Difference between Airport and Aerodrome

Key Difference: An aerodrome or airdrome is any place from where flight operations can take place. This can include an airstrip in the middle of nowhere to a commercial airport in the biggest city in the world. An airport is a special type of aerodrome that has satisfied certain certification criteria or regulatory requirements of the ICAO that a regular aerodrome may not have achieved.

According to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) an aerodrome is "A defined area on land or water (including any buildings, installations, and equipment) intended to be used either wholly or in part for the arrival, departure, and surface movement of aircraft."

The word aerodrome is derived from the Greek words aeros meaning "air" and dromos meaning "road" or "course", hence aerodrome literally means "air course". In retrospect, an aerodrome or airdrome is any place from where flight operations can take place. This can include an airstrip in the middle of nowhere to a commercial airport in the biggest city in the world.  The term aerodrome is more commonly used in UK and other Commonwealth States, rather than in America or rest of the world.

The main function of an aerodrome is to allow a flight to land and takeoff; regardless of whether the flight contains cargo, passengers, or neither. It may also include provisions to any other related activities such as re-fuelling, hangers, etc. The term aerodrome includes small general aviation airfields, large commercial airports, and military airbases. In fact, a water aerodrome is an area of open water used regularly by seaplanes or amphibious aircrafts for landing and taking off.

Looking at the definition of an aerodrome, it can be understood that an airport is in fact a special type of aerodrome. The term airport implies a certain stature of having satisfied certain certification criteria or regulatory requirements of the ICAO that a regular aerodrome may not have achieved. Hence it can be said that all airports are aerodromes, but not all aerodromes are airports.

An airport is any location where aircrafts such as fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and blimps take off and land. An airport may also have hangers where the aircrafts can be stored. An airport usually consists of at least a runway for a plane to take off and land, a helipad, or water for takeoffs and landings, and will often include buildings such as control towers, and terminal buildings.

A larger airport may also have fixed base operator services, seaplane docks and ramps, air traffic control, passenger facilities such as restaurants and lounges, and emergency services. Whereas, a seaplane base is an area of open water used regularly by seaplanes or amphibious aircraft for landing and take off.

Comparison between Airport and Aerodrome:

 

Airport

Aerodrome

Definition

Any location where aircrafts such as fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and blimps take off and land.

Any place from where flight operations can take place.

Guidelines

Must meet all guidelines as set for an airport by the ICAO.

No specific guidelines except safety regulations

Functions

Allow a plane to land and takeoff.

Allow a plane to be stored.

Guide general air traffic.

Allow a plane to land and takeoff.

Consists

Runway, Helipad, Hangers, Control Towers, Terminal Buildings, Water for takeoffs and landings, fixed base operator services, seaplane docks and ramps, air traffic control, passenger facilities such as restaurants and lounges, and emergency services.

Some sort of an area for planes to land and takeoff.

Includes

Small local airports, large commercial airports, heliport, seaplane base, and STOLport.

Small general aviation airfields, large commercial airports, and military airbases

Used in

Everywhere

UK and Commonwealth States

Image Courtesy: warwickdailynews.com.au, kcconfidential.com

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Comments

for more differences what about facilities and, administration, complicity of communications and NAV aids required for both

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