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Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A330-243F Airplanes Equipped With Rolls Royce Trent 700 Series Engines

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION:

Final rule; request for comments.

SUMMARY:

We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This 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:

During flight tests, unexpected fatigue high loads were measured on the hinges integrated on the 12 o'clock beam which form the upper extreme edge of the thrust reverser unit C duct.

This situation, if not corrected, could lead to the separation of the thrust reverser from the aeroplane and therefore to damage of the aeroplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.

* * * * *

This AD requires actions that are intended to address the unsafe condition described in the MCAI.

DATES:

This AD becomes effective October 27, 2011.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in the AD as of October 27, 2011.

We must receive comments on this AD by November 28, 2011.

ADDRESSES:

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 W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Examining the AD Docket

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 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.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Vladimir Ulyanov, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1138; fax (425) 227-1149.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA Airworthiness Directive 2010-0187, dated September 21, 2010 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

During flight tests, unexpected fatigue high loads were measured on the hinges integrated on the 12 o'clock beam which form the upper extreme edge of the thrust reverser unit C duct.

This situation, if not corrected, could lead to the separation of the thrust reverser from the aeroplane and therefore to damage of the aeroplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.

DGAC [Directorate General for Civil Aviation] AD F-1997-118-047 was issued to prevent structural damage of the thrust reversers.

This [EASA] AD, which supersedes DGAC AD F-1997-118-047R2 [which corresponds with FAA AD 2001-09-14, Amendment 39-12221 (66 FR 23838, May 10, 2001] * * * is issued to extend the applicability to the newly certified model A330-243F.

Required actions include repetitive general visual inspections for cracks of the hinge assemblies and along the beam structure of the right and left engine thrust reversers, detailed inspection for cracking of hinges 2, 3, 4, and 5 of the left and right thrust reversers if no cracking is found during any general inspection, and replacing the affected thrust reverser of each engine if any crack is found. You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information

Airbus has issued Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, including Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009. 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 AD

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 issuing this AD because we evaluated all pertinent information and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

There are no products of this type currently registered in the United States. However, this rule is necessary to ensure that the described unsafe condition is addressed if any of these Start Printed Page 63160products are placed on the U.S. Register in the future.

Differences Between the AD and the MCAI or Service Information

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 required 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 AD.

FAA's Determination of the Effective Date

Since there are currently no domestic operators of this product, notice and opportunity for public comment before issuing this AD are unnecessary.

Comments Invited

This AD is a final rule that involves requirements affecting flight safety, and we did not precede it by notice and opportunity for public comment. We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2011-0999; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-235-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this AD because of 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 AD.

Authority for This Rulemaking

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

We determined that this AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This AD will 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 AD:

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 AD and placed it in the AD docket.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

End List of Subjects

Adoption of the Amendment

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

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PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

End Part Start Amendment Part

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

End Amendment Part Start Authority

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

End Authority
[Amended]
Start Amendment Part

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

End Amendment Part

2011-21-02 Airbus: Amendment 39-16825. Docket No. FAA-2011-0999; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-235-AD.

Effective Date

(a) This airworthiness directive (AD) becomes effective October 27, 2011.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to Airbus Model A330-243F airplanes; certificated in any category; equipped with Rolls Royce Trent 700 series engines.

Subject

(d) Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 78: Engine Exhaust.

Reason

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

During flight tests, unexpected fatigue high loads were measured on the hinges integrated on the 12 o'clock beam which form the upper extreme edge of the thrust reverser unit C duct.

This situation, if not corrected, could lead to the separation of the thrust reverser from the aeroplane and therefore to damage of the aeroplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.

* * * * *

Compliance

(f) You are responsible for having the actions required by this AD performed within the compliance times specified, unless the actions have already been done.

Actions

(g) At the applicable initial and repetitive times specified in paragraph (g)(1) or (g)(2) of this AD, perform a general visual inspection of the hinge assemblies and along the beam structure of the right and left engine thrust reversers for cracks, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, excluding Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009.

(1) For airplanes on which neither Airbus modification 46879 nor Airbus modification 47358 have been embodied in production: Do the inspection before the accumulation of 1,200 total flight cycles after the first flight of the airplane or within 3 months after the effective date of the AD, whichever occurs later. Thereafter, do the inspection at intervals not to exceed 1,200 flight cycles.

(2) For airplanes on which either Airbus modification 46879 or Airbus modification 47358 have been embodied in production: Do the inspection before the accumulation 2,000 total flight cycles after the first flight of the airplane, or within 3 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later. Thereafter, do the inspection at intervals not to exceed 2,000 flight cycles.

(h) If no crack is found during the general visual inspection required by paragraph (g) of this AD, before further flight, perform a detailed inspection of hinges 2, 3, 4, and 5 of the right and left thrust reversers for cracks, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, excluding Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009. If no crack is found during the detailed inspection, repeat the general visual inspection required by paragraph (g) of this AD at the intervals specified in paragraphs (g)(1) or (g)(2) of this AD, as applicable.

(i) If any cracking is found during any inspection required by paragraph (g) or (h) of Start Printed Page 63161this AD: Before further flight, replace the affected thrust reverser, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, excluding Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009. Repeat the general visual inspection required by paragraph (g) of this AD at the intervals specified in paragraphs (g)(1) or (g)(2) of this AD, as applicable.

FAA AD Differences

Note 1:

This AD differs from the MCAI and/or service information as follows:

Although European Aviation Safety Agency Airworthiness Directive (EASA) 2010-0187, dated September 21, 2010, is applicable to Airbus Model A330-243, -243F, -341, -342, and -343 airplanes, this AD applies to only A330-243F airplanes. The unsafe condition for Model A330-243, -341, -342, and -343 airplanes is addressed in FAA AD 2001-09-14, amendment 39-12221 (66 FR 23838, May 10, 2001).

Other FAA AD Provisions

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

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of ANM-116, send it to ATTN: Vladimir Ulyanov, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1138; fax (425) 227-1149. Information may be e-mailed to: 9-ANM-116-AMOC-REQUESTS@faa.gov. Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office. The AMOC approval letter must specifically reference this AD.

(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.

Related Information

(k) Refer to MCAI EASA Airworthiness Directive 2010-0187, dated September 21, 2010; and Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, excluding Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009; for related information.

Material Incorporated by Reference

(l) You must use Airbus Mandatory Service Bulletin A330-78-3006, Revision 09, excluding Appendix 1, dated October 21, 2009, to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

(1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of this service information under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

(2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus SAS—Airworthiness Office—EAL, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax +33 5 61 93 45 80; e-mail airworthiness.A330-A340@airbus.com; Internet http://www.airbus.com.

(3) You may review copies of the 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.

(4) You may also review copies of the service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/​federal_​register/​code_​of_​federal_​regulations/​ibr_​locations.html.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on September 23, 2011.

Ali Bahrami,

Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2011-25778 Filed 10-11-11; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P