Tunis-Carthage International Airport is located in the northeast of Tunis, the capital city of Tunisia. It is the main international airport serving the city and the country, with a passenger traffic of over 5 million in 2019. The airport is situated approximately 8 km from the city center and is named after the nearby ancient city of Carthage. Tunis-Carthage Airport serves as a hub for several airlines including Tunisair, Tunisair Express, Nouvelair, and Syphax Airlines. It offers direct flights to many destinations in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
Airspace Boundaries and Classes
|A||IFR only, subject to ATC and separated from all other traffic|
|B||IFR and VFR, subject to ATC and separated from all other traffic|
|C||IFR and VFR, subject to ATC, IFR separated from other IFR and VFR, VFR separated from IFR and given traffic info on other VFR|
|D||IFR and VFR, subject to ATC, IFR separated from other IFR and given traffic info on VFR, VFR given traffic info on all traffic|
|E||IFR and VFR, subject to ATC, IFR separated from other IFR, all traffic given traffic info as far as practical|
|F||IFR and VFR, IFR given advisory service, all traffic given flight information service if requested|
|G||IFR and VFR, flight information service provided if requested|
|CTR Tunis||DTTA_TWR||D||SFC - 1 500 ft|
|CTA Tunis||DTTA_APP||D||3 500 ft - FL 105|
|CTA Tunis North East||DTTC_CTR||A
|SFC - FL 195
FL 195 - FL 460
|DTTA_APP||Tunis Approach||121.200 MHz|
|DTTA_TWR||Tunis Tower||118.100 MHz|
|DTTA_GND||Tunis Ground||121.900 MHz|
|DTTA_ATIS||Tunis Carthage ATIS||118.675 MHz|
Aerodrome Geographical Data
|ARP||N36°51.04' / E1°01.33'|
|Aerodrome Location||7 NM N of Tunis City|
|Elevation at ARP||22 feet|
|Magnetic Variation||3.2° East|
|Transition Altitude||6 000 ft|
Radio Navigation & Landing Aids
|ILS 01||TBL||-||111.100 MHz||3° GP|
|ILS 19||TSI||-||110.300 MHz||3° GP|
|ILS 29||TKE||-||108.500 MHz||3° GP|
Published Holding Procedures
|FIX||Min/Max Alt||Inbound Track||Turn Direction||RWY|
|NIREM||3,700 ft / FL 100||183°||Left||01|
|NIREM||3,000 ft / FL 100||183°||Left||11
|MARSA||3,700 ft / FL 100||040°||Left||01|
|MARSA||3,000 ft / FL 100||040°||Left||11
|Runways||Dimensions||Magnetic Bearing||Threshold Elevation|
|01||3,200 x 45 m||008°||4 m / 6 m|
|19||3,200 x 45 m||189°||6 m / 6 m|
|11||2,850 x 45 m||107°||6 m|
|29||2,850 x 45 m||289°||4 m / 5 m|
|01||3,200 m||3,260 m||3,200 m||3,200 m|
|19||3,200 m||3,260 m||3,200 m||3,200 m|
|11||2,850 m||2,850 m||2,850 m||2,850 m|
|29||2,850 m||2,910 m||2,850 m||2,650 m|
Aprons and Parking
The SMC controller’s callsign, for radio communication and coordination, is “Tunis Ground”.
The SMC controller is the first station for all departing aircraft (IFR/VFR) to call and is responsible for operations on the surface of Tunis-Carthage Airport, such as pushback/engine start-up.
En Route Clearance and Start-up
After requesting taxi clearance from the SMC controller, pilots are transferred to "Tunis Tower" for taxi instructions. While taxiing, the tower will provide their en-route clearance. This clearance should conform to the following format and each of the following items must be read back.
An IFR clearance shall be in the following format:
- Departure procedure;
- Initially cleared altitude;
- SSR code
SYA14T: "Tunis Ground, Syphax 14 Tango, information november, request pushback & startup."
DTTA_GND: "Syphax 14 Tango, Tunis Ground, start-up approved, report ready for pushback."
SYA14T: "Ready for pushback, startup approved, Syphax 14 Tango."
DTTA_GND: "Syphax 14 Tango, pushback approved facing West."
SYA14T: "Pushback approved facing West, Syphax 14 Tango."
DTTA_GND: "Syphax 14 Tango, contact Tower 118.100"
SYA14T: "Syphax 14 Tango, request taxi."
DTTA_TWR: "Syphax 14 Tango, Tunis Tower, taxi bravo, echo, holding point RWY 01. QNH 1014."
SYA14T: "Taxi bravo, echo, holding point RWY 01, QNH 1014, Syphax 14 Tango"
SYA14T: "Syphax 14 Tango, ready to copy ATC clearance."
DTTA_TWR: "Syphax 14 Tango, Cleared Destination, TOBIB2A, Level 100, Squawk 6137."
SYA14T: "Cleared Destination, TOBIB2A, Level 100, Squawk 6137, Syphax 14 Tango."
If a clearance cannot be immediately granted by the controller for any reason, the pilot shall be instructed to standby for clearance. Additionally, the controller may issue 'technical start-up' approval to the pilot, indicating that their start-up request has been approved but the en route clearance is still being processed.
It is important to note that pilots are not authorised to start their engines when positioned at nose-in stands and a separate clearance for pushback is still required. The start-up clearance will be recorded as Estimated Off-Block Time (EOBT). If the start-up clearance cannot be provided within the next 5 minutes, the start-up shall not be approved, and the pilot shall be given the Target Start-Up Approval Time (TSAT).
In situations of high traffic volume, when a pilot requests start-up, they may receive a Target Start-up Approval Time (TSAT). This TSAT indicates the anticipated time for the pilot to receive approval for start-up/pushback.
If the pilot requests start-up while also requesting the en route clearance, the TSAT will be provided simultaneously. The pilot is responsible for initiating the start-up process by informing the controller when they are ready for start-up.
DTTA_GND: "Syphax 14 Tango, start up time at 1415 (TSAT 14:15z), report aircraft ready"
SYA14T: "Wilco, Syphax 14 Tango"
The runway will be confirmed either prior to taxi or during the pushback clearance by Ground.
The pushback direction depends on the location of the aircraft and runway configuration.
Example: "Syphax 14 Tango, pushback approved, face south”.
VFR circuits shall not be permitted at the aerodrome during times of increased IFR departure or arrival activity and shall be permitted only after prior coordination with TWR.
Taxiway Usage and Restrictions
Although there are no regulated taxi routes in Tunis-Carthage, it is advised that outbound traffic use outer-taxiways and incoming traffic use apron inner-taxiways.
To ensure a smooth taxi flow and avoid conflicting routes, it is recommended to utilise entries and exits in a unidirectional manner.
Runway Change Procedure
Tower shall provide ample notice to Ground before changing runway configuration. The last departure using the old configuration shall be coordinated between Tower, Ground and Approach.
Aircraft that have already been cleared to taxi using the old configuration shall be re-cleared if they have not already reached the holding point.
The aerodrome controller’s (ADC) callsign, for radio communication and coordination, is "Tunis Tower".
Tower is responsible for all aerodrome movements on runways, all taxiways and all operations within the Tunis CTR below 1 500 ft MSL.
Tower shall also ensure separation between IFR aircraft that are arriving at and departing the aerodrome, as well as provide traffic information about VFR flights operating within the control zone.
Tower determines the direction of operations. Runway configurations should not be mixed and arrivals and departures should remain segregated.
If a Northern Runway Configuration is being used: The crosswind component, including gusts, is less or equal to 15 kt for dry RWY and less or equal to 10 kt for wet or contaminated RWY. OR The wind is calm or bisecting and the traffic allows it.
If a Southern Runway Configuration is being used: The crosswind component, including gusts, is less or equal to 15 kt for dry RWY and less or equal to 10 kt for wet or contaminated RWY. OR The tail wind component, including gusts, is less than 5 kt.
A conditional clearance is a clearance issued by an air traffic controller which does not become effective until a specified condition has been satisfied. Conditional line up instructions must include the traffic that the aircraft is to follow, as well as the word “behind” at the beginning and end of the transmission.
"Syphax 14 Tango, behind the departing company Airbus A320, line-up and wait, runway 01, behind".
However, if the aircraft ahead is already well clear, the next aircraft may be instructed simply to: “line-up and wait.”
Aircraft shall be separated on departure in compliance with standard IFR departure wake turbulence separation requirements. Departures with the same flow point must be separated by at least 5 NM or the appropriate wake turbulence requirement, whichever is greater. A greater separation needs to be coordinated between the radar controller and TWR.
All fixed-wing IFR departures with the same TMA flow point shall be transferred to Approach with 5 NM in trail. For separation of 5 NM, the proceeding traffic needs to be 2-3 NM away from the end of the departure runway. If no radar screen is used, two minute separation can be used in this case as well.
If the distance ends up being less than 5 NM but more than 3 NM (ensured), coordination is required and avoiding action to be taken by the pilot is given when the controller considers that an imminent risk a collision will exist if action is not taken immediately.
VFR aircraft may be instructed to maintain visual separation with preceding aircraft and given a take-off clearance if no wake turbulence or flow separation minima exist.
"Syphax 14 Tango, initially 4000 feet, runway 01, cleared take-off, wind 280 degrees, 09 knots".
When traffic is clear of DER (if there is no WTS minima) or the respective minima between the two aircraft, a departure may be cleared for aircraft that do not require separation along the same flow point or a WTS minima greater than 5 NM. However, the controller shall provide traffic information as appropriate to ensure traffic is separated upon TMA entry.
"Syphax 14 Tango, initially 4000 feet, runway 01, cleared take-off, wind 280 degrees, 09 knots, proceeding traffic ATR-600".
ADC shall use caution when departing aircraft with different speed profiles and is fully responsible for ensuring that horizontal or vertical separation exists at all times. It is thus advised that a VFR aircraft on a visual climbout must turn more than 45° from the runway track in order to allow succeeding IFR traffic to depart with separation of less than 5 NM in trail.
Cancelling or Stopping a Take-off
IFR departures shall be instructed to contact the radar controller once airborne in the take-off clearance. When an aircraft has commenced the take-off roll, and it is necessary for the aircraft to abandon take-off in order to avert a dangerous traffic situation, the aircraft should be instructed to stop immediately and the instruction and callsign repeated.
"Syphax 14 Tango, stop immediately, Syphax 14 Tango, stop immediately".
For aircraft that have been given a take-off clearance, but have not yet started the roll, they shall be instructed to hold position and the take-off clearance must be cancelled along with the reason for cancellation.
The Approach controller is responsible for establishing longitudinal separation between arrivals until touchdown. If they fall below the separation minima, ADC has to instruct the pilot to go around. In this case, coordination with Approach is strongly recommended.
The minimum separation between two aircraft approaching the same runway is always 5 NM or wake turbulence separation, whichever is higher.
If it is apparent that minimum separation is infringed, Tower may apply a speed reduction to maintain in order to ensure separation, however, controllers must use caution as proceeding arrival flows may be inconvenienced. As such, continuous coordination between Approach and Tower is highly recommended.
"Syphax 14 Tango, reduce to minimum approach speed".
Aircraft may be instructed to maintain their separation visually if speed control alone will not resolve the conflict. This shall only be done in VMC and with an agreement with the pilot. If no other solutions are practical, the succeeding aircraft shall be instructed to go around.
Missed Approach Instructions
Instructions to carry out a missed approach may be given to avert an unsafe situation. When a missed approach is initiated, cockpit workload is inevitably high. Any transmissions to aircraft going around should be brief and kept to a minimum.
"Syphax 14 Tango, go around, I say again, go around, acknowledge".
Once the traffic has acknowledged the instruction and is observed to be safely climbing away, they shall be handed off to the Approach controller.
"Syphax 14 Tango, fly runway heading, climb 3 000 ft, contact Tunis Radar 121.200".
In the case that there is a risk that the go-around aircraft will overtake the departing aircraft, instructions for avoiding action shall be given to the departing aircraft in the form of altitude restrictions. Additionally, if separation is infringed, each aircraft shall receive relevant traffic information, respectively.
Departures shall not be permitted to commence their take-off roll until separation with go-around traffic is assured.
Aerodrome Traffic Circuits
Low Visibility Procedures (LVP)
The three stages of Low Visibility Procedures are:
Tunis Approach (APP) is in charge of all traffic within the Tunis CTA as well as the Tunis CTR and is required to offer approach control services to aircraft from the time and location at which arriving aircraft are transferred from Tunis ACC until control is transferred to ADC, departing aircraft on specific routes are transferred from ADC until they are transferred to Casablanca ACC or until an aircraft is clear of controlled airspace.
Approach provides services suitable for approach control tasks and ensures uniform separation between Special VFR and IFR flights as well as between Special VFR flights.
5 NM radar separation minima between all aircraft is to be applied by Approach.
Departing aircraft shall be cleared to their final level before handoff to ACC unless they were cleared to a lower altitude in their departure clearance and are to be handed off 2 minutes prior to reaching the vertical or lateral limits of the CTA.
When issuing deviations off track are required, Approach shall ensure departures are above MRVA or are able to maintain visual separation from the terrain.
Speed restrictions below FL100 may be cancelled by Approach in order to increase separation.
Aircraft must be transferred to the appropriate ACC controller at the designated flight levels: