FAA publishes proposed revision to Part 23

The Federal Aviation Administration issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) proposing a complete revision to the Airworthiness Standards for Normal, Utility, Acrobatic, and Commuter Category Airplanes.

The FAA proposes a complete rewrite to its airworthiness standards for normal, utility, acrobatic, and commuter category airplanes by removing current prescriptive design requirements and replacing them with performance-based airworthiness standards. The proposal separates the fundamental safety standards from the methods of compliance.

The proposed standards would also replace the current weight and propulsion divisions in small airplane regulations with performance- and risk-based divisions for airplanes with a maximum seating capacity of 19 passengers or less and a maximum takeoff weight of 19,000 pounds or less.

The proposed airworthiness standards are based on, and would maintain, the level of safety of the current small airplane regulations. Finally, the FAA proposes to adopt additional airworthiness standards to address certification for flight in icing conditions, enhanced stall characteristics, and minimum control speed to prevent departure from controlled flight for multiengine airplanes. This notice of proposed rulemaking addresses the congressional mandate set forth in the Small Airplane Revitalization Act of 2013.

In its desire to expedite the final rule, the FAA requests that comments must be received before May 13, 2016.

To fully understand the impact of this proposed rule, the Aircraft Electronics Association will be providing a complete review of the NPRM at the Friday Regulatory Rise and Shine session during the 2016 AEA International Convention & Trade Show, which takes place April 27-30 in Orlando, Florida. 

The AEA also will provide a progressive review of the NPRM on its website over the next several weeks.

Contact Ric Peri, AEA vice president of government and industry affairs, by email at ricp@aea.net or by phone at 202-589-1144.