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Air and Marine Range Operations

NASA operates and uses ranges for the purpose of launching, flying, landing, and testing space and aeronautical vehicles and associated technologies. These range operations may involve personnel and property hazards. To address these hazards, NASA’s Range Safety Program provides for the safety and health of the public, the workforce, and property during range operations. This program is supported by the Range Safety Office at NASA Stennis Space Center and involves the efforts of people and organizations throughout the agency.

Map of Overview of Ranges R-4403A, R-4403B, R-4403C, R-4403E and R-4403F at Stennis Space Center
A graphic map delineates the NASA Stennis restricted air space areas of operations.


NASA Stennis schedules and maintains restricted airspace (R-4403A/B) in order to reduce hazards to the public for both propulsion testing and unmanned operations.

R-4403A extends from the surface to 12,000 feet for propulsion testing and operations.

R-4403B, extends from the surface to 6,000 feet used for Unmanned Systems that includes Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and lander type systems. R-4403B is approximately 100 square miles. Stennis Space Center has multiple areas that can be utilized for unmanned systems launch and recovery depending on type of operations.

The Department of Defense owns and operates R-4403C/E/F for military training.


Boundaries- Within a 2.5 Nautical Mile (NM) radius centered at lat. 30°21′51″ N., long. 89°35′39″ W.

Designated altitudes- Surface to 12,000 feet MSL.

Time of designation- Intermittent by NOTAM at least 24 hours in advance.

Controlling agency- FAA, Houston ARTCC.

Using agency- NASA, Director, Stennis Space Center, Bay St. Louis, MS.

Scheduling agency- NASA, Director, Stennis Space Center, Bay St. Louis, MS.


Boundaries- Beginning at lat. 30°29′37″ N., long. 89°35′16″ W.; to lat. 30°29′37″ N., long. 89°32′33″ W.; thence clockwise along a 0.85–NM arc centered at lat. 30°28′46″ N., long. 89°32′33″ W.; to lat. 30°28′46″ N., long. 89°31′34″ W.; to lat. 30°26′25″ N., long.

89°31′34″ W.; to lat. 30°24′02″ N., long. 89°31′34″ W.; thence counterclockwise along

a 4.2–NM arc centered at lat. 30°22′04″ N., long. 89°27′17″ W.; to lat. 30°20′28″ N., long.

89°31′46″ W.; to lat. 30°19′19″ N., long. 89°35′32″ W.; to lat. 30°18′23″ N., long.

89°40′17″ W.; to lat. 30°21′08″ N., long. 89°42′25″ W.; to lat. 30°22′22″ N., long.

89°42′58″ W.; to lat. 30°23′44″ N., long. 89°42′43″ W.; to lat. 30°26′40″ N., long.

89°40′51″ W.; thence counterclockwise along a 3–NM arc centered at lat. 30°29′15″ N.,

long. 89°39′04″ W.; to lat. 30°27′08″ N., long. 89°36′37″ W.; to lat. 30°27′58″ N., long.

89°35′27″ W.; to lat. 30°28′47″ N., long. 89°35′27″ W.; to the point of beginning.

Designated altitudes- Surface to 6,000 feet MSL.

Time of designation- Intermittent, 1000 to 0300 local time, as activated by NOTAM at

least 24 hours in advance.

Controlling agency- FAA, Houston ARTCC.

Using agency- NASA, Director, Stennis Space Center, Bay St. Louis, MS.

Scheduling agency- NASA, Director, Stennis Space Center, Bay St. Louis, MS.

The FAA provides a detailed airspace legal description at

Range Requests

The NASA Stennis Range Safety Office requests that a Range Request Application be submitted for each aircraft entering Stennis Space Center’s buffer zone and fee area. Each submission will give the NASA Stennis Range Safety Officer an opportunity to properly schedule and educate the user of the hazards within the center. Key locations at the center shall be avoided due to increased flight risks to ground hazards (i.e. areas which contain high stores of highly pressurized cryogenic material). The application will allow for: security verification of the pilots, passengers, and cargo as applicable. The pilot(s) and/or passenger(s), if applicable, will be given a permit number, via email, to fly in the NASA Stennis air space. To begin, select “New Range Request” from the main menu. Please contact NASA Range Safety for additional information and assistance.

Stennis Space Center waterways
An aerial photo shows the seven-and-a-half-mile NASA Stennis canal system that connects the site to the Pearl River waterway and provides opportunities for marine range operations.
NASA / Stennis
An unmanned marine systems vehicle is tested in the NASA Stennis canal system.

Marine Operations

NASA Stennis has an interlocked 7.5-mile canal system that can be used for testing and operations. All scheduled maritime range operations go through the Range and Aviation Operations Manager for scheduling, area of operations and mission requirements.

Range Control Operations

Range control provides the communications link between range users, the Range Safety Officer, FAA Air Traffic Control organizations, and pilots in order to ensure the safety of airspace operations. Range control must be active for all airspace activations. NASA Stennis Range Control procedures and Range Safety Officer duties are outlined in SCWI-7900-0002, John C. Stennis Space Center Range Control Procedures.

When range control is active, the contact phone number is 228-688-7264.  The Very High Frequency (VHF) radio frequency is 123.00 Megahertz (MHz), callsign “Stennis Range Control.”

Radio Frequency (RF) Spectrum Management

Any operations that transmit radio frequencies must be approved through the NASA Stennis RF Spectrum Management Office prior to operations. Frequencies will be submitted through the Range and Aviation Operations Manager at least 45 days prior via email.


Request for range (airspace and canal) time should be submitted to the Range and Aviation Operations Manager 60- 90 days prior to desired training date for new operations. This will allow for appropriate agreements.

Range Scheduling Procedures

Submit range requests for new flight projects 60-90 days prior to the planned event, 30 days prior for repeat events. Timelines can be adjusted based on frequencies and operation’s complexity. The 60-90 days provides time to create necessary partnership agreements as required.

For UAS flight operations, range users will complete Appendix D, Questionnaire for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Operations. If conducting UAS research and development type operations, the Range and Aviation Operations Manager will provide a separate set of questions provided by range safety. 

All users utilizing R-4403A/B or conducting operations at SSC may be required to enter into a formal agreement with NASA Stennis to ensure compliance with established applicable laws, federal regulations, executive orders, and NASA directives. Roles and responsibilities for both NASA and requesting user will be clearly identified in order to conduct operations at NASA Stennis.

Contact Us

Range and Aviation Operations Manager
Jason Peterson
John C. Stennis Space Center
Office: 228-688-1257
Cell: 228-342-1525

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