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Aircraft Type Certification Process

Aircraft Type Certification Process: Type certification is a regulatory process that the FAA uses to ensure that aircraft manufacturers comply with Federal Airworthiness Regulations. The goal of certification for the manufacturer of a new or derivative transport-category airplane is the type certificate. To obtain a TC, the manufacturer must demonstrate to the FAA that the aircraft or product being submitted for approval complies with all applicable FARs. According to 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 21.21,

An applicant is entitled to a type certificate for an aircraft in the normal, utility, acrobatic, commuter, or transport-category, or for a manned free balloon, special class of aircraft, or an aircraft engine or propeller, if—

(a) The product qualifies under Sec. 21.27; or

(b) The applicant submits the type design, test reports, and computations necessary to show that the product to be certificated meets the applicable [airworthiness, aircraft noise, fuel venting, and exhaust emission] requirements of the Federal Aviation Regulations and any special conditions prescribed by the Administrator, and the Administrator finds—

(1) Upon examination of the type design, and after completing all tests and inspections, that the type design and the product meet the applicable [noise, fuel venting, and emissions] requirements of the Federal Aviation Regulations, and further finds that they meet the applicable airworthiness requirements of the Federal Aviation Regulations or that any airworthiness provisions not complied with are compensated for by factors that provide an equivalent level of safety; and

(2) For an aircraft, that no feature or characteristic makes it unsafe for the category in which certification is requested

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