An aircraft registration is an alpha-numeric string marked prominently on the exterior surface of all civil aircraft. The aircraft registration code must also appear on the aircraft’s Certificate of Registration. Military aircraft use a slightly different version called a “Tail Number”. When we perform an aircraft rewire for a civil fixed or rotary wing aircraft, we use the Aircraft Registration when we reference the aircraft. When we perform aircraft Kapton rewire on military aircraft, we use the Tail Number when referencing the airplane or helicopter.
The first use of an aircraft registration was based on radio call signs allocated at the London International Radiotelegraphic Conference in 1913. The certificates are issued by the National Aviation Authority within each country and there can only be one registration for the aircraft in one jurisdiction.
The registration code specifically indicates the country where the aircraft is registered as well as a unique serial number for the aircraft. The prefix of the registration code indicates the country of origin followed by the serial number. In some cases, the unique serial number can be further categorized to indicate the specific type of aircraft. For instance, a turbo-prop originating in the Republic of Korea would have a prefix “HL” followed by a serial number ranging from “5100 through 5499”, whereas a glider would be “HL” followed by “0000 through 0599”.
Here in the United States the serial number is commonly referred to as the “N” number since aircraft originating in the States have a prefix of “N”. Additionally, in the United States, the allowed suffix of the registration number is one of 24 values while each numeric digit can be one of 10 numbers. This equates to a possibility of 915,399 registration numbers.
If you need to register an aircraft, you can go to this form: AC 8050-1. If you need electrical wiring harnesses or cockpit panels, or your turbo-prop or glider wired, please contact us.