The new Part 23 rule will allow manufacturers and suppliers of products and technologies for small airplanes to develop and deliver innovative products to their customers more quickly and to better leverage new technologies. Rather than having to comply with overly prescriptive design requirements, manufacturers will now be able to more nimbly respond in a cost-effective manner through performance-based airworthiness safety rules and consensus standards for compliance.
In addition, because the new Part 23 rule is part of a global effort to develop common certification standards, it will remove regulatory barriers and promote the acceptance of airplanes and products worldwide. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) is also in the process of rewriting its CS-23 rule for small airplanes, and other authorities are expected to follow suit.
“Today is truly a landmark day for the general aviation industry,” GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce said. “This rule is nothing less than a total rethinking of how our industry can bring new models of pistons, diesels, turboprops, light jets, and new electric and hybrid propulsion airplanes to market, as well as facilitating safety-enhancing modifications and upgrades to the existing fleet. The new part 23 rule makes it easier for manufacturers to do so by reducing the time, cost, and risk involved in certification, while improving safety for customers.”
The rule completes the process called for in the Small Airplane Revitalization Act (SARA), which the U.S. Congress passed unanimously and President Obama signed into law in 2013. That legislation was based largely on the recommendations of the Part 23 Reorganization Aviation Rulemaking Committee, which GAMA co-chaired.
“The Part 23 rewrite would not have been possible without the dedication and tireless efforts of many in industry and the Federal Aviation Administration, the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the U.S. Office of Management and Budget,” Bunce continued. “We also want to thank SARA’s lead bipartisan sponsors, U.S. Representative Mike Pompeo (R-KS) and U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), for shepherding the legislation through Congress so effectively and quickly. This rulemaking shows how, when government and industry work together, we can accomplish truly great things, and we look forward to this continued cooperation as the rule is fully implemented."
“When red tape slowed down the ability of our small aircraft manufacturers, like Cirrus, to bring new products into the aviation market, I introduced bipartisan legislation that was signed into law to simplify the process for businesses and help our aviation sector grow and succeed,” Senator Klobuchar said. “After our efforts, I am pleased that the FAA has finalized the Part 23 rule for small airplanes, which will help our manufacturers compete globally and create the most innovative, advanced, and safest planes in the world.”
GAMA Chairman Simon Caldecott, who is also President and CEO of Piper Aircraft, said, “As the leader of an aircraft manufacturing company, I can tell you firsthand that the Part 23 rule will allow Piper to bring new safety-enhancing technologies to our products quicker, as well as more cost-effectively respond to certification safety requirements.”
“The new Part 23 rule is a great example of industry and government working together to improve safety and also to improve the introduction of new technology and advanced products,” remarked Brad Mottier, Vice President and General Manager of Business and General Aviation & Integrated Systems for GE Aviation.
Joe Brown, President of Hartzell Propeller Inc., added, “The Part 23 rewrite provides the framework to accelerate safety and innovation while also encouraging competition in general aviation—all things that Congress imagined in the Small Airplane Revitalization Act. I commend the FAA for meeting the legislative mandate with a sound regulatory system that encourages stakeholders to do what they do best. With the enhancements to Part 23, the general aviation industry is better positioned to bring improved products to market while also efficiently incorporating emerging or enhanced technology. In parallel, the FAA maintains its vital role in surveillance and oversight while deepening its risk-based methodology to improve safety.”