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Volume 10 Air Transportation Oversight System

Chapter 1 General

Section 3 The Certification Process for 14 CFR Part 121 Air Carriers

10-42    INTRODUCTION. This section provides a high level overview of the certification process of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 121 air carriers. Detailed certification information can be found in Chapter 2, Procedures for Design and Performance Assessment, (found in this section) and in Chapter 6, Sections 1 and 2 of this volume.

10-43    CERTIFICATION PROCESS. The certification process consists of four phases and three gates (see Figure 10‑8). A phase separates the certification process into related activities supporting a specific function. A gate is a set of prerequisites that must be met before proceeding to the next step. The process uses a structured, system safety-based approach to air carrier certification that assesses the design and performance of the applicantís systems. This approach reviews the air carrierís systems as an integrated whole rather than as separate parts. It incorporates the system safety concepts embodied within ATOS. The process uses two types of Data Collection Tools (DCT): Safety Attribute Inspections (SAI) and Element Performance Inspections (EPI). SAIs are used to collect data that help determine if the air carrierís systems are designed to meet all regulatory requirements before Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval or acceptance. EPIs are used to collect data that help determine if the air carrierís systems are performing as designed and are producing the intended results. During the certification process, the certificate-holding district office (CHDO) and AFS-900 will form a Certification Project Team (CPT).

10-44    CERTIFICATION PROCESS DOCUMENT (CPD). The CPD, an appendix to this volume, provides step by step guidance to the CPT as they progress through the certification process. The CPD also provides links to detailed certification instructions, sample letters, forms, and briefings.

10-45    PROJECT MANAGEMENT TOOL (PMT). The PMT is an automated, Web-based tool accessible only to the CPT. It is used to schedule certification tasks, manage work flow, document completion of tasks, monitor the status of the project, and store information used during the certification project.

Figure 10-8, Phases and Gates for Initial Certification

RESERVED. Paragraphs 10‑46 through 10‑60.