Staff Instruction (SI) No. 500-004

Development, Approval and Publication of Special Conditions - Airworthiness   

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Issuing Office: Standards Document No.: SI 500-004
File Classification No.: Z 5000-32 Issue No.: 02
RDIMS No.: 5309383-V21 Effective Date: 2011-10-03

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Purpose

(1) The purpose of this Staff Instruction (SI) is to provide criteria and procedural guidelines associated with the development, approval and publication of Special Conditions – Airworthiness (SCA).

1.2 Guidance Applicability

(1) This SI is applicable to Headquarters (HQ) and Regional Aircraft Certification personnel, including delegates.

1.3 Description of Changes

(1) From issue 01 to issue 02, this document’s title  was updated from Special Conditions – Airworthiness (SCA) to Development, Approval and Publication of Special Conditions - Airworthiness.

(2) The content of the document has been updated to reflect changes in requirements and terminologies that have resulted from implementation of Part V Subpart 21 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs), known as CAR 521.

(3) This document is also updated at this time to address:

(a) that SCAs are applicant specific; and

(b) Exemptions cannot be granted against a SCA.

2.0 REFERENCES AND REQUIREMENTS

2.1 Reference Documents

(1) It is intended that the following reference materials be used in conjunction with this document:

(a) Aeronautics Act

(b) Part V, Subpart 21 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) –- Approval of the Type Design or a Change to the Type Design of an Aeronautical Product; and

(c) Airworthiness Manual (AWM).

2.2 Cancelled Documents

(1) Not applicable.

Note:

By default, it is understood that the publication of a new issue of a document automatically renders any earlier issues of the same document null and void.

2.3 Definitions and Abbreviations

(1) Not applicable.

3.0 BACKGROUND

(1) Paragraph 521.30(1)(c) of the CARs specifies that a new type design requiring the introduction of special conditions, provides a level of safety equivalent to the level that would result from compliance with the standards of airworthiness in force on the date of application for the type certificate.

(2) Existing standards may be inadequate to address the novel or unusual design features of an aeronautical product. Paragraph 521.30(1)(c) of the CARs provide for the development of suitable standards to facilitate the type certification or approval of a given product, or the approval of a design change.

4.0 SPECIAL CONDITION DEVELOPMENT

4.1 Conditions for the Issuance of a Special Condition

(1) A special condition may be issued where necessary to ensure that the type design of an aeronautical product having a novel or unusual design feature provides a level of safety equivalent to that provided by the standards of airworthiness in force on the date of application for the type certificate. For example, the applicant proposes to install dynamic air filters on an engine air inlet to separate sand and foreign object debris from the engine inlet air, using a filtering method that is entirely different than that of the original manufacturer supplied filter. Therefore, this new filter installation is considered to have novel design features, requiring a special condition to be issued. This special condition will require compliance with subsection 527.1093(b) of the AWM, at an amendment level that provides a level of safety equivalent to that of the existing certification basis.

(2) A special condition may also be added in the case of a product certified to an earlier airworthiness standard such as Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Civil Air Regulation 6 and 7 for rotorcraft, where a modification being incorporated was not envisioned at the time the standards were developed.

(3) SCAs are requirements issued under the conditions of Paragraph 521.30(1)(c) and Subsection 521.158(7) of the CARs.  The proposed standards in the SCA are discussed and vetted between Transport Canada, Civil Aviation (TCCA) and the applicant to ensure that an SCA, once issued, is adequate and that the applicant can meet all the requirements of the SCA. Once an SCA is issued, an applicant cannot petition for an exemption against it. Compliance with an SCA is a mandatory regulatory requirement, and becomes part of the approved certification basis of the aeronautical product.

(4) An SCA is issued for an aeronautical product that is the subject of an approval request by an applicant.  Therefore, an SCA is product and applicant specific.  If the same aeronautical product is the subject of a similar approval request by a different applicant, a different SCA document would have to be issued against that product, for that applicant.

4.2 Required Information

(1) The following information, as a minimum, will be used to evaluate the suitability of the proposed standards for the issuance of a special condition:

(a) A general description of the aeronautical product involved;

(b) The certification basis for the aeronautical product;

(c) Where the issuance of a special condition is requested because of novel or unusual design features, a detailed description of those characteristics; and

(d) A detailed description and discussion of the proposed standards of airworthiness, which will form the basis of the special condition.

4.3 Content of a special condition

(1) The following principles are to be applied with respect to the development of a special condition:

(a) A special condition shall:

(i) Contain only minimum design and performance standards necessary to provide a level of safety equal to that established by the applicable standards specified in subsections 521.30(1) and 521.158(1) of the CARs, which are to be outlined in the pertinent certification compliance document;

(ii) Be regulatory in nature. It shall not contain advisory or procedural content; and

(iii) Be written according to the template shown in Appendix A.

(b) A special condition is not intended to:

(i) Include extraneous obligations or provisions for the manufacture or inspection of equipment not defined by the certification requirements;

(ii) Contain installation criteria unless the installation requirements are critical to ensure continued proper operation of the product;

Note: 

Installation instructions for non-essential equipment or components are usually contained in the maintenance documentation.

(iii) Repeat standards that are already contained in the AWM.  The special condition can however, ensure compliance with:

(A) In the case of an application for a new type certificate, the standards of airworthiness that are in force on the date of the application for the proposed change; or

(B) In the case of an application for an amendment to a type certificate, or supplemental type certificate (STC) a later standard that achieves a level of safety equivalent to that established by agreed standards in the existing or proposed certification basis by referencing them in a special condition.

(iv) Be issued for general upgrading of the applicable standards of airworthiness to achieve a higher level of safety than that of the existing or proposed certification basis.  The need for a higher level of safety in all type designs is to be achieved through the Canadian Aviation Regulation Advisory Council (CARAC) process, by developing a Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) and consulting with the Aviation Industry;

Note:

If Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) deems that a higher level of safety is warranted and the applicant refuses to comply with later standards that can provide the desired level of safety, TCCA may refuse to issue a certificate. Section 6.71 of the Aeronautics Act, invoked by subsection 521.57(1) and subsections 521.161 and 521.206 of the CARs, provides for this refusal on the grounds of public interest. Public interest is served when TCCA exercises judgment that a proposed design change may have an unsafe feature or condition when certified and installed to earlier standards of airworthiness.

(v) Contain the description of testing rigs, etc., unless it is relevant to obtain repeatability and to prove specific performance data;

(vi) Contain proprietary information, unless the applicant’s agreement is obtained, since it may result in a competitive disadvantage to the original holder of the data; or

(vii) Contain operational requirements or performance standards.

5.0 SPECIAL CONDITION DEVELOPMENT - STANDARDS BRANCH

5.1 Application

(1) When the issuance of a special condition is required according to the criteria outlined in section 4.1 of this SI, the information specified in section 4.2 of this SI should be submitted directly, or through the responsible Manager, to the Aircraft Certification Standards Division for review.

5.2 Processing Procedures

(1) When a special condition is required, Domestic Regulations will:

(a) Review the applicable information, and lead or participate in technical discussions as necessary to determine the need for, and the regulatory content of, the special condition;

(b) Draft the special condition following the criteria outlined in section 4.3 of this SI. The draft will be written with the assistance of the appropriate HQ specialists, and when complete, be circulated to responsible parties for comment. The Project Manager will send a copy of the draft special condition to the applicant for further discussion. Persons solicited to comment should provide their input to the Manager, to the Aircraft Certification Standards Division;

Note:

The Project Manager is responsible for recording on a G-2 Issue Paper both TCCA’s and the applicant’s position as the special condition is being developed.

(c) Consider comments, make any appropriate changes and prepare the final special condition for specialist’s sign-off and approval by the Chief, Aircraft Certification, Standards Division;

(d) Provide the responsible Project Manager with copies of the approved special condition for transmission to the applicant; and

(e) File the special condition and applicable correspondence in accordance with section 9.0 of this SI.

6.0  SPECIAL CONDITION DEVELOPMENT - REGIONAL AIRCRAFT CERTIFICATION

6.1  Applicantion

(1) When the issuance of a special condition is required according to the criteria outlined in section 4.1 of this SI, the information specified in section 4.2 of this SI is to be submitted by the Regional Aircraft Certification Engineer to the Aircraft Certification Standards Division, Domestic Regulations for approval and issuance.

Note:

Since special conditions are Standards of Airworthiness that form part of the CARs, Domestic Regulations must remain the focal coordination point for the approval and issuance of all special conditions. The Chief, Aircraft Certification Standards must approve all special conditions.

6.2 Processing Procedures

(1) Upon receipt of a request or determination that a special condition is needed, the Regional Aircraft Certification Engineer will:

(a) Review the applicable information, consult with appropriate specialists in the National Aircraft Certification Branch, and lead or participate in technical discussions as necessary to determine the need for, and the regulatory content of, the special condition;

(b) Draft the special conditionfollowing the criteria outlined in section 4.3 of this SI. The draft will be written with the assistance of the appropriate specialists, and when complete, be circulated to responsible parties for comment. The Regional Aircraft Certification Engineer will send a copy of the draft special condition to the applicant for further discussion. Persons solicited to comment should provide their inputs to the responsible Regional Aircraft Certification Engineer;

Note: 

The Project Manager is responsible for recording on a G-2 Issue Paper both TCCA’s and the applicant’s position as the special condition is being developed.

(c) Consider comments, make any appropriate changes and prepare the draft special conditionfor specialist’s sign-off. The special conditionshall then be forwarded to Domestic Regulations who will coordinate approval by the Chief, Aircraft Certification Standards, and subsequently issue the formal special condition. Domestic Regulations will return the issued special condition to the Region, and file the applicable correspondence in accordance with section 9.0 of this SI; and

(d) Provide a copy of the approved special condition to the applicant.

7.0 Special Conditions – Airworthiness Numbering Format

(1) The special condition number will be assigned by Domestic Regulations and will be comprised of the following elements:

Note:

The Manager, Domestic Regulations maintains a database and keeps a copy of all special conditions issued by both HQ and the Regional Offices. This central collection of special conditions is required for future reference and for generating a list of special conditions for internet and intranet publication.

(a) Four digits corresponding to the year of the approval date; and

Note:

Special conditions issued previously may have used two-digits to represent the year of approval. They may also have had a regional or headquarters identifier. Subsequent revisions will require the numbering to be updated to the current system.

(b) A hyphen and sequential number, beginning with 01.

Examples:

(i) special condition 2003-05 (fifth special condition issued in year 2003); and

(ii) special condition 2002-01 (first special condition issued in year 2002)

8.0 SPECIAL CONDITION RECORDING - BASIS OF CERTIFICATION

(1) The HQ Project Manager or Regional Engineer will ensure that the special condition is recorded as an integral part of the certification basis for the type design of the aeronautical product.

9.0 FILING RQUIREMENTS

(1) The Manager, Domestic Regulations will:

(a) Place a signed copy of the special condition in the files maintained by the Division, using the following convention for file numbers: “5009-6-5XX-3”, where the “5XX” refers to the specific design standard from the AWM; and

(b) Ensure that the formal special condition and applicable correspondence is entered into the Records Document and Information Management System (RDIMS).

Note: 

For ease of searching, the RDIMS document naming convention should state the special condition number, followed by the subject title.

Examples:

(i) special condition 2003-01 Zenair Model CH-2000 Inflatable Restraint System;

(ii) special condition 2003-01 Correspondence; and

(iii) The RDIMS document number for the French version of the special condition will be different from that of the English document. The RDIMS document number of each should be cross-referenced in the other RDIMS document profile.  In addition, all revisions to previously issued special conditions will be published using a new RDIMS document number; the new number should be cross-referenced to the previous version’s profile.

10.0 REVISIONS

(1) Subsequent changes required to a special condition shall be actioned according to the procedures outlined in sections 5.0 or 6.0 of this SI. The special condition will be reissued with a new date, using a revision code (e.g. A, B, C), and be filed in RDIMS with a new document number.

Examples:

(i) special condition 2003-05B (second revision);

(ii) special condition 2002-01A (first revision)

11.0 DISTRIBUTION

(1) Copies of special conditions are available upon request to the Manager, Domestic Regulations who maintains a central collection of all special conditions issued. A list of approved special conditions is available in electronic form on the Internet.

12.0 CONTACT office

Suggestions for amendment to this document are invited, and should be submitted via
e-mail at: AARTInfoDoc@tc.gc.ca

[original signed by Eric Lucas for]

Jacqueline Booth
A/Director, Standards
Civil Aviation
Transport Canada

APPENDIX A— Special Conditions—Airworthiness

Canadian

Special Conditions – Airworthiness

File No.:

5010-XX

SCA No.:

YYYY-XX(X)

Airworthiness Manual File:

5009-6-5XX

Issue Date:

2003-05-XX

RDIMS No.:

XXXXXX-VX

This Special Condition-Airworthiness is issued pursuant to paragraph 521.30(c), and subsection 521.158(7)  of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) with respect to the standards of airworthiness for which the Minister will issue a type certificate:

(Aeronautical product manufacturer/Aircraft manufacturer and model)

(Aeronautical product name)

1.0 General

2.0 Background and Discussion

3.0 Airworthiness Requirements

1)

a)

3.1

1)

a)

i)

Chief, Aircraft Certification Standards
Standards Branch

APPENDIX B - SPECIAL CONDITIONS - AIRWORTHINESS FLOWCHART

500-004
Date modified: