The FAA will be required by law to reform and streamline its regulations for certification of Part 23 aircraft and components by Dec. 31, 2015 after President Barack Obama signed the Small Airplane Revitalization Act (SARA) Wednesday, Nov. 27.
Part 23 outlines FAA standards
for regulating certification of most light civil aircraft weighing less than 12,500 pounds. Under the new law, the FAA must adopt consensus-based, design-specific standards with a greater focus on aircraft and systems-specific parameters, as opposed to the existing aircraft weight and propulsion type method.
The legislation will allow Part 23 avionics and aircraft manufacturers to get their products onto lighter general aviation jets quicker and at a much lower cost than they have been able to in the past.
"This law is a win for the government as well as general aviation airframers and suppliers, but more importantly, for the general aviation pilots and passengers who will be able to benefit more rapidly from new safety-enhancing technologies," said Pete Bunce, president and CEO of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA).
The focus of the new law is to double the safety of general aviation aircraft at half the cost of existing certification fees which are similar to the regulatory requirements on heavier, more complex and higher performing aircraft.