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Part 23 Aircraft Certification Rewrite Includes EAA, GA Recommendations

December 16, 2016 ­– Many recommendations made by EAA and others in the general aviation community to revise the aircraft certification process, outlined in Part 23, were incorporated into the FAA’s rewrite of the rule, which was announced December 16 in Washington, D.C. by FAA administrator Michael Huerta.

Also speaking at the event in praise of the rule was Hartzell Propeller President and EAA Director Joe Brown.

The rewrite replaces some of the FAA’s rigid manufacturing standards with current industry standards, a concept pioneered by the EAA-led light-sport rule more than a decade ago.

The FAA announcement is the next step toward meeting a congressional mandate to revise the regulations governing small aircraft certification. EAA has long supported the Part 23 rewrite to promote common sense changes, foster innovation, and improve safety for GA aircraft. The stated goal of the of the rewrite was to deliver “twice the safety at half the cost” in new aircraft by making newer designs easier to certify and safety-enhancing equipment easier to install.

“We are very pleased to see this final rule see the light of day, especially as EAA and other GA organizations worked very hard on the FAA’s advisory rulemaking committee to offer suggestions to boost the GA industry in the nation,” said Jack Pelton, EAA CEO and chairman. “The changes in Part 23 will allow new technology and better efficiency in designing, producing, maintaining, and operating today’s airplanes and create future GA designs. It ensures a favorable regulatory environment for GA in the future.”

The General Aviation Manufacturing Association led the GA group work on this Part 23 rewrite, with EAA, AOPA, and other groups closely allied with GAMA’s effort. In May, the GA groups together urged the FAA to release a final rule by the end of the year.

While the Part 23 rewrite greatly helps in the certification of new aircraft, certain aspects of it also help retrofit and maintenance of existing aircraft. EAA is leading the way in finding newer, more affordable ways to install safety-enhancing equipment in the legacy fleet. This initiative had its first major breakthrough earlier this year with the grant of EAA’s STC for the Dynon D10/D100 series as a replacement attitude indicator in certain aircraft, and work continues to certify TruTrak and Dynon autopilots for standard-category aircraft.

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