FAA Accepts ASTM Standards for Part 23 Aircraft

An alternate means for light aircraft certification is in the books.

Pipistrel Panthera
With ASTM International consensus standards, certification of light aircraft such as the Pipistrel Panthera could become easier.Pipi

The introduction of new aircraft might have just become a lot easier. The FAA has accepted ASTM International standards as a means of certification for Part 23 aircraft. A new rule published by the FAA on May 11 allows for 63 Means of Compliance based on 30 ASTM consensus standards related to general aviation aircraft. The standards for general aviation aircraft were developed by ASTM Committee F44, which includes 250 members from 22 countries.

The committee came out of the Part 23 Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC), which aimed to streamline certification standards to reduce the regulatory burden on the industry and reduce the cost of aircraft certification.

Part 23 regulations will continue to be used as a means of certification, but the administrator has deemed the ASTM standards to provide “at least the same level of safety as the corresponding requirements in part 23, amendment 23-64.”

For the past few years, the FAA has allowed ASTM consensus standards as a means of certification for Light Sport Aircraft. The agency has also made provisions within part 23 to streamline the certification of safety components such as angle-of-attack indicators. The catalyst for these changes was the Small Airplane Revitalization Act of 2013.

While the rule has already been published, it has a comment period that ends on July 10.