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Aviation Standards Topic of FAA/ASTM International Briefing

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Executives from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) met with ASTM International members and staff at this year’s Airventure - a premier show and convention in the aviation world, hosted by the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA). The briefing provided an update to the FAA on the status of ASTM’s standards initiatives in the aviation sector. Among the representatives for the FAA were administrator Marion Blakey, assistant administrator Nick Sabatini, and director of aircraft certification service John Hickey. Information was presented together by ASTM International staff and the chairmen of ASTM Committees F37 on Light Sport Aircraft, F38 on Unmanned Air Vehicle Systems, and F39 on Normal and Utility Category Airplane Electrical Wiring Systems.

The July 28th meeting focused on the ongoing partnership between the FAA and ASTM International, which has led to outstanding successes in aviation standards initiatives to promulgate standards references for FAA regulatory programs. This includes the portfolio of 24 standards developed by ASTM Committee F37 in 36 months, the one standard and six ongoing drafts developed by ASTM Committee F39 in the past year, and the three standards and 15 drafts by ASTM Committee F38 over the past 18 months. More recently, the FAA had expressed its pleasure with the ability of the F37 program to modify some seven standards over the course of approximately 60 days in order to support regulatory changes.

At the conclusion of the meeting, the Administration acknowledged the unprecedented successes in standards development and a desire to continue to work forward with ASTM International where appropriate. What had been released in a press briefing earlier in the day was reinforced - that the speed and integrity of the ASTM International process satisfies FAA objectives of safety and industry responsiveness - making for a far better regulatory environment than rule-making alone. Follow up would be in the form of providing further education on standards systems to FAA staff, so that ASTM programs can continue to service the safety and technical needs of the Administration most effectively. These standardization initiatives, in support of the aviation industry’s needs from both a private and public sector perspective, have played a key role in helping entire segments of the aviation community to take flight.

Organized in 2002, ASTM Committee F37 was formed to respond to the FAAs call for the recreational aircraft industry to develop consensus standards. Committee F38 was organized in 2003 to address issues related to design, performance, quality acceptance tests, and safety monitoring for unmanned air vehicle systems. Committee F39, formed in 2004, is designed to develop standards for electrical wiring system design, fabrication, modification, inspection and maintenance procedures and processes for aging aircraft electrical wiring systems. The representation within these committees includes active FAA participation in concert with all interested stakeholders - aircraft and parts manufacturers, instructors, user groups, pilots, and regulatory representatives.

For more information about Committee F37 and its standards development work, contact Daniel Schultz, ASTM International (phone: 610/832-9716; dschultz@astm.org); or visit the F37 website at www.astm.org/COMMIT/F37.htm.

Release #7216

Committee: 
F37