchdown zone (TDZ) lights.

Note: as soon as using the method lights together the just visual reference, descent below 100′ above TDZE is no authorized till the side heat bars (ALSF-2) or the discontinuation bars (ALSF-1) space in view.

Medium technique Light system with Runway Alignment Indicator lamp (MALSR) is the FAA traditional for group I precision instrument technique runways.

Simplified Short approach Lighting device with Runway Alignment Indicator lights (SSALR) is the exact same configuration as MALSR, but SSALR is combined with a category II ALSF-2 and is utilized when classification I problems exist. SSALR is a more economical setting than ALSF-2.

Simplified Short technique Light mechanism with Sequenced Flashing lights (SSALF) is the very same as SSALR but instead supplies sequenced flashing lights.

Medium Intensity strategy Light mechanism with Sequenced Flashing lamp (MALSF) is a simple, economy type system fitted with 3 sequenced flashers at locations where strategy area identification troubles exist.

Runway Lead-In Light system (RLLS) consists of one or an ext series of flashing lights installed at or close to ground level that gives positive visual guidance along technique path, either curving or straight, whereby special problems exist with hazardous terrain, obstructions, or noise abatement procedures. RLLS have the right to be supplied in connect with other lighting systems.

Example: The Canarsie strategy to runway 13L at KJFK.

Omni-Directional technique Lighting device (ODALS) is a configuration of 7 omni-directional sequenced flashing lights located in the runway technique area. The ODALS provides circling, offset, and straight-in intuitive guidance because that nonprecision approach runways.


Visual Glideslope Indicators

Visual glideslope signs are situated on the left next of some runways to provide the pilot through glidepath information that can be used for work or night approaches.

Note: In class B, C, and D airspace, pilots who room approaching come land a runway served by a visual method slope indicator must maintain an altitude at or above the glidepath till a reduced altitude is important for a for sure landing.

Visual method Slope Indicator

The visual method slope indicator (VASI) is a device of lights arranged to carry out a intuitive descent path to a runway. This lights room visible from about 3–5 miles during the day and also up to 20 miles at night.

The VASI’s visual descent path offers safe obstruction clearance within plus or minus 10° of the prolonged runway centerline and to 4 NM indigenous the runway threshold. Descent utilizing the VASI have to not it is in initiated until the plane is visually aligned v the expanded runway centerline.

Two-bar VASI installations are most common. They administer one intuitive glidepath, i beg your pardon is typically set at 3°. At some locations, the angle might be together high as 4.5° come give suitable obstacle clearance.

Three-bar VASI installations carry out two intuitive glidepaths. The reduced glidepath is detailed by the near and also middle bars and is typically set at 3° if the top glidepath, provided by the middle and far bars, is usually 1/4° higher. This greater glidepath is intended because that use just by high-cockpit plane to carry out a enough threshold cross height.

an easy means to mental VASI indications:

“Red end white, you’re alright”“White end white, you’ll fly all night”“Red over red, you’re dead”

Precision method Path Indicator

The precision approach path indicator (PAPI) uses light units similar to the VASI yet is installed in a solitary row that either 2 or 4 light units. This lights space visible from about 5 miles during the day and also up to 20 miles at night.

Safe obstruction clearance is typically detailed within plus or minus 10° of the prolonged runway centerline and also to 3.4 NM from the runway threshold. Descent, using the PAPI, must not it is in initiated until the plane is visually aligned v the runway.

The visual glidepath is typically set at 3°, return the angle may be as high together 4.5° in ~ some areas to give proper obstacle clearance.


Tri-Color Visual approach Slope Indicator

Tri-color visual technique slope indicators normally consist the a single light unit projecting a three-color visual technique path into the final technique area that the runway. These varieties of indicators have a useful selection of around 1/2 come 1 mile during the day and also up come 5 mile at night.

Glidepath Indications:

Below Glidepath: RedSlightly below Glidepath: AmberOn Glidepath: GreenAbove Glidepath: Amber

Pulsating Visual technique Slope Indicator

Pulsating visual method slope indications (PVASIs) normally consist that a solitary light unit projecting a two-color visual method path into the final strategy area the the runway ~ above which the indicator is installed. The pulsating rate. The system’s useful range is around 4 miles during the day and up to 10 mile at night.

Glidepath Indications:

Below Glidepath: Pulsating red (increasing price as the plane gets further below the glidepath)Slightly below Glidepath: stable redOn Glidepath: steady white or alternate red/whiteAbove Glidepath: Pulsating white (increasing price as the aircraft gets further above the glidepath)Runway Lighting

Runway end identifier lights (REIL) space flashing lamp that provide rapid and positive to know of the end of a runway. The system is composed of two synchronized flashing lights, uni-directional or omni-directional, one on every side of the runway landing threshold.

Runway threshold lights mark the ends of the runway emit red light toward the runway to show the finish of runway to a departing aircraft and emit eco-friendly outward native the runway end to suggest the threshold come landing aircraft.

Runway edge lights synopsis the edge of runways during periods the darkness or limited visibility conditions. This lights room white, except on tool runways yellow replaces white on the critical 2,000′ or half the runway length, whichever is less, to type a caution zone because that landings.

Runway edge light systems are classified according to the strongness or brightness castle are qualified of producing: high-intensity runway lights (HIRL), medium-intensity runway lights (MIRL), and low-intensity runway lights (LIRL). The HIRL and MIRL systems have actually variable strongness controls, conversely, the LIRL’s normally have one soot setting.

Runway centerline light systems (RCLS) are mounted on part precision method runways to facilitate landing under adverse visibility conditions. This lights are located along the runway centerline and are spaced in ~ 50-foot intervals. As soon as viewed indigenous the landing threshold, the runway centerline lights space white until the last 3,000′ that the runway. The white lights start to alternating with red for the following 2,000′, and for the last 1,000′ the the runway, every centerline lights room red.

Touchdown zone lights (TDZL) are installed on some precision technique runways to show the touchdown zone as soon as landing under adverse visibility conditions. This lights consist of of 2 rows the transverse irradiate bars disposed symmetrically around the runway centerline. The system is composed of steady-burning white lights that start 100′ beyond the landing threshold and also extend to 3,000′ beyond the landing threshold or come the midpoint of the runway, whichever is less.

Taxiway centerline lead-off lights carry out visual guidance come pilots exiting the runway. This lights alternative green and also yellow indigenous the runway centerline come the runway holding position or the ILS crucial area, together appropriate.

Taxiway centerline lead-on lights administer visual guidance to pilots beginning the runway and to warning them the they are within the runway atmosphere or ILS an important area. This lights alternate green and also yellow. The fixtures space bidirectional (one next emits light for the lead-on function while the other side emits light for the lead-off function).

Land and hold quick lights indicate the hold short suggest on details runways that are approved for land and hold short operations (LAHSO). Land and also hold brief lights consists a heat of pulsing white lamp installed across the runway at the hold brief point. Whereby installed, the lights room on as soon as LAHSO is in effect.

Taxiway Lighting

Taxiway edge lights outline the edge of taxiways throughout periods that darkness or restricted visibility conditions. These fixtures space steady burning and emit blue light.

Taxiway centerline lights are situated along the taxiway centerline to facilitate ground traffic under short visibility conditions. This lights space steady burning and also emit green light.

Clearance bar lights consist of three, yellow in-pavement lights. This lights are installed at some taxiway holding location to increase the conspicuity the the holding place in short visibility conditions and periods the darkness.

Runway safety lights are mounted at taxiways the provide accessibility to an energetic runway and also may be offered in all weather conditions. This lights consists elevated or in-pavement, alternately flashing yellow lamp that determine the location of a runway holding position marking.

Elevated runway security lights are referred to as “wig-wag” lights due to the fact that they blink on and off in an alternate fashion.

Stop bar lights check the ATC clearance to enter or overcome the active runway in low visibility conditions. This lights consists a row of red, unidirectional, elevated and in-pavement lights inserted at the runway holding position (runway entrance or ILS critical area). These lights might be operated instantly or controlled by ATC. Following an ATC clearance come proceed, the prevent bar is rotate off, and the taxiway centerline lead-on lights room turned on.

Caution: Pilots should never overcome a red illuminated prevent bar, even if one ATC clearance has actually been received.

Control of airport Lighting

ATC controls plane lighting at towered airports. A pilot may request assorted light equipment be turned on or turn off and additionally request a mentioned intensity, if available.

At nontowered airports, the lights may be ~ above a day/night timer, or the pilot may regulate the bright by radio. The bright intensity have the right to be adjusted by selecting a mentioned frequency and also clicking the radio microphone.

Pilot manage of plane Lighting
Key MikeFunction
7 time within 5 secondsHighest intensity available
5 times within 5 secondsMedium or lower intensity (lower REIL or REIL off)
3 time within 5 secondsLowest intensity available (lower REIL or REIL off)

Lights typically remain top top the selected intensity because that 15 minutes.

Airport Beacons

Airport and heliport beacons have a upright light distribution to do them most effective from 1° come 10° above the horizon. The beacon might be one omni-directional capacitor-discharge device, or it may rotate in ~ a continuous speed i m sorry produces the visual result of flashes at regular intervals.

Number the Beacon Flashes:

Airports: 24–30 per minuteHeliports: 30–45 per minute

Beacon Colors:

White and also Green: Lighted floor airportWhite and Yellow: Lighted water airportGreen, Yellow, and also White: Lighted heliportWhite (Dual Flashes) and also Green: army airport

Beacon Operation during Daylight Hours

In class B, class C, course D and also Class E surface ar areas, procedure of the airport beacon throughout daylight hours indicates that the floor visibility is less than 3 SM or the ceiling is much less than 1,000′ (unless it was erroneously left on). One ATC clearance in accordance with 14 CFR part 91 is forced for landing, takeoff, and also flight in the traffic pattern.

There is no regulatory requirement for daylight beacon operation. Pilots must not rely specifically on the airport beacon’s procedure to show if weather problems are IFR or VFR.

Hot Spots

A hot spot is a ar on one airport movement area through a background or potential hazard of collision or runway incursion, and also where heightened attention by pilots and drivers is necessary. Warm spots are commonly located at confusing taxiway or runway intersections.

Hot clues are portrayed on airport diagrams as open circles designated by “HS” and also a number (e.g., HS 1 or HS 2). Castle are likewise described in chart Supplements publication under the “Hots Spots” heading. Warm spots remain charted until the enhanced risk has actually been decreased or eliminated.

Low Visibility operations Surface motion Guidance and Control System

The short Visibility operations Surface activity Guidance and Control device (LVO/SMGCS, pronounced “LVO SMIGS”) was arisen to facilitate the safe activity of aircraft and also vehicles in ~ airports where scheduled air carriers conduct low-visibility operations, those that occur when the runway visible variety (RVR) is listed below 1200′. It provides improvement of taxiway and also runway signs, markings, and also lighting, and the development of visual help diagrams.

Operational Notes:

Part 121 and 135 operators should comply v LVO/SMGCS plan when imposed at their certain airport.Part 91 operators have to follow the plans to the preferably extent feasible and expect “follow-me” assistance to and from the runway environment.Anyone operation in conjunction through the LVO/SMGCS setup must have a copy of the short Visibility Taxi course Chart. This charts summary the approved taxi routes and also other information concerning low visibility operations.Airport surface ar Detection Equipment

Airport surface ar detection tools detects aircraft, vehicles, and also other objects on an airport’s surface and presents the info as pictures to ground and also tower controllers. The data can also be detailed to an automated Runway standing Lights system.

Systems Types:

ASDE-3: Surface activity Radar (non ADS-B)ASDE-X: Airport surface ar Detection Equipment-Model X (radar and ADS-B)ASSC: Airport surface Surveillance ability (radar and ADS-B)

Data Sources:

Surface motion radarSensors located approximately the airportAircraft transpondersADS-B sensorsRunway standing Light System

The Runway standing Lights (RWSL) system is a completely automated, advisory system designed to reduce runway incursions. It advises pilots that a potential dispute by illuminating red lights.

Operational Notes:

The RWSL mechanism reinforces controller guidance. The is no a substitute for a verbal ATC clearance.If ATC offers a clearance and also the lights continue to be illuminated, pilots need to not proceed however advise ATC that they space holding for red lights.When operation at airports v RWSL, pilots have to operate through transponder and also ADS-B equipment ON until getting here at or leaving the parking area.


Runway Entrance lamp (REL) room in-pavement, red lights located along the taxiway centerline. These lights are concentrated toward the pilot in ~ the organize line. As soon as activated, the lights show high-speed web traffic on the runway or an plane on final strategy within the activation area.

See more: How Many Ounces Is 84 Grams To Ounces, 84 G To Oz 84 Grams To Ounces

Takeoff host Lights (THL) covers a double-row that in-pavement, red lights aligned on either side of the runway centerline lighting. This lights are concentrated toward the “line up and also wait” point. THLs illuminate for an aircraft in place for departure or departing when there is another aircraft or car on the runway or around to enter the runway. Once that aircraft or vehicle exits the runway, the THLs extinguish.