N 8900.451


National Policy

Effective Date:



Cancellation Date: 2/20/19



Policy Change for Applicants/Certificate Holders Submitting Information Using the SAS External Portal and Data Collection Tools

1.    Purpose of This Notice. This notice supplements current policy and removes requirements for applicants and certificate holders to use the Safety Assurance System (SAS) external portal and Data Collection Tools (DCT). The changes impact the following policy contained within Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Order 8900.1:

    Volume 2, Chapter 3, The Certification Process—Title 14 CFR Part 121;

    Volume 2, Chapter 4, The Certification Process—Title 14 CFR Part 135;

    Volume 2, Chapter 11, Certification of a Part 145 Repair Station;

    Volume 10, Chapter 2, Section 1, Safety Assurance System: Module 1 Configuration; and

    Volume 10, Chapter 5, Section 1, Safety Assurance System: Module 4 Data Collection.

2.    Audience. The primary audience for this notice includes Flight Standards division managers, Office Managers (OM), principal inspectors (PI), and certification project managers (CPM) who have oversight responsibility for applicants and operators certificated under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) for operations under 14 CFR parts 121, 135, and 145. The secondary audience includes all Flight Standards divisions, branches, and offices.

3.    Where You Can Find This Notice. You can find this notice on the MyFAA employee website at Inspectors can access this notice through the Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS) at Operators can find this notice on the FAA’s website at This notice is available to the public at

4.    Background. The Flight Standards Service has determined that the collection of certain information through the SAS external portal and DCTs from applicants and certificate holders is covered by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (refer to Title 44 of the United States Code (44 U.S.C.) chapter 35). The PRA is a law that requires Federal agencies to take responsibility and accountability for reducing the burden of Federal paperwork on the public (e.g., individuals, small businesses, educational and nonprofit institutions, Federal contractors, and state and local governments), regardless of whether the collection is mandatory, voluntary, or required to obtain or retain a benefit. The PRA covers almost all information collected, including oral and written communication and automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques.

5.    Policy Change. Flights Standards is in the process of working with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to obtain approval for the collection of information through the external portal and the DCTs. Until the OMB grants approval (or until the expiration date of this notice), this notice provides policy and guidance on the use of the external portal and DCTs.

a.    SAS External Portal. The SAS external portal is a secure, user-friendly, web-based interface for the applicant or certificate holder to exchange information with Flight Standards personnel. Until the OMB grants approval, Flight Standards has determined that the use of the external portal to collect the following information will be voluntary:

    Configuration data;

    Preapplication Statement of Intent (PASI);

    FAA Form 8310-3, Application for Repair Station Certificate and/or Rating;

    Scoped Element Design (ED) DCTs (Module 4);

    Changes to the scope of operations;

    Change requests to their certificate;

    Submitted correspondence;

    Manuals; and

    Minimum equipment list (MEL) revisions.

b.    SAS DCTs.

(1)    System or Subsystem Performance (SP) DCTs and Element Performance (EP) DCTs. SP DCTs and EP DCTs are used by inspectors to determine if an applicant’s or certificate holder’s operating systems are producing the intended results, to confirm the applicant’s or certificate holder’s risk assessment is occurring through their monitoring process, and that they are taking appropriate corrective action when necessary. These tools are intended for inspector use only and should not be given to the certificate holder to complete.
(2)    ED DCTs and National/Regional Custom DCTs (C DCT). ED DCTs and some National/Regional C DCTs (also known as “self-audited” DCTs) are used to ensure an applicant’s or certificate holder’s operating systems are designed to comply with the intent of regulations and system safety. Flight Standards uses many of these DCTs during the initial certification process to collect information from parts 121, 135, and 145 applicants. Until the OMB grants approval, Flight Standards has determined that we cannot mandate the use of the ED DCTs and National/Regional C DCTs by the applicant or certificate holder to collect information. If the applicant chooses not to use the “self-audited” DCTs, then the CPM or PI will need to conduct their own evaluation of the applicant’s programs and complete the FAA DCTs.

6.    Disposition. We will incorporate the information in this notice into Order 8900.1 before this notice expires. Direct questions concerning the information in this notice to the Safety Analysis and Promotion Division (AFS‑900) at


/s/ John S. Duncan

Executive Director, Flight Standards Service