Topic Author
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AA Registration Classification

Thu Jul 18, 2002 3:55 pm

What's the deal with AA tail and aircraft classifications? Why would an AA 757 with registration N352AN be classified as "aircraft 5EK"? I've also seen the "N" number end in AA and AM. Where did the AN and AM come from, and what do 5EK or 6TG or 3A0 mean?

My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
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RE: AA Registration Classification

Thu Jul 18, 2002 10:24 pm

That is weird, I have also seen this on the F100s... Like one would be 1CE. What is the meaning of this ::Shrugs::?
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RE: AA Registration Classification

Thu Jul 18, 2002 10:37 pm

The alphanumeric code is probably a maintenance reference number/internal code for a given aircraft, with "5" indicating 757s, "1" for Fk100s, etc with the two letters going in sequence with the order in which they received the aircraft.

The different endings for the registration may be down to the fact that "AA"-ending registrations aren't available and they have to locate free registration blocks. (Probably the (last) three figures are consecutive.)

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RE: AA Registration Classification

Fri Jul 19, 2002 10:07 am

If you do the math, a fleet number that is just 3 numerals allows for only one hundred aircraft with the first digit pre-determined-e. g. "5" for the 757, "3" for the 737, etc. However, allowing the second and third digit to be letters instead increases this significantly. American has avoided using "I", "O", "Q", and "Z", presumably to avoid being confused with numbers "1", "0", and "2". But this still allows 22*22 = 484 possibilities. As the airline might very well have more that 100 of certain types, this allows them all to be under the same numbering system. It has also allowed the former TWA MD-80 and 757 fleets to be put under the same system, starting with "4TA" and "5TA" respectively.
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RE: AA Registration Classification

Fri Jul 19, 2002 10:29 am

Justplanesmart is JustPlainRight in this case. AA chose to use this method of fleet I.D. to avoid the need to change over to a four digit system. (Such as DL has done with the 777)
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