8900.1 CHG 522


Indicates new/changed information.


Section 1  Safety Assurance System: EFVS Operations Application Evaluation

4-1689    REPORTING SYSTEM(S). The following tracking codes are used to document inspector activities during the evaluation of an Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS) application.

A.    Program Tracking and Reporting Subsystem (PTRS). Use PTRS activity codes for EFVS activities: 1439, 3440, and 5440.

B.    Safety Assurance System (SAS). For Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) parts 121 and 135 operations, the principal inspector (PI) will utilize this guidance related to SAS Elements 2.1.1, (OP) Training of Flight Crewmembers; 2.2.1, (OP) Airmen Duties/Flight Deck Procedures; 3.1.1, (OP) Training and Qualification of Dispatchers and Flight Followers; 3.3.2, (OP) Dispatch/Flight Release; and 4.6.1, (AW) Avionics Special Emphasis Programs.

4-1690    PURPOSE AND APPLICABILITY. This section provides references, information, and guidance for PIs and supporting aviation safety inspectors (ASI) to perform an evaluation of an operator’s application for the initial issuance or an amendment to operations specification (OpSpec)/management specification (MSpec)/letter of authorization (LOA) C048. An application is required for each certificate holder, program manager, or operator under part 91 subpart K (part 91K), 121, 125 (including part 125 Letter of Deviation Authority (A125 LODA) holders), or 135 who seeks authorization to conduct EFVS operations under part 91, § 91.176. Part 91 operators (other than part 91K) are required to submit an application for an LOA C048 in order to conduct operations under § 91.176(a). Part 91 operators conducting operations under § 91.176(b) may submit an application for an optional LOA C048 in order to facilitate foreign civil aviation authority (CAA) approvals.

4-1691    BACKGROUND. Regulations permit pilots to descend below decision altitude (DA)/decision height (DH) or minimum descent altitude (MDA) using a certified EFVS to conduct an EFVS operation on certain instrument approach procedures (IAP). EFVS operations require Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) authorization, which begins with an FAA evaluation described in this section. Additional provisions provided through the authorization allow certificate holders operating under part 121, 125, 125 A125 LODA holder, or 135 to:

    Use EFVS operational minimums to dispatch, release, or takeoff a flight when the forecast visibility is below the visibility minimums prescribed in the IAP; or

    Use EFVS operational minimums to begin the Final Approach Segment (FAS) when the current reported visibility is below the visibility minimums prescribed in the IAP.

NOTE:  Operators issued C048 authorizing EFVS operations under § 91.175(l) and (m) have until March 13, 2018 to apply for reissuance of the updated C048 EFVS authorization required by § 91.176. On March 13, 2018, § 91.175(l) and (m) will be removed from 14 CFR.

4-1692    GENERAL. The guidance in this paragraph provides an overview of the EFVS evaluation process. The following describes the roles and responsibilities of the FAA personnel and lists and describes the references that must be used to complete a thorough evaluation. Paragraph 4-1689 lists the tracking codes to be used during the evaluation.

A.    Responsibilities.

1)    Principal Operations Inspectors (POI). POIs assigned to evaluate an EFVS application are responsible for managing the evaluation process, coordinating the review and evaluation of the submitted EFVS application with other assigned PIs and ASIs, initiating FAA internal coordination when required, and issuing the authorization.
2)    The Flight Technologies and Procedures Division (AFS-400). AFS-400 is responsible for providing the technical and policy support and consultation to the inspectors conducting the evaluation and coordinating with other headquarters (HQ) divisions, as applicable.

B.    Resources. The following are the primary references for inspectors conducting an EFVS application evaluation:

1)    Advisory Circular (AC) 90-106, Enhanced Flight Vision Systems. The AC describes EFVS operations, information and documentation operators should include in an application, and the expectations for demonstration during an evaluation. Inspectors must use the AC as the primary reference to help determine if operators have met FAA expectations during the evaluation of an application.
2)    Volume 3, Chapter 1, The General Process for Approval or Acceptance of Air Operator Applications. Inspectors must use this as a general guideline for conducting the evaluation of an application. The FAA five-phase process will be used for all EFVS evaluations.
3)    Volume 3, Chapter 18, Section 5, Part C Operations Specifications—Airplane Terminal Instrument Procedures and Airport Authorizations and Limitations. Inspectors must use this guidance after completion of a successful evaluation to properly issue the appropriate authorization.
4)    Flight Standardization Board (FSB) Reports and Operational Suitability Reports (OSR). These reports may contain additional training, checking, and currency recommendations for an installed EFVS. Reports are posted in the Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS).
5)    Airplane Flight Manual (AFM)/Rotorcraft Flight Manual (RFM) or Supplement (AFMS/RFMS). The AFM/RFM contains information pertaining to the certification of an EFVS.
6)    AFS-400. AFS-400 is the policy division for EFVS and operator authorizations. The EFVS focal point listed on the following Flight Operations Branch’s (AFS-410) website should be contacted for technical support or when directed by guidance: https://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/avs/offices/afs/afs400/afs410/efvs/.

4-1693    EFVS APPLICATION EVALUATION. PIs must use the five-phase process described in Volume 3, Chapter 1, Section 1 as a general guideline for evaluating all EFVS authorization applications, to include applications to amend an existing authorization. The following is supplemental information specific to an EFVS operations authorization.

A.    Phase 1. FAA personnel responsible for evaluating any part of an EFVS application must be familiar with the contents of AC 90-106 to ensure there is an understanding of EFVS operations and operator expectations during the application and evaluation process.

1)    If an operator provides an alternate means to obtain EFVS operational authorization, AFS‑400 should be consulted to determine the acceptability of the proposal.
2)    Part 91 operators (other than part 91K) may request to have EFVS operations under § 91.176(b) annotated in an LOA (i.e., to facilitate EFVS operational approvals issued by foreign CAAs). In this case, no formal evaluation is required. Volume 3, Chapter 1, Section 1 provides administrative instructions for proper issuance of the authorization.
3)    Operators issued C048 for operations under § 91.175(l) and (m) seeking similar operational authorization to conduct EFVS operations under § 91.176(b) with the same airplane make, model, and series (M/M/S) and EFVS do not require further evaluation. However, applications seeking to add provisions to use EFVS operational minimums will need further evaluation.

B.    Phase 2. POIs must initiate coordination with the AFS-400 EFVS focal point when an applicant presents a means to obtain EFVS authorization that is not described in AC 90-106 or requests authorization to use EFVS operational minimums.

C.    Phase 3. PIs must ensure that all information and documentation recommended in AC 90-106 are adequately addressed in the operator’s submission.

D.    Phase 4. The PIs must determine if the operator successfully demonstrates the ability to safely conduct the proposed EFVS operations. The operator’s proposed demonstration plan should be designed to meet the FAA expectations outlined in AC 90-106. Inspectors should use the information in the AC and the following information to evaluate an operator’s demonstration proposal:

1)    A demonstration must be conducted any time an operator submits an application to authorize EFVS operations for a specific airplane M/M/S equipped with an EFVS.
2)    POIs should issue an authorization to allow the operator to demonstrate EFVS operations during the demonstration phase. Volume 3, Chapter 18, Section 5 provides POIs with administrative instructions for proper issuance. AFS-400 is available to assist in issuance of the authorization.
3)    Inspectors may consider unique demonstration plans proposed by operators with particular operations. Certain scenarios are described in AC 90-106. The POI should consult with AFS-400 if they are unsure if a proposal meets the intent of AC 90-106.
4)    PIs must review the required operator-generated monthly report specified in AC 90-106. POIs must take corrective action as necessary if they do not have sufficient confidence in the operator’s maintenance reliability and procedural proficiency.
5)    The POI determines when the demonstration objectives specified in AC 90-106 have been successfully met. The POI may extend a demonstration if necessary.

E.    Phase 5. After the successful completion of the demonstration, the issuance of the EFVS operations authorization in Phase 4 with any necessary adjustments is validated.

RESERVED. Paragraphs 4-1694 through 4-1708.