The CAA has published the process and form for claiming back part of the cost of upgrading to a radio that complies with the new 8.33kHz frequency spacing.

All aircraft flying in UK and EU controlled airspace must be equipped with an 8,33kHz radio by 31 December 2017. By moving to 8.33kHz channel spacing, three times the number of channels can be created within the VHF band, needed to ease frequency congestion.

The CAA has negotiated a grant from the EU totalling €4.2m and it will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. The full criteria and process for making a claim is on the CAA website (link below)

Upgrading to 8.33 kHz-compatible equipment and installation options
There are a number of options for purchasing and installing equipment in time for the 8.33 kHz changeover deadline, including a number of ways the installation design approval can be simplified.

Implementing Rule (IR) 1079/2012 says that radio equipment put into service after November 2013 should be 8.33kHz voice communications system (VCS) capable and manufacturers must ensure radios placed on the market from this date meet this requirement.

8.33 radio
All aircraft will need to have an 8.33kHz compliant radio including microlights. [Photo: Trig Avionics]
Dual radios and existing 25 kHz systems
Aircraft will need to be equipped with the number of 8.33kHz capable radios required by operational rules. So where the carriage of two radios is required, both radios must be 8.33kHz VCS capable.

Non-commercial operations fall under Part-NCO which does not include a requirement for aircraft to carry dual radios, but owners are advised to check the relevant regulation to their own operations in order to establish what is required.

Existing 25kHz radios can be left installed provided that they are only used for exempted frequencies, such as the emergency frequency.

Details of hardware that can be claimed and the criteria that must be met are defined in CAP 1501.  Please read the eligibility criteria to determine whether you are able to claim. More information on 8.33 kHz radios

Supporting documentation
You must be prepared to send us electronic copies of the following before beginning your application.

For all applications:

  • A copy of the photo ID you selected in the claim form (only the page, or side of the ID card, that has your photo and date of birth on it).
  • Receipts which match the number you have listed on the application form and include all the equipment you are claiming.

Then, if applicable, also:

  • Evidence of the equivalent unit cost.
  • Proof of foreign exchange rate.
  • If a radio is approved ‘by installation’ then you must provide either a copy of the relevant page from the log book, or a copy of the Certificate of Release. These confirm the licence number of the approving engineer.

For higher value claims (£5,000+), the CAA needs to verify the bank account details. If the total purchase cost of your claim(s) amount to £5,000 or more, you need to provide a copy of a bank statement that is no more than 3 months old. This must show name of bank, name of account, sort code and account number. You may choose to obscure financial transactions.

The CAA reserves the right to request originals of documents, or bank statement evidence from all applicants.

All documents must be provided electronically. Paper copies of documents will not be accepted unless the CAA specifically requests them.

Claim process

  1. Please read the eligibility criteria to determine whether you are able to claim.
  2. Complete the claim form electronically and submit to the CAA.
  3. We will respond with an email that confirms receipt of your application and your reference number.
  4. Reply to that email with electronic copies of all your supporting documentation attached to it within 14 calendar days.
  5. Depending on the volume of claims, we will aim to contact you within 21 days of receipt of all your information.

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CAA 8.33kHz claim process

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