[Avionics Magazine 11-21-2016] The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has issued a Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) to establish new Electronic Flight Bags (EFBs) regulation. EASA is using the NPA to introduce an operational approval for the use of EFB applications by Commercial Air Transport (CAT) operators and to introduce proportionate EFB provisions for Non-Commercial Operations with Complex Motor-Powered Aircraft (NCC), Non-Commercial Operations with Other-Than-Complex Motor-Powered Aircraft (NCO), and Specialized Operations (SPO) operators.
Airbus Electronic Flight Bag solution “FlySmart with Airbus.” Photo: Airbus.
“The main issue to be addressed by this NPA is level playing field,” EASA states in the NPA. This level playing field issue is linked with the following conditions:
• There is a lack of requirements in the area of EFBs, as only AMC 20-25 is available;
• There are currently no provisions for the use of EFBs in NCC, NCO and SPO, as Acceptable Means of Compliance (AMC) 20-25 is only applicable to CAT operations;
• The current ICAO provisions for EFBs in Annex 6 Part I, II and III, applicable since November 2014, have not yet been transposed into the European regulatory framework.
Within the NPA, EASA has also proposed the introduction of a new Implementing Regulation (IR) focusing on the regulation of EFB hardware and the level of risk assessment, procedures and training requirements that must be developed by an operator using EFBs in commercial and non-commercial aircraft operations. The new IR would also introduce a new AMC that would focus on risk assessment associated with EFBs, specifically focusing on human factors aspects to be considered. The deadline for comments on the NPA is Jan. 6, 2017.