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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A319, A320, and A321 Series Airplanes

Action

Notice Of Proposed Rulemaking (Nprm).

Summary

We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This proposed AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as:

Two incidents [of near mid-air collision] have occurred on Airbus A320 Family aircraft during [a] Resolution Advisory [from the] Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS). One of the Human-Machine Interface (HMI) factors was the lack of visibility of relevant information on the Primary Flight Display (PFD).

This condition, if not corrected, could result in erroneous interpretation of TCAS Resolution Advisories, leading to an increased risk of mid-air collision.

* * * * *

Unified Agenda

Airworthiness Directives

1 action from November 2013

  • November 2013
    • Actions Will Continue Through
 

Table of Contents Back to Top

DATES: Back to Top

We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 14, 2009.

ADDRESSES: Back to Top

You may send comments by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
  • Fax: (202) 493-2251.
  • Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590.
  • Hand Delivery: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-40, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax +33 5 61 93 44 51; e-mail account.airworth-eas@airbus.com; Internet http://www.airbus.com. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221 or 425-227-1152.

Examining the AD Docket Back to Top

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov; or in person at the Docket Operations office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Back to Top

Tim Dulin, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-2141; fax (425) 227-1149.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Back to Top

Comments Invited Back to Top

We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2009-0649; Directorate Identifier 2008-NM-218-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD based on those comments.

We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this proposed AD.

Discussion Back to Top

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA Airworthiness Directive 2008-0198, dated November 4, 2008 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

Two incidents [of near mid-air collision] have occurred on Airbus A320 Family aircraft during [a] Resolution Advisory [from the] Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS). One of the Human-Machine Interface (HMI) factors was the lack of visibility of relevant information on the Primary Flight Display (PFD).

This condition, if not corrected, could result in erroneous interpretation of TCAS Resolution Advisories, leading to an increased risk of mid-air collision.

EIS1 [Electronic Instrument System] software standard V60 introduces modifications to the vertical speed indication to further improve the legibility in the case of TCAS Resolution Advisory. This modification consists of a change in the needle colour and thickness and an increase in width of the TCAS green band.

For the reasons described above, this AD requires the introduction of the new software standard V60 and prohibits reinstallation of earlier software versions V32, V40 and V50.

You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information Back to Top

Airbus has issued Mandatory Service Bulletin A320-31-1286, dated January 22, 2008. The actions described in this service information are intended to correct the unsafe condition identified in the MCAI.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of This Proposed AD Back to Top

This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, we have been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all pertinent information and determined an unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Differences Between This AD and the MCAI or Service Information Back to Top

We have reviewed the MCAI and related service information and, in general, agree with their substance. But we might have found it necessary to use different words from those in the MCAI to ensure the AD is clear for U.S. operators and is enforceable. In making these changes, we do not intend to differ substantively from the information provided in the MCAI and related service information.

We might also have proposed different actions in this AD from those in the MCAI in order to follow FAA policies. Any such differences are highlighted in a NOTE within the proposed AD.

Costs of Compliance Back to Top

Based on the service information, we estimate that this proposed AD would affect about 564 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 4 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $80 per work-hour. Required parts would cost about $0 per product. Where the service information lists required parts costs that are covered under warranty, we have assumed that there will be no charge for these costs. As we do not control warranty coverage for affected parties, some parties may incur costs higher than estimated here. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $180,480, or $320 per product.

Authority for This Rulemaking Back to Top

Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. “Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs,” describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in “Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

Regulatory Findings Back to Top

We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed regulation:

1. Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866;

2. Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979); and

3. Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

We prepared a regulatory evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Back to Top

The Proposed Amendment Back to Top

Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

begin regulatory text

PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES Back to Top

1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

Authority:

49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

§ 39.13 [Amended]

2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new AD:

Airbus: Docket No. FAA-2009-0649; Directorate Identifier 2008-NM-218-AD.

Comments Due Date Back to Top

(a) We must receive comments by August 14, 2009.

Affected ADs Back to Top

(b) None.

Applicability Back to Top

(c) This AD applies to Airbus Model A319-111, -112, -113, -114, -115, -131, -132, and -133 airplanes; Model A320-111, -211, -212, -214, -231, -232, and -233 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, and -232 airplanes; certificated in any category; all manufacturer serial numbers (MSN); equipped with Electronic Instrument System 1 (EIS1) standard V32 (Display Management Computer (DMC) Part Number (P/N) 9615325032), EIS1 standard V40 (DMC P/N 9615325040), or EIS1 standard V50 (DMC P/N 9615325050).

Subject Back to Top

(d) Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 31: Instruments.

Reason Back to Top

(e) The mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) states:

Two incidents [of near mid-air collision] have occurred on Airbus A320 Family aircraft during [a] Resolution Advisory [from the] Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS). One of the Human-Machine Interface (HMI) factors was the lack of visibility of relevant information on the Primary Flight Display (PFD).

This condition, if not corrected, could result in erroneous interpretation of TCAS Resolution Advisories, leading to an increased risk of mid-air collision.

EIS1 software standard V60 introduces modifications to the vertical speed indication to further improve the legibility in the case of TCAS Resolution Advisory. This modification consists of a change in the needle colour and thickness and an increase in width of the TCAS green band.

For the reasons described above, this AD requires the introduction of the new software standard V60 and prohibits reinstallation of earlier software versions V32, V40 and V50.

Actions and Compliance Back to Top

(f) Unless already done, do the following actions:

(1) Within 60 months after the effective date of this AD, modify the airplane by installing EIS1 software standard V60 (DMC P/N 9615325060) in accordance with the instructions of Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A320-31-1286, dated January 22, 2008.

(2) After modifying an airplane as required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, no person shall install EIS1 software standard V32 (DMC P/N 9615325032), EIS1 software standard V40 (DMC P/N 9615325040), or EIS1 software standard V50 (DMC P/N 9615325050) on that airplane.

FAA AD Differences Back to Top

Note 1:

This AD differs from the MCAI and/or service information as follows: No differences.

Other FAA AD Provisions Back to Top

(g) The following provisions also apply to this AD:

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Tim Dulin, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-2141; fax (425) 227-1149. Before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your principal maintenance inspector (PMI) or principal avionics inspector (PAI), as appropriate, or lacking a principal inspector, your local Flight Standards District Office.

(2) Airworthy Product: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer or other source, use these actions if they are FAA-approved. Corrective actions are considered FAA-approved if they are approved by the State of Design Authority (or their delegated agent). You are required to assure the product is airworthy before it is returned to service.

(3) Reporting Requirements: For any reporting requirement in this AD, under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the information collection requirements and has assigned OMB Control Number 2120-0056.

Related Information Back to Top

(h) Refer to MCAI European Aviation Safety Agency Airworthiness Directive 2008-0198, dated November 4, 2008; and Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A320-31-1286, dated January 22, 2008, for related information.

Issued in Renton, Washington, on July 9, 2009.

Ali Bahrami,

Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

end regulatory text

[FR Doc. E9-16778 Filed 7-14-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P

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