[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 65 (Wednesday, April 7, 2021)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 17993-17995]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-07164]


========================================================================
Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

========================================================================


Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 65 / Wednesday, April 7, 2021 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 17993]]



DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2021-0255; Project Identifier AD-2020-01282-T]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) 
for certain The Boeing Company Model 787-8, 787-9, and 787-10 
airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by reports that very high 
frequency (VHF) radio frequencies transfer between the active and 
standby windows of the tuning control panel (TCP) without flightcrew 
input. This proposed AD would require updating the TCP operational 
software (OPS) and performing a software configuration check. The FAA 
is proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 24, 
2021.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 
11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
     Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket 
Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.
     Hand Delivery: Deliver to Mail address above between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Boeing 
Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services (C&DS), 
2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740-5600; 
telephone 562-797-1717; internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may 
view this referenced service information at the FAA, Airworthiness 
Products Section, Operational Safety Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des 
Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the 
FAA, call 206-231-3195. It is also available on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-
0255.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-
0255; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains 
this NPRM, any comments received, and other information. The street 
address for Docket Operations is listed above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Frank Carreras, Aerospace Engineer, 
Systems and Equipment Section, FAA, Seattle ACO Branch, 2200 South 
216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; phone and fax: 206-231-3539; email: 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Comments Invited

    The FAA invites you to send any written relevant data, views, or 
arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed 
under ADDRESSES. Include ``Docket No. FAA-2021-0255; Project Identifier 
AD-2020-01282-T'' at the beginning of your comments. The most helpful 
comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the 
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA 
will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend 
the proposal because of those comments.
    Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as described in 
the following paragraph, and other information as described in 14 CFR 
11.35, the FAA will post all comments received, without change, to 
https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you 
provide. The agency will also post a report summarizing each 
substantive verbal contact received about this proposed AD.

Confidential Business Information

    CBI is commercial or financial information that is both customarily 
and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the Freedom of 
Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from public 
disclosure. If your comments responsive to this NPRM contain commercial 
or financial information that is customarily treated as private, that 
you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or responsive to 
this NPRM, it is important that you clearly designate the submitted 
comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission containing 
CBI as ``PROPIN.'' The FAA will treat such marked submissions as 
confidential under the FOIA, and they will not be placed in the public 
docket of this NPRM. Submissions containing CBI should be sent to Frank 
Carreras, Aerospace Engineer, Systems and Equipment Section, FAA, 
Seattle ACO Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; phone 
and fax: 206-231-3539; email: [email protected]. Any commentary 
that the FAA receives which is not specifically designated as CBI will 
be placed in the public docket for this rulemaking.

Background

    The FAA has received reports indicating that VHF radio frequencies 
transfer between the active and standby windows of the TCP without 
flightcrew input. The flightcrew may not be aware of uncommanded 
frequency changes and could fail to receive air traffic control 
communications. Uncommanded frequency changes, if not addressed, could 
result in missed communications, such as amended clearances or critical 
instructions for changes to flight path, and consequent loss of safe 
separation between aircraft, collision, or runway incursion.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    The FAA reviewed Boeing Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-
SB230041-00 RB, Issue 002, dated September 14, 2020. The service 
information describes procedures for updating the TCP OPS on TCP C, TCP 
L, and TCP R, and for a performing a

[[Page 17994]]

software configuration check. This service information is reasonably 
available because the interested parties have access to it through 
their normal course of business or by the means identified in the 
ADDRESSES section.

FAA's Determination

    The FAA is proposing this AD because the agency evaluated all the 
relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described 
previously is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same 
type design.

Proposed AD Requirements

    This proposed AD would require accomplishment of the actions 
identified in the service information described previously, except for 
any differences identified as exceptions in the regulatory text of this 
proposed AD.
    For information on the procedures and compliance times, see this 
service information at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and 
locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0255.

Explanation of Requirements Bulletin

    The FAA worked in conjunction with industry, under the 
Airworthiness Directive Implementation Aviation Rulemaking Committee 
(AD ARC), to enhance the AD system. One enhancement is a process for 
annotating which steps in the service information are ``required for 
compliance'' (RC) with an AD. Boeing has implemented this RC concept 
into Boeing service bulletins.
    In an effort to further improve the quality of ADs and AD-related 
Boeing service information, a joint process improvement initiative was 
worked between the FAA and Boeing. The initiative resulted in the 
development of a new process in which the service information more 
clearly identifies the actions needed to address the unsafe condition 
in the ``Accomplishment Instructions.'' The new process results in a 
Boeing Requirements Bulletin, which contains only the actions needed to 
address the unsafe condition (i.e., only the RC actions).

Costs of Compliance

    The FAA estimates that this proposed AD affects 89 airplanes of 
U.S. registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with 
this proposed AD:

                                      Estimated Costs for Required Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                     Cost per      Cost on U.S.
                Action                         Labor cost           Parts cost        product        operators
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Update software and perform check.....  0.75 work-hour x $85 per              $0          $63.75       $5,673.75
                                         hour = $63.75.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to 
issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the 
authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, 
describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.
    The FAA is issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in 
Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General requirements. 
Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight 
of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for 
practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary 
for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that 
authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to 
exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

Regulatory Findings

    The FAA determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism 
implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not 
have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship 
between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution 
of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.
    For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed 
regulation:
    (1) Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive 
Order 12866,
    (2) Would not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and
    (3) Would not have a significant economic impact, positive or 
negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by 
reference, Safety.

The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the 
Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

0
1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.


Sec.  39.13  [Amended]

0
2. The FAA amends Sec.  39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness 
directive:

The Boeing Company: Docket No. FAA-2021-0255; Project Identifier AD-
2020-01282-T.

(a) Comments Due Date

    The FAA must receive comments on this airworthiness directive 
(AD) action by May 24, 2021.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to The Boeing Company Model 787-8, 787-9, and 
787-10 airplanes, certificated in any category, as identified in 
Boeing Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-SB230041-00 RB, Issue 
002, dated September 14, 2020.

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 23, 
Communications.

(e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by reports that very high frequency (VHF) 
radio frequencies transfer between the active and standby windows of 
the tuning control panel (TCP) without flightcrew input. The FAA is 
issuing this AD to address uncommanded frequency changes, which 
could result in missed air traffic control communications such as 
amended clearances and critical instructions for changes to flight 
path, and consequent loss of safe separation between aircraft, 
collision, or runway incursion.

(f) Compliance

    Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, 
unless already done.

(g) Required Actions

    Except as specified by paragraph (h) of this AD: At the 
applicable times specified in the ``Compliance'' paragraph of Boeing 
Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-SB230041-00 RB, Issue 002, 
dated September 14, 2020, do all applicable actions identified in, 
and in accordance with, the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing 
Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-

[[Page 17995]]

SB230041-00 RB, Issue 002, dated September 14, 2020.
    Note 1 to paragraph (g): Guidance for accomplishing the actions 
required by this AD can be found in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 
B787-81205-SB230041-00, Issue 002, dated September 14, 2020, which 
is referred to in Boeing Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-
SB230041-00 RB, Issue 002, dated September 14, 2020.

(h) Exception to Service Information Specifications

    Where Boeing Alert Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-SB230041-00 
RB, Issue 002, dated September 14, 2020, uses the phrase ``the Issue 
001 date of Requirements Bulletin B787-81205-SB230041-00 RB,'' this 
AD requires using ``the effective date of this AD.''

(i) Credit for Previous Actions

    This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in 
paragraph (g) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the 
effective date of this AD using Boeing Alert Requirements Bulletin 
B787-81205-SB230041-00 RB, Issue 001, dated April 24, 2020.

(j) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Seattle ACO Branch, FAA, has the authority to 
approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found 
in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request 
to your principal inspector or responsible Flight Standards Office, 
as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of 
the certification office, send it to the attention of the person 
identified in paragraph (k)(1) of this AD. Information may be 
emailed to: [email protected].
    (2) Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate 
principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager 
of the responsible Flight Standards Office.
    (3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be 
used for any repair, modification, or alteration required by this AD 
if it is approved by The Boeing Company Organization Designation 
Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Seattle 
ACO Branch, FAA, to make those findings. To be approved, the repair 
method, modification deviation, or alteration deviation must meet 
the certification basis of the airplane, and the approval must 
specifically refer to this AD.

(k) Related Information

    (1) For more information about this AD, contact Frank Carreras, 
Aerospace Engineer, Systems and Equipment Section, FAA, Seattle ACO 
Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; phone and fax: 
206-231-3539; email: [email protected].
    (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services 
(C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740-
5600; telephone 562-797-1717; internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service 
information at the FAA, Airworthiness Products Section, Operational 
Safety Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information 
on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206-231-3195.

    Issued on March 25, 2021.
Gaetano A. Sciortino,
Deputy Director for Strategic Initiatives, Compliance & Airworthiness 
Division, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-07164 Filed 4-6-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P