Leading up to the annual Experimental Aircraft Association AirVenture Oshkosh, the Federal Aviation Administration published the long-anticipated and often-discussed proposal to expand Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) opportunities: Modernization of Special Airworthiness Certification. While there has been significant media attention regarding this proposal, the NPRM is wide-ranging, affecting everybody from airports to airmen.
Affected by this proposal are 14 CFR Parts 1, 21, 22, 36, 43, 45, 61, 65, 91 and 119. The primary media attention has initially focused on Part 21, Certification Procedures for Products and Articles and the expansion of the aircraft that may be eligible for future certification as a Light Sport Aircraft; and Part 61, Certification: Pilots, Flight Instructors, and Ground Instructors with the expanded authority of a sport pilot.
Lost in the current noise of celebration are the changes to Part 1, which has a direct effect on every segment of aviation, including airports and FBOs; the establishment of Part 22, which sets the certification foundation for all future “consensus standard”-based aircraft certifications; the expansion of the environmental standards applicable to the initial certification and modification of all LSA; slight changes to Parts 43 and 45; significant changes to Parts 61 and 91 on the pilot certifications and flight operations; a change from a prescriptive hour-based approach to qualifying LSA repairmen to a performance-based approach more in line with certificated mechanics; and the introduction of commercial space to Part 119.
To read the NPRM, click here.
Comments must be submitted no later than Oct. 23, 2023.
This is an extremely complicated proposal that deserves a thorough review. The Aircraft Electronics Association will discuss the proposal at upcoming AEA Regionals in the United States. Also, look for an additional section-by-section review of the proposal in the October issue of Avionics News.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Contact Ric Peri, AEA vice president of government and industry affairs, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 202-589-1144.