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Sunday, August 1, 2010

FAA Updates Night Vision MMEL

The Federal Aviation Administration has issued a global revision to MMEL (master minimum equipment list) Policy Letter 127, which focuses on night vision imaging systems (NVIS), including night vision goggles (NVGs). According to FAA, around 40 percent of HEMS operators are equipped with NVIS through STC installations. Helicopters currently equipped with NVIS lighting are grounded when repairs are needed. The agency determined that “an acceptable level of safety is maintained for unaided (non-NVG) NVIS operations, not to exceed 10 days provided the defective NVIS lighting does not interfere with the pilot’s ability to see instruments, instrument markings, switch position and frequency settings, and annunciations.” The global policy change allows helicopters with defective NVIS lighting to “operate using MMEL relief day or night operations in VFR, IFR, as long as NVGs are not used.” (From August 2010 Rotorcraft Report)

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