FAA AC 120-76B – Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) | Paperless Cockpit

FAA AC 120-76B – Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB)

The FAA recently released for comment a draft Advisory Circular 120-76B, "Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB)". This is the third revision of the AC 120-76 series and provides guidance for operational approval and installation of Electronic Flight Bags. While previous versions of this AC were applicable primarily to certificated operators (i.e. Part 91, Part 135), the proposed draft of AC 120-76B includes additional guidance and policy for Part 91 F (large and turbine powered aircraft) Operators. The AC also clarifies EMI and Rapid Decompression testing requirements for all operators and equipment and provides additional guidance on airworthiness certification of EFB mounting devices and power provisions, use of Lithium Ion batteries in Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs), and requirements for paperless operations. The comment period ends July 13, 2011, and PaperlessCockpit.com enourages readers to post their specific comments in this Forum.

The original document can be downloaded here.

The FAA draft announcement can be found here.


U.S. Department of Transportation

Federal Aviation Administration

Advisory Circular

Subject: Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB)

Date: DRAFT

Initiated by: AFS-400

AC No: 120-76B

Change:

1. PURPOSE. This joint Flight Standards Service (AFS) and Aircraft Certification Service (AIR) advisory circular (AC) sets forth an acceptable means, but not the only means, for all operators conducting flight operations under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 91, 121, 125, 129, or 135 to obtain authorization for the operational use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB). This guidance material applies to operators of large and turbine-powered multiengine and fractional ownership aircraft operating under part 91 subpart F and part 91 subpart K (part 91K), where the operating regulations require specific functionality and/or equipage. Other part 91 operations do not require any specific authorization for EFB operations provided the EFB does not replace any system or equipment required by the regulations, but these operators must still comply with the portable electronic device (PED) regulation (part 91, § 91.21). See the current edition of (AC) 91-78, Use of Class 1 or Class 2 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB).

2. CANCELLATION. This AC cancels AC 120-76A, Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Approval of Electronic Flight Bag Computing Devices, dated March 17, 2003.

3. RELATED 14 CFRs. Title 14 CFR parts 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 43, 91, 121, 125, and 135.

4. DEFINITIONS. The following definitions are specific to this AC and may differ with those definitions contained in other published references.

a. Administrative Control Process. Operator administered procedure to record and log the removal or addition of a Class 2 EFB to the aircraft.

b. Aircraft Administrative Communications (AAC). AAC data link receives/transmits information that includes, but is not limited to, the support of applications identified in Appendices 1 and 2. AAC should directly relate to the business of an aircraft operator in providing travel and transportation services to the flying public or to the travel, transportation, or scheduling activities of the aircraft operator itself. AAC is nonsafety-related services, which include cabin services, seat assignments, passenger travel arrangements, and baggage tracing. Transmission of AAC must provide absolute priority for operational control and other safety communications by means of an automatic priority control system. AAC used by portable EFBs may only support functions that have a failure effect classification of “minor” or “no effect.”

 

c. Approved Software. Software approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) using RTCA/DO-178B, Software Considerations in Airborne Systems and Equipment Certification, compliance or other acceptable means.

d. Class 1 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Hardware. Portable commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based computers, considered to be PEDs with no FAA design, production, or installation approval for the device and its internal components. Class 1 EFBs can be authorized for use during aircraft operation and are usually readily handled or carried on/off the aircraft. Class 1 EFBs are not attached or mounted to the aircraft; they must be secured or stowed during critical phases of flight. Class 1 EFBs that have Type B applications for aeronautical charts, approach charts, or electronic checklist must be secured and viewable during critical phases of flight and must not interfere with flight control movement.

e. Class 2 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Hardware. Typically portable COTS-based computers used for aircraft operations that are considered PEDs, having no FAA design, production, installation approval, or approved data requirements for the device. Class 2 EFBs are attached or secured to a permanently installed aircraft mount during use. Class 2 EFBs must be capable of being easily removed from or secured to their mounts by flightcrew personnel. Class 2 EFBs may connect to aircraft power, data ports, or installed antennas, provided those connections are installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations.

f. Class 3 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Hardware. EFBs installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations.

g. Critical Phases of Flight. Includes all ground operations involving taxi, takeoff, and landing, and all other flight operations conducted below 10,000 feet, except cruise flight.

h. Electronic Flight Bag (EFB). An electronic display system intended primarily for flight deck use that includes the hardware and software needed to support an intended function. EFB devices can display a variety of aviation data or perform basic calculations (e.g., performance data, fuel calculations, etc.). In the past, some of these functions were traditionally accomplished using paper references or were based on data provided to the flightcrew by an airline’s “flight dispatch” function. The scope of the EFB functionality may also include various other hosted databases and applications. Physical EFB displays may use various technologies, formats, and forms of communication. An EFB must be able to host Type A and/or Type B software applications.

i. Hosted Application. Software running on an EFB that is not installed or considered part of aircraft type design.

j. Interactive Information. Information presented on the EFB that, via software applications, can be selected and rendered in a number of dynamic ways. This includes variables in the information presented based on data-oriented software algorithms, concepts of decluttering, and selectable composition as opposed to pre-composed information.

k. Mounting Device. These may include arm-mounted, kneeboard, cradle, clip, docking stations, etc. These mounts may require quick disconnect for egress.

l. Portable Electronic Device (PED). Section 91.21, part 121, § 121.306, part 125,

§ 125.204, and part 135, § 135.144 refer to PEDs and place restrictions on the in-flight use of PEDs. There are two types of PEDs and two methods of compliance with these regulations.

(1) The non-EFB PED method of compliance with PED regulations is in the current edition of AC 91.21-1, Use of Portable Electronic Devices Aboard Aircraft. Use of these PEDs is prohibited in instrument flight rules (IFR) flight operations, except in cruise flight.

(2) The EFB PED method of compliance with PED regulations is in FAA Order 8900.1, Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS), and this AC. Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs with authorized EFB functions may be used in all phases of flight in accordance with the requirements of Order 8900.1 and/or this AC.

m. Precomposed Information. Information previously composed into a static composed state (non-interactive). The composed displays have consistent, defined, and verifiable content, and formats that are fixed in composition.

n. Type A Software Applications. Type A applications are those applications intended for use on the ground or during noncritical phases of flight. Type A applications do not include aeronautical information required for flight operations. Examples of Type A software applications are listed in Appendix 1.

o. Type B Software Applications. Type B applications provide aeronautical information required to be accessible for each flight at the pilot station. Examples of Type B software applications are listed in Appendix 2.

p. Type C Software Applications. Software approved by the FAA using RTCA/DO-178B compliance or other acceptable means.

5. RELATED READING MATERIALS. See Appendix 3, References and Related Reading Materials, for a list of references.

6. BACKGROUND.

a. PEDs. Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs are both considered PEDs. The use of any PED in aircraft is subject to compliance with PED regulations (§§ 91.21, 121.306, 125.204, and 135.144). The PED regulations’ applicability addresses certificated operators and IFR aircraft. Except for part 91 subpart F and part 91K, aircraft operated in visual flight rules (VFR) under part 91 are not subject to PED regulations. Except for part 91 subpart F and part 91K, aircraft operated in VFR under part 91 require no EFB authorization or compliance with this AC, provided the EFB does not replace any equipment or operating information required by the regulations. For all aircraft, other than part 91, operating under VFR, PED regulatory compliance is required. PED regulatory methods for compliance are addressed in this AC and AC 91.21-1. There are two separate methods of compliance respective to Non-EFB PEDs and EFB PEDs. Non-EFB PED compliance is in accordance with AC 91.21-1 and prohibits the use of PEDs in flight operations except when safely in cruise and/or above 10,000 feet. All PEDs are subject to these restrictions unless they are an authorized EFB. To be an authorized EFB the PED must provide authorized EFB functions listed in Appendices 1 and 2 and meet the additional evaluation criteria in paragraphs 10 and 11. An authorized EFB PED may be used in all phases of flight operations.

b. EFBs. EFBs can electronically store and retrieve documents required for flight operations, such as the General Operations Manual (GOM), minimum equipment lists (MEL), operations specifications (OpSpecs), and control documents. Some EFBs are used during all phases of flight operations.

7. APPLICABILITY. One of the major motivators for using an EFB is to reduce or eliminate the need for paper and other reference materials in the cockpit. This AC describes the EFB functions, features, and selected hosted applications, and applies to the authorization for use of both portable and installed EFBs.

8. SCOPE. The primary intent of the guidance material described in this AC is to assist operators and flightcrews in transitioning from the paper products in a traditional flight bag to an electronic format. Use this AC in combination with other material contained in current Communication, Navigation, and Surveillance (CNS) ACs or other FAA-approved guidance material. The intent of this AC is to provide specific guidance material for certain EFB applications and establishes guidance for operational use of EFBs by flight deck crewmembers and other crewmembers in the cabin. The intention of this AC is not to supersede existing operational guidance material. Own-ship position is not authorized for display or used for any application, for navigation or otherwise, on a Class 1 or Class 2 EFB in flight. Do not use this AC by itself to add own-ship position on moving maps on Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs. For guidance on the display of own-ship position, see Technical Standard Order (TSO)-C165, Electronic Map Display Equipment for Graphical Depiction of Aircraft Position (current edition). For an acceptable means to use an airport moving map display (AMMD) during ground operations on a Class 2 or installed EFB, see the current edition of AC 20-159, Obtaining Design and Production Approval of Airport Moving Map Display Applications Intended for Electronic Flight Bag Systems. The AMMD, which provides depiction of an own-ship symbol for ground operations, is not identified as a Type A or Type B application. It may be approved as a Type C application if the manufacturer obtains a design and production approval per AC 20-159. Evidence of a Technical Standard Order Authorization (TSOA) design approval for the AMMD application approved software is an adequate indication to the FAA for use with the hosted Type A and Type B applications in an EFB system that the manufacturer has demonstrated to be compatible. As the FAA develops new guidance, use it in combination with this AC to add additional applications.

9. EFB CLASSIFICATIONS FOR AIRWORTHINESS CERTIFICATION AND AUTHORIZATION FOR USE. All applications and information contained in the EFB intended for operational use must be current and up-to-date. See Appendices 1 and 2 for a list of EFB application examples. In addition to the applications listed in Appendices 1 and 2, the Aircraft Evaluation Group (AEG) may have a record of Flight Standardization Board (FSB) reports or Operational Suitability Reports (OSR) on file that contains hardware and software applications/functions that have been evaluated. The following guidance is for determining EFB classification as well as roles and responsibilities.

a. Class 1 EFB Hardware. These EFBs are portable, COTS devices that are not mounted or attached to the aircraft. Class 1 EFBs that have Type B applications for aeronautical charts, approach charts, or electronic checklists must be secured and viewable during critical phases of flight and must not interfere with flight control movement. An EFB attached to the pilot’s leg (e.g., kneeboard type) may still be considered a Class 1 EFB because it is not attached to the aircraft. The operator should document EFB non-interference to show operational suitability and compliance with the guidance in AC 91.21-1 and this AC.

b. Class 2 EFB Hardware. These EFBs are typically attached to the aircraft by a mounting device and may be connected to a data source, a hard-wired power source, and an installed antenna, provided those connections are installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations. In order to be considered portable, tools must not be required to remove an EFB from the flight deck and a pilot crewmember must be able to perform the task. Portable EFBs must be located on the flight deck and controlled by the flightcrew during all flight operations. Although attached to the aircraft via a mounting device, Class 2 EFB hardware must be accessible to the flightcrew and must be removable without the use of tools. The components of the Class 2 EFB include all the hardware and software needed to support EFB intended functions. A Class 2 EFB may consist of modular components (e.g., computer processing unit, display, controls). Any EFB hardware not accessible on the flight deck by the flightcrew and/or not portable must be installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations.

NOTE: Normally, portable EFBs are limited to hosting Type A and Type B software applications or TSO functions limited to a minor failure effect classification. However, Type C software associated with the provision of own-ship position on AMMDs may be hosted on Class 1 or Class 2 portable EFBs. See AC 20-159 for details.

(1) The operator should document EFB non-interference to show operational suitability and compliance with the guidance in AC 91.21-1 and this AC.

(2) FAA airworthiness approval is limited to the aircraft connectivity provisions (i.e., mounting device (e.g., arm-mounted, cradle, yoke-clip), data connectivity, installed antennas, and power connection) installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations.

EFB mounting requires installation in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations for integrity of mounting, location, non-impeded egress, accessibility to instruments and controls, physical interference, etc.

EFB data connections require installation in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations to ensure non-interference and isolation from aircraft systems during transmission and reception. The EFB data connection may receive information from any aircraft system as well as receive or transmit information for AAC purposes. Connectivity may be wired or wireless.

Class 2 EFB hardware, internal components, and software do not require FAA airworthiness approval.

(3) Class 2 EFBs may require compliance with RTCA/DO-160, Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment, radio frequency (RF) emission, decompression, and altitude testing, if removing required paper products.

(4) Class 2 EFB mounting devices, installed antennas, power connection, and data connectivity provisions installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations may require Aircraft Flight Manual (AFM) or Aircraft Flight Manual Supplement (AFMS) revisions.

(5) Removal of Class 2 EFB from the aircraft may be done through an administrative control process (e.g., logbook entry).

(6) Operators must determine non-interference and operational suitability with existing aircraft systems for all flight phases and ensure that the system performs the intended function.

(7) Class 2 EFBs may require aircraft certification to conduct a human factors evaluation of the EFB mount and cockpit location.

(8) Operators must determine the usage of hardware architectural features, persons, procedures, and/or equipment to eliminate, reduce, or control risks associated with an identified failure in an EFB.

c. Class 3 EFB Hardware. EFBs installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations.

d. Type A EFB Software Application. Appendix 1 lists examples of EFB hosted software applications. Type A software applications include precomposed, fixed presentations of data currently presented in paper format. Type A applications can be used on the ground or during noncritical phases of flight. Malfunction of a Type A application is limited to a hazard level defined as no greater than a minor failure condition classification for all flight phases and have no adverse effect on the safety of a flight operation. The operator must possess evidence demonstrating that the operational and certification requirements are met when using the applications listed in Appendix 1.

(1) Type A application software does not require compliance with RTCA/DO-178B.

(2) The operator can use the application after successful completion of the user/operator evaluation (including flightcrew training, checking, and currency requirements).

(3) Type A application software for Weight and Balance (W&B) are applications that present existing information found in the applicable AFM or pilot’s operating handbook (POH) or W&B manual. These Type A applications are exact electronic replications of the printed document they replace (e.g., PDF files).

(4) Type A application software for aircraft performance are applications that present existing information found in the applicable AFM or POH. These Type A applications are electronic replications of the printed document they replace (e.g., PDF files).

(5) Operators must determine the usage of hardware and/or software architectural features, people, procedures, and/or equipment to eliminate, reduce, or control risks associated with an identified failure in a system.

(6) The operator should provide evidence demonstrating that the EFB operating system and hosted application software meet the criteria for the appropriate intended function and do not provide false or hazardously misleading information. This evidence includes demonstration that software revisions will not corrupt the data integrity of the original software performance.

e. Type B EFB Software Applications. Appendix 2 lists examples of EFB hosted software applications. Type B applications include dynamic, interactive applications that can manipulate data and presentation. Malfunction of a Type B application is limited to a hazard level defined as no greater than a minor failure condition classification for all flight phases and have no adverse effect on the completion of a flight operation. The operator must provide evidence demonstrating that the operational and certification requirements are met when using the applications listed in Appendix 2.

(1) Type B application software does not require compliance with RTCA/DO-178B.

(2) The operator can use the application after successful completion of the user/operator evaluation (including flightcrew training, checking, and currency requirements).

(3) Type B applications are used to display precomposed or interactive information such as navigation or approach charts. Required flight information is presented for each applicable phase of flight. A map-centering or page-turning function can be authorized if the operator properly evaluates it. Electronic navigation charts must provide a level of information integrity equivalent to paper charts.

NOTE: Class 1 or Class 2 EFBs must not display own-ship position while in flight. For use of own-ship position on the ground see AC 20-159.

(4) Operators must determine the usage of hardware and/or software architectural features, persons, procedures, and or equipment to eliminate, reduce, or control risks associated with an identified failure in a system.

(5) The operator should provide evidence demonstrating that the EFB operating system and hosted application software meet the criteria for the appropriate intended function and do not provide false or hazardously misleading information. This evidence includes a demonstration that software revisions will not corrupt the data integrity or intended function of the original installed software configuration.

(6) Data link EFB functions may display approved or unapproved sources of weather. Weather and aeronautical information such as data-linked meteorology information (MET) and Aeronautical Information Service (AIS) products are for advisory use only. These products enhance situational awareness (SA), but lack sufficient resolution, service delivery reliability, and updating necessary for tactical maneuvering/use. Do not use data-linked MET and AIS products as a sole source for making tactical in-flight decisions regarding flight safety when avoiding adverse weather, airspace, or obstacle hazards, such as negotiating a path through a weather hazard area. Current data-linked MET and AIS products support strategic decisionmaking such as route selection to avoid a weather hazard area in its entirety. (For more information on this subject see the current editions of FAA AC 00-45, Aviation Weather Services, and FAA AC 00-63, Use of Cockpit Displays of Digital Weather and Operational Information.

(7) Data link graphical weather from sources such as XM and next generation weather radar (NexRad) may be from unapproved sources of advisory weather information and can only be used for strategic planning purposes. Do not use unapproved sources of data link graphical weather information for tactical decisions during critical phases of flight because data quality is uncontrolled for aviation use. In some instances, data link textual weather may be from an approved weather source, depending on the data link system and the weather provider. Do not use data link graphical weather data as a substitute for airborne weather radar or thunderstorm detection equipment.

(8) Type B applications for W&B are software applications that have their basis on existing information found in the FAA-approved flight manual, POH, or W&B manual for an aircraft. Type B W&B applications use data management software to provide data reference and mathematical calculation to simplify calculation of aircraft W&B. Type B W&B applications adhere to existing approved data and must be validated for accuracy in the entire aircraft operating envelope. Type B W&B applications may use algorithms to calculate W&B results or may use basic mathematics combined with data spreadsheets to determine W&B results. Algorithms may have the ability to interpolate data but must not extrapolate and therefore must be tested and proven accurate by the manufacturer or operator to represent the AFM (or Rotorcraft Flight Manual (RFM)) approved data. Type B W&B applications are produced for a specific aircraft and based on AFM approved data.

(9) Type B applications for performance are software applications based on existing information found in the FAA-approved flight manual, POH, or performance manual for an aircraft. Type B performance applications use data management software to provide data reference and mathematical calculations to simplify determination of applicable aircraft performance data. Type B performance applications must adhere to existing AFM approved data and validated for accurate determination of aircraft performance for the entire operating envelope. Type B aircraft performance applications may use algorithms to calculate results or may use data spreadsheets to determine results. Algorithms may have the ability to interpolate but must not extrapolate beyond the data contained in the current approved AFM. These algorithms have to be tested and verified to meet existing FAA-approved AFM performance data. Type B performance applications must not extrapolate or project results not represented by AFM approved data points envelope of conditions including, but not limited to, pressure altitude, temperature, and weight. Type B aircraft performance applications are produced for a specific aircraft type based on approved AFM data.

(10) Type B applications require a validation period, typically 6 months, to ensure the reliability of the EFB functions prior to the removal of the applicable paper documents. Operational procedures must be established to verify the accuracy of inputs and outputs of Type B application software. Validation is a necessary part of risk mitigation to ensure the effective function and reliability of EFB hardware, software, and procedures. A validation report documenting results of the validation period must be completed and available prior to removal of the applicable paper documents.

(11) Type B W&B and/or performance software applications require validation testing prior to EFB operational use. Applications using data spreadsheets where each data point is entered into software data then referenced for output must be verified for accurate data selection. Applications based on algorithms that calculate output must be verified to accurately represent the AFM data they replace. Creation of a new algorithmic method to replace AFM data is not allowed in Type B applications. Type B algorithms must adhere to the same data methodology as the AFM approved data. The Type B application must always be demonstrated traceable to the paper AFM approved data. These Type B applications must not allow entry input or output of data outside the AFM data envelope(s). Sufficient data points, based on application architecture, must be tested and documented to show the applications accurately adhere to and are limited to the AFM approved data envelope segments and for performance must represent net climb gradient with considerations including but not limited to level-off, acceleration, transitions, and engine takeoff power time limits. Type B applications for performance must accurately address engine inoperative gradients and obstacle clearance plane and/or weight limits. Transition from airport area performance to en route climb performance and obstacle clearance must be addressed. Type B applications are suitable only in so far as they accurately reproduce the paper AFM data. Type B W&B and/or performance applications must meet approval criteria listed in FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 4, Chapter 3, Section 3, Approval of Performance Data Sections of CFMs.

(12) Develop operational procedures in accordance with § 121.133 for aircraft operated under this part. These procedures should define the roles that the flightcrew and dispatch/flight following have in creating and reviewing performance calculations. OpSpecs must be issued as appropriate.

f. Type C EFB Applications. Type C applications are FAA-approved software using RTCA/DO-178B compliance, or other acceptable means. Software approval guidelines are found in RTCA/DO-178B and the current edition of FAA Order 8110.49, Software Approval Guidelines.

(1) Type C applications for W&B and/or Performance are those applications approved by AIR for a specific aircraft and are approved as part of the AFM or as an AFMS.

(2) FAA evaluated software applications will have an FAA-approved flight manual supplement.

(3) Contact the responsible AEG for assistance regarding applications offered by aircraft manufacturers or Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) holders for specific aircraft. The operator may utilize Type C W&B and/or performance applications on Class 1 or Class 2 EFBs provided the software system requirements are met. Type C applications for W&B and/or performance are those applications approved by AIR for a specific aircraft. These Type C W&B and/or Performance software applications are approved as part of the AFM or as an AFM Supplement. AIR evaluated software applications will have an FAA-approved flight manual supplement. Contact the responsible AEG for assistance regarding applications offered by aircraft manufacturers or STC holders for specific aircraft. The operator may utilize Type C W&B and/or performance applications on Class 1 or Class 2 EFBs provided the software system requirements are met.

(4) TSOA. A TSOA is a dual FAA certification design and production approval with a streamlined approval process. Operators may apply for a TSOA for certain EFB Type C applications. Published in the current edition of AC 20-110, Index of Aviation Technical Standard Orders, is an index of TSO standards. Part 21 subpart O defines the regulatory basis for a TSOA. EFB Type C applications that receive a TSOA may be authorized for use on Class 1 and Class 2 EFB provided they meet the following conditions:

(a) Hosted applications must be classified as a minor failure effect or no safety effect. No major safety effect or higher classifications are acceptable. In-flight depiction of own-ship position is classified as a major safety effect and is not authorized on a Class 1 or Class 2 EFB.

(b) Type A and/or Type B EFB applications may reside in a TSOA system provided they do not interfere with the EFB Type C application(s).

10. EFB HARDWARE CONSIDERATIONS.

a. Paper Date Removal. At least two portable EFBs are required to remove paper products that contain aeronautical charts, checklists, or other data required by the operating rules. The design of the system architecture requires that no single failure, or common mode error, may cause the loss of required aeronautical information.

b. Electrical Backup Power Source. System design must consider the source of electrical power, the independence of the power sources for multiple EFBs, and the potential need for independent battery source. EFBs that do not have battery backup, and that are used to remove paper products required by the operating rules, are required to have at least one EFB connected to an aircraft power bus.

NOTE: Class 1 and Class 2 EFB electrical power source provisions that are certified on part 25 airplanes are required to follow the policy outlined in the Transport Airplane Directorate policy statement, ANM-01-111-165, Power

Supply Systems for Portable Electronic Devices, unless an alternative method is proposed by the operator and approved by AIR.

c. Battery Backup. Some applications, especially when used as a source of required information, may require that the EFB use an alternate power supply to achieve an acceptable level of safety. The operator is also responsible to ensure the replacing of batteries is completed as required, but no less often than the EFB manufacturer’s recommended interval.

d. Battery Replacement. If the EFB manufacturer has not specified a battery replacement interval, then the original battery (or cell) manufacturer’s specified replacement interval should be adhered to.

e. Lithium Batteries. Rechargeable lithium-type batteries are becoming more common as a standby or backup power source used in EFBs. The users of rechargeable lithium-type batteries in other industries, ranging from wireless telephone manufacturers to the electric vehicle industry, have noted safety concerns. These concerns are primarily the result of overcharging, over-discharging, and the flammability of cell components. Lithium-ion or lithium-polymer (lithium-ion polymer) batteries are two types of rechargeable lithium batteries commonly used to power EFBs. These types of batteries are capable of ignition and subsequent explosion due to the flammability of cell components. They are also vulnerable to overcharging and over-discharging, which can, through internal failure, result in overheating. Overheating may result in thermal runaway, which can cause the release of either molten burning lithium or a flammable electrolyte. Once one cell in a battery pack goes into thermal runaway, it produces enough heat to cause adjacent cells to also go into thermal runaway. The resulting fire can flare repeatedly as each cell ruptures and releases its contents. The word “battery” used in this AC refers to the battery pack, its cells, and its circuitry. The rechargeable lithium-type battery design should be compliant with the provisions of Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) 1625, IEEE Standard for Rechargeable Batteries for Portable Computing. This standard drives design considerations for system integration, cell, pack, host device, and total system reliability. It also covers how to maintain critical operational parameters with respect to time, environment, extremes in temperature, and the management of component failure. There are other regulations that may apply to the use of lithium batteries onboard aircraft, including the Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations for air travel found in Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR) part 175, § 175.10. DOT regulations do not allow more than 25 grams of equivalent lithium content (ELC) or 300 watt hours (WH) per battery pack in air travel. For more information see http://safetravel.dot.gov. DOT regulations apply to the shipment of lithium ion batteries, not to batteries installed in PEDs. However, if spare batteries are carried, operators should refer to current DOT regulations.

f. Lithium Battery Cautions. Due to their proximity to the flightcrew and potential hazard to safe operation of the aircraft, the use of rechargeable lithium-type batteries in EFBs located in the aircraft cockpit call for the following standards:

(1) Safety and Testing Standards. Operators should test EFB batteries and recharging systems to ensure safety and reliability. Operators must use one of the following safety and testing standards as a minimum for determining whether rechargeable lithium-type batteries used to power EFBs are acceptable for use and for recharging:

(a) Underwriters Laboratories (UL). UL 1642, Lithium Batteries; UL 2054, Household and Commercial Batteries; and UL 60950-1, Information Technology Equipment - Safety;

(b) International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). International Standard IEC 62133, Secondary cells and batteries containing alkaline or other non-acid electrolytes – Safety requirements for portable sealed secondary cells, and for batteries made from them, for use in portable applications;

(c) United Nations (UN) Transportation Regulations. UN ST/SG/AC.10/11/Rev.5—2009, Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, Manual of Tests and Criteria, Fifth revised edition; or

(d) RTCA/DO-311, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for Rechargeable Lithium Battery Systems. An appropriate airworthiness testing standard such as RTCA/DO-311 can be used to address concerns regarding overcharging, over-discharging, and the flammability of cell components. RTCA/DO-311 is intended to test permanently installed equipment; however, these tests are applicable and sufficient to test EFB rechargeable lithium-type batteries. If RTCA/DO-311 is used, then RTCA/DO-311 Table 4-1 and appendix C should be used for guidance on applicable testing.

(2) Showing Compliance. The operator provides the principal inspector (PI) with records of compliance to these battery standards during the authorization to use the EFB. These records may be available from the battery’s Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM).

g. Rechargeable Lithium-Type Battery Maintenance, Storage, and Functional Check. Operators should have documented maintenance procedures for their rechargeable lithium-type batteries. These procedures should meet or exceed the OEMs recommendations. These procedures should address battery life, proper storage and handling, and safety. There should be methods to ensure that the rechargeable lithium-type batteries are sufficiently charged at proper intervals and have periodic functional checks to ensure that they do not experience degraded charge retention capability or other damage due to prolonged storage. These procedures should include precautions to prevent mishandling of the battery, which could cause a short circuit or other unintentional exposure or damage that could result in personal injury or property damage. All replacements for rechargeable lithium batteries must be sourced from the OEM and repairs must not be made.

h. Use of Aircraft Electrical Power Sources. Aircraft electrical power outlets are part of the type design of the aircraft and require airworthiness certification. Appropriate labels should identify the electrical characteristics (e.g., 28VDC, 115VAC, 60 or 400 Hz, etc.) of electrical outlets. Rechargeable lithium-type batteries pose a much higher safety hazard when recharging than other battery chemistries. The aircraft electrical power provisions for recharging lithium-type batteries in the aircraft cockpit should address battery sensitivity to voltage and current parameters. Do not connect to the electrical outlet if the connection label does not exactly match the power requirements, both voltage and amperage, of the lithium batteries’ charging system. Conduct an electrical load analysis to replicate a typical EFB to ensure that powering or charging the EFB will not adversely affect other aircraft systems and that power requirements remain within power load budgets. There is a requirement for a certified means (other than a circuit breaker) installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations for the flightcrew to de-power the EFB power source or system charger. Additional actions and application of airworthiness regulations are not applicable to the internal elements of Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs unless specified in this AC.

i. Environmental Hazards Identification and Qualification Testing. Certain environmental hazards must be evaluated for Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs to ensure their safe use in anticipated operating environments. Evaluate Class 1 and Class 2 EFB system RF emissions data needs in accordance with AC 91.21-1 and this AC. Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs should demonstrate that they meet appropriate industry-adopted environmental qualification standards for radiated emissions for equipment operating in an airborne environment. It is necessary to demonstrate that any Class 1 or Class 2 EFB used in aircraft flight operations will have no adverse impact on other aircraft systems (non-interference). The manufacturer, installer, or operator may accomplish the testing and validation to ensure proper operation and non-interference with other installed systems. Test for possible interference while moving a portable EFB about in the cockpit. Additionally, altitude and rapid decompression testing may need to be accomplished to demonstrate Class 1 or Class 2 EFB operation in the anticipated operating envelope of the aircraft in which they will be used.

(1) Non-EFB Non-Interference Testing. It is the user’s/operator’s responsibility to determine that the operation of a PED will not interfere, in any way, with the operation of aircraft equipment. AC 91.21-1 addresses non-interference testing for non-critical phases of flight only and is not adequate when Type B applications can be used during all phases of flight. Class 1 and Class 2 EFB require additional guidance for non-interference testing contained in subparagrahs 10k and l, in addition to the guidance in AC 91.21-1.

(2) EFB PED Non-Interference Compliance Test Method. In order to operate a PED in other than a non-critical phase of flight, the user/operator is responsible for ensuring that the PED will not interfere in any way with the operation of aircraft equipment. The following methods are applicable to Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs with Type B applications required for use during all phases of flight. The user/operator may use either Method 1 or Method 2 for non-interference testing.

(a) The two following steps complete Method 1 for compliance with PED non-interference testing for all phases of flight.

1. Step 1 is to conduct an electromagnetic interference (EMI) test in accordance with RTCA/DO-160, section 21, paragraph M. An EFB vendor or other source can conduct this Step 1 test for an EFB user/operator. An evaluation of the results of the RTCA/DO-160 EMI test can be used to determine if an adequate margin exists between the EMI emitted by the PED and the interference susceptibility threshold of aircraft equipment. If Step 1 testing determines adequate margins exist for all interference, both front door and back door susceptibility, then method 1 is complete. It is necessary to complete Step 2 testing if Step 1 testing identifies inadequate margins for interference, or either front door or back door susceptibility.

2. Step 2 testing is specific to each aircraft model in which the PED will be operated. Test the specific PED equipment in operation on the aircraft to show that no interference of aircraft equipment occurs from the operation of the PED. Step 2 testing is conducted in an actual aircraft and credit may be given to other similarly equipped aircraft of the same make and model as the one tested.

(b) Method 2 for compliance with PED non-interference testing for all phases of flight is a complete test in each aircraft using an industry standard checklist. This industry standard checklist should be of the extent normally considered acceptable for non-interference testing of a PED in an aircraft for all phases of flight. Credit may be given to other similarly equipped aircraft of the same make and model as the one tested.

(3) Transmitting Portable Electronic Devices (T-PED). In order to operate a T-PED in other than a non-critical phase of flight, the user/operator is responsible to ensure the T-PED will not interfere with the operation of the aircraft equipment in any way. The following method is applicable to all Class 1 or Class 2 EFBs with Type B applications required for use during all phases of flight. Non-interference testing for T-PEDs consists of two separate test requirements.

(a) Test Requirement 1. Each T-PED should have a frequency assessment based on the frequency and power output of the T-PED. This frequency assessment should consider Federal Communications Commission (FCC) frequency standards and be in accordance with applicable processes set forth in RTCA/DO-294C, Guidance on Allowing Transmitting Portable Electronic Devices (T-PEDs) on Aircraft. This frequency assessment must confirm that no interference of aircraft or ground equipment will occur as a result of intentional transmissions from these devices.

(b) Test Requirement 2. Once a frequency assessment determines there will be no interference from the T-PED’s intentional transmissions, test each T-PED while operating using either Method 1 or Method 2 for basic non-interference testing requirements described above. This basic non-interference testing is applicable to both an EFB integrated, T-PED and a T-PED that is remote to an EFB. When a T-PED is EFB integrated complete the basic non-interference testing both with and without the T-PED function being operative. If a T-PED is located remote from the EFB, the T-PED basic non-interference testing is independent from the EFB non-interference testing. T-PED position is very critical to T-PED non-interference testing. Clearly define and adhere to the operating/testing locations of a T-PED in T-PED operating procedures.

(4) Rapid Depressurization Testing.

(a) Environmental Tests. Other environmental testing, specifically testing for rapid depressurization, may be needed. However, since many Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs were originally COTS electronics adopted for aviation use, testing done on a specific EFB model configuration may be applied to other aircraft and these rapid decompression tests need not be duplicated. It is the responsibility of the operator to provide documentation that these tests have been accomplished on a representative sample of the EFB. The testing of operational EFBs should be avoided when possible to preclude the infliction of unknown damage to the unit during testing.

(b) Rapid Decompression Testing. Determining an EFB device’s functional capability requires rapid decompression testing when utilizing Type B software applications in pressurized aircraft unless alternate procedures or paper backup is available. When using only Type A applications on the EFB, rapid decompression testing is not required. The information from the rapid decompression test is used to establish the procedural requirements for the use of that EFB device in a pressurized aircraft. Rapid decompression testing must comply with RTCA DO-160 guidelines for rapid decompression testing up to the maximum operating altitude of the aircraft in which the EFB is to be used. Similarity of a particular EFB to a unit already tested may be used to comply with this requirement. It is the responsibility of the operator to provide the rationale for the similarity.

1. Pressurized Aircraft. It is necessary to conduct rapid decompression testing for Class 1 and/or Class 2 EFB devices when the EFB has Type B applications and is used to remove paper-based aeronautical charts in a pressurized aircraft in flight. When a Class 1 or Class 2 EFB demonstrates rapid decompression while turned on and remains reliably operating during the rapid decompression test, then no mitigating procedures need be developed beyond dual redundancy. If a Class 1 or Class 2 EFB device demonstrates rapid decompression testing while turned off and is fully functional following rapid decompression, then procedures will need to be developed to ensure that one of the two EFBs onboard the aircraft remains off or configured so that no damage will be incurred should rapid decompression occur in flight above 10,000 feet mean sea level (MSL).

2. Un-Pressurized Aircraft. Rapid decompression testing is not required for a Class 1 or Class 2 EFB used in an un-pressurized aircraft. It is required that the EFB be demonstrated to reliably operate up to the maximum operating altitude of the aircraft. If EFB operation at maximum operating altitude is not attainable, procedures must be established to preclude operation of the EFB above the maximum demonstrated EFB operation altitude while still maintaining availability of required aeronautical information.

j. EFB Mounting Devices.

(1) Design of Mounting Device. Position the EFB mounting device (or other securing mechanism) in a way that does not obstruct visual or physical access to aircraft controls and/or displays, flightcrew ingress or egress, or external vision. The design of the mount should allow the user easy access to the EFB controls and a clear view of the EFB display while in use. Consider the following design practices:

(a) The mount and associated mechanism should not impede the flightcrew in the performance of any task (normal, abnormal, or emergency) associated with operating any aircraft system.

(b) Mounting devices should be able to lock in position easily. Selection of positions should be adjustable enough to accommodate a range of flightcrew member preferences. In addition, the range of available movement should accommodate the expected range of users’ physical abilities (i.e., anthropometric constraints). Locking mechanisms should be of the low-wear type that will minimize slippage after extended periods of normal use. Crashworthiness considerations will need to be considered in the design of this device. This includes the appropriate restraint of any device when in use.

(c) A method should be provided to secure, lock, or stow the mount in a position out of the way of flightcrew member operations when not in use.

(d) If the EFB requires cabling to mate with aircraft systems or other EFBs, and if the cable is not run inside the mount, the cable should not hang loosely in a way that compromises task performance and safety. Flightcrew members should be able to easily secure the cables out of the way during aircraft operations (e.g., cable tether straps).

(e) Cables that are external to the mount should be of sufficient length to perform the intended tasks. Cables that are too long or too short could present an operational or safety hazard.

(2) Placement of Mounting Device. Mount the device so that the EFB is easily accessible. When the EFB is in use and is being viewed or controlled, it should be within 90 degrees on either side of each pilot’s line of sight. If using an EFB to display flight-critical information such as for navigation, terrain, and obstacle warnings that require immediate action, takeoff and landing V-speeds, or for functions other than SA, then such information needs to be in the pilot’s primary field of view (FOV). This requirement does not apply if the information is not being directly monitored from the EFB during flight. For example, an EFB may generate takeoff and landing V-speeds, but these speeds are used to set speed bugs or are entered into the FMS, and the airspeed indicator is the sole reference for the V-speeds. In this case, the EFB need not be located in the pilot’s primary FOV. A 90-degree viewing angle may be unacceptable for certain EFB applications if aspects of the display quality are degraded at large viewing angles (e.g., the display colors wash out or the displayed color contrast is not discernible at the installation viewing angle).

(3) Mounting EFB Equipment. An unsafe condition may be inadvertently created when attaching any EFB control yoke attachment/mechanism or mounting device. For example, the weight of the EFB and mounting bracket combination may affect flight control system dynamics, even though the mount alone may be light enough to be insignificant. The mount must be installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations. Design approval for a yoke-mounted EFB must specify the size, shape, weight, and attachment means of any portable device mounted on the flight control yoke. EFB equipment, when mounted and/or installed, should not present a safety-related risk or associated hazard to any flightcrew member. It is necessary to provide a means to store or secure the device when not in use. Additionally, the unit (or its mounting structure) should not present a physical hazard in the event of a hard landing, crash landing, or water ditching. EFBs and their power cords should not impede emergency egress.

k. Stowage Area for EFB. EFB stowage is required for all EFBs not secured in or on a mounting device. If an EFB mounting device is not provided, designate an area to stow the EFB. Stowage requires an inherent means to prevent unwanted EFB movement when not in use. Do this in a manner that prevents the device from jamming flight controls, damaging flight deck equipment, or injuring flightcrew members should the device move about as a result of turbulence, maneuvering, or other action. Acceptable stowage locations for a Class 1 EFB includes the inside compartments of the pilot’s flight kit.

l. Data Connectivity with Aircraft Systems (Wired or Wireless). This section applies to both portable and installed EFBs. Typically, installed EFBs will have an interface protection built into the installed EFB, while portable EFBs will have a separate data connectivity provision installed in the aircraft. All EFBs using data connectivity provisions to aircraft systems must incorporate an interface protection device (e.g., physical partitioning or read-only access) to ensure that the data connection required by the device, and its software applications, have no adverse effects on other aircraft systems. EFBs having data connectivity to aircraft systems, either wired or wireless, may read or transmit data to and from aircraft systems, provided the connection and interface protection device is defined as part of the aircraft type design. This connectivity includes data bus and communication systems access (e.g., through an avionics data bus, server, network interface device, or wireless network). Use the following guidance for read-only and transmit-receive data interface protection devices:

(1) Read-Only Access. The design of interface protection devices that provide read-only access must ensure protection by using one-way communication of data.

(2) Transmit-Receive Access. The design of interface protection devices that provide transmit (talk) and receive (read) capability must include:

(a) Partition. The design must provide a means of partition for applications that have not been approved from installed systems on the aircraft.

(b) Non-Interference. The design must include a means to ensure that EFB operation, malfunction, or failure does not adversely affect other installed aircraft systems to which a connection is made (i.e., non-essential, essential, and critical).

(c) Security Considerations. The design of interface protection devices enabling connection of EFBs to existing aircraft equipment, systems, data buses, or networks must not introduce potential security vulnerabilities and threats in terms of computer viruses, worms, unauthorized access, and malicious access. Design the data interface protection device to prevent any potential security threats. Provide plans for verifying and maintaining the security protection mechanisms and functionality to adequately address each threat.

11. EFB SYSTEM DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS.

a. EFB System Design and Usability. It is necessary to evaluate the human factors/pilot interface characteristics of the EFB system. Special attention should be paid to new or unique features that may affect pilot performance.

b. Human/Machine Interface. The EFB user interface should provide a consistent and intuitive user interface within and across various EFB applications. The interface design (including, but not limited to, data entry methods, color-coding philosophies, and symbology) should be consistent across the EFB and various hosted applications. These applications should also be compatible with other flight deck systems.

c. Legibility of Text. Text displayed on the EFB should be legible to the typical user at the intended viewing distance(s) and under the full range of lighting conditions expected on a flight deck, including use in direct sunlight. Users should be able to adjust the screen brightness of an EFB independently of the brightness of other displays on the flight deck. In addition, when incorporating an automatic brightness adjustment, it should operate independently for each EFB in the flight deck. Buttons and labels should have adequate illumination for night use. All controls must be properly labeled for their intended function. Consideration should be given to the long-term display degradation as a result of abrasion and aging.

d. Electronic Display of Aeronautical Charts.

(1) Electronic aeronautical charts should provide a level of information integrity comparable to paper charts. Visual, instrument, and aerodrome charts (see International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Annex 4) that are depicted should contain the information necessary, in appropriate form, to conduct the operation to at least a level of safety equivalent to that provided by paper charts. The screen size and resolution must be demonstrated to display information in a comparable manner to paper aeronautical charts and the data it is intended to replace. The screen must display an instrument approach procedure (IAP) chart in an acceptable aeronautical chart format similar to a published paper chart. The screen must be large enough to show the entire IAP chart at once, with the equivalent degree of legibility and clarity as a paper chart. This requirement is not meant to preclude panning and zooming features, but is intended to prevent a workload increase during the approach phase of flight. Alternate representations of IAP charts will need to be evaluated for operational suitability by the FSB process for functionality and human factors. Aeronautical navigation charts (i.e., VFR navigation charts, low and high altitude en route charts, and terminal procedure publications) will need to be evaluated for operational suitability by the FSB process. Panning, scrolling, zooming, rotating, or other active manipulation is permissible for these Type B applications. An EFB display may not be capable of presenting an entire aerodrome chart (airport diagram) if the chart is the expanded detail (fold over) type. In this case, a moving map centering feature (not own-ship position) may be desirable. Aerodrome charts must include all information useful for airport operation. For a description of the requirements for AMMD, see AC 20-159.

NOTE: Software with an airworthiness approval performing an intended function of aeronautical charting as a replacement for paper could be utilized to support operational requirements without the need for further operational evaluation for use.

(2) The Operational Suitability Report (OSR)/FSB report should include, but not be limited to, the following:

  • Pilot workload in both single-pilot- and multicrew-flown aircraft;
  • Size, resolution, and legibility of symbols and text;
  • Access to desired charts;
  • Access to information within a chart;
  • Grouping of information;
  • General layout;
  • Orientation (e.g., track-up, north-up); and
  • Depiction of scale information.

e. Responsiveness of Application. The system should provide feedback to the user when user input is accepted. If the system is busy with internal tasks that preclude immediate processing of user input (e.g., calculations, self-test, or data refresh), the EFB should display a “system busy” indicator (e.g., clock icon) to inform the user that the system is occupied and cannot process inputs immediately. The timeliness of system response to user input should be consistent with an application’s intended function. The feedback and system response times should be predictable to avoid flightcrew distractions and/or uncertainty.

f. Off-Screen Text and Content. If the document segment is not visible in its entirety in the available display area, such as during “zoom” or “pan” operations, the existence of off-screen content should be clearly indicated in a consistent way. For some intended functions it may be unacceptable if certain portions of documents are not visible. The basis of this evaluation should be on the application and intended operational function. If there is a cursor, it should be visible on the screen at all times while in use.

g. Active Regions. Active regions are regions to which special user commands apply. The active region can be text, a graphic image, a window, frame, or other document object. These regions should be clearly indicated.

h. Managing Multiple Open Applications and Documents. The electronic document application should provide continuous indication of which application and/or document is active if the system supports multiple open documents, or if the system allows multiple open applications. The active document is the one that is currently displayed and responds to user actions. Under non-emergency, normal operations, the user should be able to select which of the open applications or documents is currently active. In addition, the user should be able to find which flight deck applications are running and switch to any one of these applications easily. When the user returns to an application that was running in the background, it should appear in the same state as when the user left that application, other than differences associated with the progress or completion of processing performed in the background.

i. Input Devices. In choosing and designing input devices such as keyboards or cursor-control devices, operators should consider the type of entry to be made and flight deck environmental factors, such as turbulence, that could affect the usability of that input device. Typically, the performance parameters of cursor control devices are tailored for the intended application function as well as for the flight deck environment.

j. Flightcrew Workload. The EFB software design should minimize flightcrew workload and head-down time. The positioning, use, and stowage of the EFB should not result in unacceptable flightcrew workload. Avoid complex, multi-step data entry tasks during takeoff, landing, and other critical phases of flight. An evaluation of EFB intended functions should include a qualitative assessment of incremental pilot workload, as well as pilot system interfaces and their safety implications. If the intended function of an EFB includes use during critical phases of flight, such as during takeoff and landing or during abnormal and emergency operations, its use should be evaluated during simulated or actual aircraft operations under those conditions.

k. Messages and the Use of Colors. For any EFB system, EFB messages and reminders should meet the requirements in § 23.1322 or § 25.1322, as is appropriate for the intended aircraft. While the regulations refer to lights, the intent should be generalized to extend to the use of colors on displays and controls. That is, the color red should be used only to indicate a warning level condition. Amber should be used to indicate a caution level condition. Any other color may be used for items other than warnings or cautions, providing that the colors used differ sufficiently from the colors prescribed to avoid possible confusion. EFB messages and reminders should be integrated with (or compatible with) presentation of other flight deck system alerts. EFB messages, both visual and auditory, should be inhibited during critical phases of flight. An EFB application should avoid flashing text or symbols. Listed messages should be prioritized and the message prioritization scheme evaluated and documented. Additionally, during critical phases of flight, the continuous presentation of required flight information must be without interruption. Examples of unwanted interruptions include un-commanded overlays, popups, or preemptive messages (except those indicating the failure or degradation of the current EFB application). However, if there is a regulatory or TSO requirement that conflicts with the recommendation above, it supersedes this guidance.

l. System Error Messages. If an application is fully or partially disabled, or is not visible or accessible to the user, it may be desirable to have a positive indication of its status available to the user upon request. Certain non-essential applications such as e-mail connectivity and administrative reports may require an error message when the user actually attempts to access the function rather than an immediate status annunciation when a failure occurs. EFB status and fault messages should be prioritized and the message prioritization scheme evaluated and documented.

m. Data Entry Screening and Error Messages. If user-entered data is not of the correct format or type needed by the application, the EFB should not accept the data. The EFB should provide an error message that communicates which entry is suspect and that specifies what type of data it expects. The EFB system and application software should incorporate input error checking that detects input errors at the earliest possible point during entry, rather than on completion of a possibly lengthy invalid entry.

n. Error and Failure Modes.

(1) Flightcrew Error. The system design should minimize the occurrence and effects of flightcrew error and maximize the identification and resolution of errors. For example, terms for specific types of data or the format for entry of latitude/longitude should be the same across systems. Data entry methods, color-coding philosophies, and symbology should be as consistent as possible across the various hosted EFB applications. These applications should also be compatible with other flight deck systems.

(2) Identifying Failure Modes. The possible effects of undetected errors in each EFB application should be evaluated. The assessment should address the adequacy of the human/machine interface, accessibility of controls, ability to view controls, annunciations, displays and printers, and the effect on flightcrew workload and head-down time. The assessment should also consider the effects of flightcrew (procedural) errors determined by comments from the professional pilot community. The EFB system should be capable of alerting the flightcrew of probable EFB application/system failures.

o. Integrity Considerations. The operator must demonstrate that the EFB performs its intended functions. Additionally, data contained in the data files should be of sufficient integrity to perform the intended functions without producing false or hazardously misleading information.

12. AUTHORIZATION PROCESS. The introduction and use of EFBs in the cockpit and cabin of parts 121, 125, and 135 operations requires authorization from the PI. This requirement includes FAA evaluation of all operating procedures, pertinent training modules, checklists, operations manuals, training manuals, maintenance programs, MELs, other pertinent documents, and reporting procedures.

a. Part 91 Operations. This guidance material also applies to operators of large and turbine-powered multiengine aircraft operating under part 91 subpart F where the operating regulations require specific functionality and/or equipage. Other part 91 operations do not require any specific authorization for EFB operations, provided the EFB does not replace any system or equipment required by the regulations. This AC provides guidance for all EFB equipages. In order for a PED to be considered an EFB, its functions must conform to the guidance in this AC.

b. General Process for Approval or Acceptance. FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 1, The General Process for Approval and Acceptance, and Volume 4, Chapter 15,

Electronic Flight Bag Operational Authorization Process, contain instructions for the completion of a five-phase process. The process leads to formal operational approval and consists of the following five phases:

(1) Phase one of the process begins when an operator requests authorization from the FAA. The FAA and the operator should reach a common understanding of what the operator must do, what role the FAA will have, and what reports and documents will be included as part of the authorization process.

(2) Phase two begins when the operator submits a plan to the FAA for formal evaluation. During this phase, the FAA must ensure that the plan is complete and in an acceptable format before it can conduct a thorough review and analysis. The operator coordinates the plan with the PI or other inspectors, as assigned. The PI or other assigned inspectors will facilitate coordination with the AEG and the Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), as necessary.

(3) Phase three begins when the FAA starts its in-depth review and analysis of the operator’s plan for regulatory compliance, safe operating procedures, a logical sequence, and other areas (e.g., flightcrew and dispatcher qualifications, acceptable procedures, and schedules for accomplishment).

(4) Phase four is the major phase of the process and involves validation testing. In this phase, the operator conducts specific operations for the purpose of data collection or for FAA observation purposes. Phase four concludes when the operator provides sufficient proof to satisfy the FAA’s requirement for meeting all the plan objectives or when the operator is unable to complete them satisfactorily.

(5) Phase five begins after the successful completion (or termination) of the validation phase. In this phase, the FAA grants authorization for those elements in the plan that were successfully completed and documented in the FSB report, or sends the operator a letter of disapproval for those elements that were not completed or were terminated. The PI grants authorization for the operational use of the EFB through the issuance of OpSpec A061, Use of Electronic Flight Bag. (See 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 18, Section 3, Part A Operations Specifications—General.)

c. Operator Responsibilities. In addition to close coordination with the local Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), certificate management office (CMO), and certificate management unit (CMU), to obtain authorization for EFB use, the following steps

(in chronological order) are suggested:

(1) Make application in a form and manner acceptable to the FAA.

(2) Demonstrate a process of ensuring initial and continuing reliability for each specific unit.

(3) Demonstrate that the radio magnetic interference/electromagnetic interference tests have been performed satisfactorily.

(4) Demonstrate that the EFBs can be properly stowed, secured and/or mounted in the aircraft.

(5) Demonstrate that any electronic receptacles used for connection of the EFB to an aircraft system have been installed using FAA-approved procedures.

(6) Demonstrate successful rapid decompression testing has been accomplished, if applicable.

(7) Develop a Policy and Procedures Manual (PPM) that may include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • For single-pilot- and multicrew-flown aircraft, appropriate procedures for EFB use during all phases of flight;
  • Procedures to follow when one unit fails (where multiple units are carried onboard the aircraft);
  • Procedures to follow when all units fail (the procedures should specifically identify what alternate means to use to obtain data);
  • A revision process procedure/method that ensures appropriate database accuracy and currency;
  • Courseware to be used while conducting training;
  • Procedures that document the knowledge of the user (e.g., training received, evaluation forms, test results, etc.);
  • A list of the data loaded and maintained in each unit; and
  • ICAs in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations (also include these instructions in the inspection/maintenance program).

(8) Operators transitioning to a paperless cockpit should carry paper backups of all the information on the EFB during a validation period. The backup should be readily available to the crew. During this period the operator should validate that the EFB is as available and reliable as the paper-based system being replaced. This validation period should include a 6-month operational test evaluation where the EFB system(s) with all appropriate backup products will be available to the crew. The backup products and the EFB are not used simultaneously during the evaluation period, but the backup products are available if needed. The operator will issue a final report detailing the training effectiveness, operational effectiveness, and reliability of the EFB.

d. Operational Procedures Development.

(1) EFB Intended Function. The intended function(s) of EFBs may vary depending on the device used and the software applications hosted by the computer. It is extremely important that the operator specifically define the intended EFB functions in a clear and concise manner. Operational procedures developed to achieve a specific intended function or use should consider the applications listed in the attached appendices.

 

(2) Operator Responsibilities. Operators will be expected to:

(a) Have procedures that define expectations of how the flightcrew should use each EFB function during ground operations and under all flight conditions;

(b) Provide the procedures to flightcrews;

(c) Provide procedures for normal, abnormal, and emergency use; and

(d) Review and determine whether to modify those existing policies and procedures affected by the introduction of EFBs into line operations.

(3) Procedural Considerations.

(a) Procedures for Using EFBs with Other Flight Deck Systems. Flightcrew procedures will ensure that the flightcrew knows what aircraft system to use for a given purpose, especially when both the aircraft and EFB are providing information. Procedures should also be designed to define the actions to be taken when information provided by an EFB does not agree with that from other flight deck sources, or when one EFB disagrees with another. If an EFB simultaneously displays information that existing cockpit automation displays, procedures to identify which information source will be primary and which source will be secondary need to be developed (and procedures to identify under what conditions to use the backup source). Whenever possible and without compromising innovation in design/use, EFB/user interfaces should be consistent (but not necessarily identical) with the flight deck design philosophy.

(b) Flightcrew Awareness of EFB Software/Database Revisions. The operator should have a procedure in place to allow flightcrews to confirm the revision numbers and/or dates of EFB flight databases and software installed on their units for each flight. (Databases that do not adversely affect flight operations such as maintenance log forms, a list of airport codes, or a captain’s atlas, for example, do not require the confirmation of revision dates by flightcrews.) An example of a date-sensitive revision is an aeronautical chart database on a 28-day revision cycle. Procedures should specify what action to take if the applications or databases loaded on the EFB are out-of-date.

(c) Procedures to Mitigate and/or Control Workload. Procedures that mitigate and/or control additional workloads created by using an EFB will need to be addressed.

(d) Defining Responsibilities for Performance Calculations. The operator should develop procedures that define any new roles that the flightcrew and dispatch may have in creating, reviewing, and using performance calculations supported by EFBs.

(e) Shutdown Procedures. Shutdown procedures for EFBs should:

  • Be incorporated into normal flightcrew shutdown checklist procedures.
  • Allow the EFB operating system and hosted applications to remain “stable” after multiple startups and shutdowns.

 

e. EFB Configuration Control. The operator’s EFB specification documents must list the make and model of the authorized EFB equipment and include at least the following configuration information, which is also required to support OpSpec A061:

(1) Operating system to include version control;

(2) Application program version control;

(3) Approved source for the database updates; and

(4) Make and model of the EFB hardware, including a tracking process for internal subcomponents whose replacement/upgrade may necessitate additional non-interference testing.

f. Mitigation Strategy. During the transition period to a paperless cockpit, an operator will need to establish a reliable backup means of providing the information required by the regulations to the flightcrew. During this period, an EFB system must demonstrate that it produces records that are as available and reliable as those provided by the current paper information system. Operators should establish system architecture and procedural mitigations to provide a reliable means of displaying information required by the operating rules to the flightcrew. This will ensure an equivalent level of safety and integrity as the current paper-based products. Mitigation may be accomplished by a combination of the following:

(1) System design;

(2) Separate and backup power sources;

(3) Redundant EFB applications hosted on different EFB platforms;

(4) Paper products accessible for use by crewmembers; and/or

(5) Procedural means.

g. Procedural Mitigations. If one or more onboard EFBs fail, resulting in loss of function or the presentation of false or hazardously misleading information, a contingency plan or process will need to be in place to provide the required information. For example, as a backup to eliminating printed approach charts, an acceptable transition to a paperless cockpit could include the following:

Carrying paper products for a given time period to validate EFB reliability by quantitative means;

Using a printing device to print all applicable data required for the flight; or

Using an aircraft fax machine to uplink equivalent paper documents to the cockpit.

h. Removal of Paper-Based Information. The risk mitigation process must be completed prior to removal of the paper-based information associated with a particular EFB application. These requirements also apply to an operator who intends to begin operation of any aircraft type without paper-based information.

i. Database Update Process.

(1) The operator needs to establish a method for revising EFB databases. The method of data revision should ensure integrity of the data the operator loads and not negatively impact the integrity of the EFB operation. Especially when using internet and/or wireless means, procedures must exist to protect the EFB data from corruption. Database revisions do not include application software or operating system changes. Application software and/or operating system program changes must be controlled and tested prior to use in flight. Operators should not perform database and/or application software changes during operations (taxi, takeoff, in-flight, landing).

(2) Operators also need to establish revision control procedures so that flightcrews and others can ensure that the contents of database are current and complete. These revision control procedures may be similar to the revision control procedures used for paper or other storage media. For data that is subject to a revision cycle control process, it should be readily evident to the user which revision cycle is currently loaded into the system.

j. Software Revision Process.

(1) It is the responsibility of the operator and/or the application software vendor to ensure that its operating system and Type A and Type B application programs meet the intended function. Unauthorized modification of any database or the loading of any new or additional software intended for operational use is not permitted unless that software can be demonstrated to comply with the original intended use. For Type C applications, operators should use FAA-approved Service Bulletins (SB) or the minor change process defined in the current edition of AC 21-40, Application Guide for Obtaining a Supplemental Type Certificate, or Order 8110.4, Type Certification. In addition to the operator’s responsibilities described above, it is also the responsibility of the pilot in command (PIC) to verify that any EFB depiction of an en route, terminal area, approach, airport map, or sectional is current and up-to-date. One means for doing this is to ensure that each PIC becomes familiar with all available information concerning that flight, to include receipt of appropriate Notices to Airmen (NOTAM) prior to departure and prior to arrival.

(2) The operator should identify a means to demonstrate that adequate security measures are in place to prevent malicious introduction of unauthorized modifications to the EFB’s operating system, its specific hosted applications, and any of the databases or data links used to enable its hosted applications (i.e., security risk assessment). The operator also needs to protect the EFB from possible contamination from external viruses.

k. Special Data Storage and Retrieval Considerations.

(1) The EFB system needs to permit any authorized representative of the Administrator or the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to retrieve, view, or print the information contained in any EFB system upon reasonable request. If the FAA or the NTSB requires an operator to provide information, the operator must provide the data in a format that the requesting agency can use.

(2) Operators should establish procedures to archive or retain old data. For archived data, the length of time that the data is kept depends on the kind of information being archived. Some information, such as maintenance historical data, should be kept for the life of the aircraft. It may also be necessary to keep old versions of software and operating systems to properly retrieve archived data. Operators should download maintenance discrepancy logs into a permanent record at least weekly.

l. Training. Training should reflect the level of the functionality and complexity as agreed upon by the operator and the PI. Training should address flightcrew and maintenance personnel requirements, as appropriate.

(1) Aviation safety inspectors (ASI) may wish to reference applicable FAA/Industry Training Standards (FITS) to determine the best practices for training and use of the EFB in a manner pertinent to part 91 operations. Determine the appropriate FITS program in consultation with the equipment manufacturer and/or the General Aviation and Commercial Division (AFS-800), FAA Headquarters (HQ), Washington, DC.

(2) Certificated operators requesting to conduct operations using EFB cockpit applications should use the training guidance in FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 19, Training Programs and Airman Qualifications. FAA guidance requires all parts 121 and 135 operators to develop a curriculum segment for the EFB system, which may consist of a ground training simulation and, if needed, a flight training segment. The EFB curriculum segment should include an outline of the training, appropriate courseware, and the instructional delivery method. Each EFB training module should include the following elements:

(a) A description of an EFB, its capabilities, and the applications for which the operator will use the EFB system and its components and peripherals. This should include theory of operation and the training should ensure that flightcrews understand the dependencies associated with the sources and limitations of the information.

(b) A description of EFB controls, displays, symbology, and failure modes. EFB failure modes and flightcrew procedures should include a description of the EFB system (e.g., EFB signal processor, switches, and installed databases, such as an airport surface or en route moving map). If color is a significant EFB application feature, then training materials should include color illustrations.

(c) An AFMS or another documentation that provides conditions, limitations, and procedures for the use of the EFB system and its associated equipment. For instance, operators should train flightcrews on how to ensure that the airport charts and manuals are current, and what to do if they find that the software and/or databases are out-of-date. Only EFB provisions (mounts, wiring, etc.) for Class 2 EFBs, or installation for Class 3 EFBs, require an AFMS, unless approved by TSO. Class 1 and Class 2 EFBs and Type A and Type B EFB applications may require an alternative means of documentation that provides conditions, limitations, and procedures for use.

(d) Descriptions of authorized special flight maneuvers, operations, and procedures the operator conducts when using an EFB.

(e) Any special pilot/controller procedures when using EFB-based information.

(f) Geographical areas authorized for specific EFB operations, if applicable.

(g) Authorized methods to defer inoperative EFB equipment.

(3) Operator training should also provide an opportunity for instruction, demonstration, and practice using the actual or simulated EFB equipment and displays. Base the EFB qualification curriculum segment (required for parts 121 and 135 operators) on functionality and complexity as agreed upon by the operator and PI. In addition, EFB components installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations may contain EFB training guidance in the airplane’s FSB report.

(4) Parts 121 and 135 operators are required to conduct initial fleet training. PIs will issue a letter authorizing an operator to instruct personnel under the EFB curriculum segment, pending an evaluation of training effectiveness. This also allows FAA inspectors who are responsible for certificate management to become familiar with the operator’s EFB system and equipment. After the PI evaluates the operator’s EFB curriculum segment and determines that it is satisfactory, the PI issues an interim authorization to the operator. This authorizes the operator to continue training in accordance with the operator’s approved training program.

m. Pilot Training Program.

(1) Parts 121 and 135 Operators. Except when under the supervision of an appropriately trained check airman, the flightcrew may need to complete an approved training program before being authorized to use the EFB equipment. However, flightcrew members should have satisfactorily completed the ground school portion of the EFB training program, if required. Training as outlined in this AC is only applicable to those flightcrew members that actually operate the equipment. Training is not required of crewmembers that are not authorized to use the equipment, even though it may be installed in the aircraft, unless it is operated under the supervision of a check airman. For air carrier operations, initial qualification with the EFB may require that the flightcrew members demonstrate satisfactory proficiency with the EFB to an FAA inspector or check airman; this may be completed during a line check.

(2) Part 125 Operators. Although no training program requirements exist for part 125 operators, the flightcrew members should have satisfactorily completed the ground school portion of the EFB training program before performing under the supervision of a check airman (part 125) or evaluation by an authorized instructor. The PI may authorize an individual (e.g., the company chief pilot, company check airman, or training course provider) to complete this evaluation. The flightcrew must have a satisfactory evaluation of their performance in the use of the EFB in flight before using the equipment in normal operations.

(3) Part 91 Operators. The primary source of operational and training guidance will be provided through the FITS, which can be obtained through the equipment manufacturer or AFS­800 at Washington HQ. The appropriate FITS program may be used to determine the appropriate best practices for familiarization and use of the equipment. Each operator’s EFB program should identify and document user training in support of the use of an EFB.

n. Simulator and Flight Evaluations.

(1) Simulator Evaluations. Simulators and other approved training devices

(such as procedures trainers) may be used as a tool to evaluate the overall quality of the training given and/or evaluate EFB system performance before granting authorization for use. The level of simulation fidelity required depends upon the type of use/credit being sought. Some of the EFB characteristics and flight deck integration issues that should be evaluated via simulation include:

  • The flightcrew’s use of displays;
  • EFB control use;
  • Alert reactions;
  • Auto-ranging configuration;
  • Self-tests;
  • Flightcrew procedures; and
  • Failure mode analysis.

(2) Flight Evaluations.

(a) Base the number of flight evaluations required to validate a particular EFB system before authorizing its use (including its hosted applications) on:

  • The type of aircraft;
  • Aircraft system architecture;
  • Flightcrew workload considerations;
  • Credit given for previously certified installations; and
  • Past simulator and ground testing.

(b) The PI needs to evaluate the actual requirement for a flight test for each request. The PI will determine if an approved training device or an actual flight evaluation is required. For example, first-time model installations and first-time hosted applications will generally require a flight test. If adequate evaluation on the ground or in simulators of changes in the EFB system, including software upgrades, is not possible, it may require flight testing.

o. Need for Approved Manuals. The aircraft must carry onboard an FAA-approved AFMS at all times when the EFB equipment is installed in accordance with applicable airworthiness regulations. Notwithstanding, § 121.141 permits an operator to carry a manual that meets the requirements of § 121.133 onboard a transport category aircraft in lieu of the AFM, provided that the manual contains all AFM/AFMS limitations and identifies them as AFM/AFMS requirements.

p. ICAs.

(1) Although a source independent of the operator may provide on-going maintenance and support for EFB equipment, the operator is responsible for compliance with all regulatory requirements.

(2) The maintenance or inspection program should identify inspection items, establish time-in-service intervals for maintenance and inspections, and provide the details of the proposed

methods and procedures. The maintenance or inspection program should also include ICAs for the STC or FAA design or installation approval.

(3) It is important for operators to coordinate early in the process with their PI on airworthiness-related considerations to determine the appropriate authorizations necessary for each EFB application.

q. MELs. Operators may update their MELs to reflect the installation of this equipment. Changes made to the operator’s MEL should be made in accordance with the approved Master Minimum Equipment List (MMEL).

r. EFB Substitution/Use in More Than One Aircraft. The operator may substitute compatible EFBs for use in other aircraft. Specific procedures to ensure that an EFB is fully compatible with other aircraft and their systems are necessary prior to placement into service. It is also necessary to develop procedures to ensure that any aircraft specific data captured in EFB memory is archived for that aircraft when the EFB system moves to another aircraft. For Class 3 replacement EFBs, it will be necessary to ensure that the replacement EFBs are authorized for use by the FAA.

s. User Feedback. Parts 121 and 135 operators should implement a formal process for gathering feedback. Use this process during design, installation, modifications, or improvements to procedures and/or training.

t. Paperless Authorization.

(1) Certificated Operators. FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 18, Section 3, Part A Operations Specifications—General, OpSpec A061, and Volume 4, Chapter 15, Electronic Flight Bag Operational Authorization Process, contain general policy guidance and requirements for obtaining authorization for use of EFBs by certificated operators. The issuance of OpSpec A061 gives operational authorization for an air carrier or commercial operator who intends to use EFBs for flight operations. It may necessary to issue or amended other OpSpecs, as appropriate. The OpSpec paragraph must reference the company documents, records, or manuals presented with the operator’s application.

(2) Part 91 (Noncertificated Operators). EFBs used in part 91 operations in lieu of paper reference material is authorized provided the EFB meets the criteria set forth in this AC for the intended functions. The evaluation and suitability for in-flight use of an EFB in lieu of paper reference material is the responsibility of the aircraft operator and the PIC. Any Type A or Type B EFB application, as defined in this AC, may be substituted for the paper equivalent. It requires no formal operational approval as long as the guidelines of this AC are followed.

(a) Any Type A or Type B EFB application, as defined in this AC, may be substituted for the paper equivalent. When the EFB replaces aeronautical information required by part 91, then a secondary or backup source of aeronautical information necessary for the flight must be available to the pilot in the aircraft. The secondary or backup information may be either traditional paper-based material or displayed electronically by other means.

(b) The aircraft operator and/or PIC is responsible to show compliance with all the requirements of subparagraph 12c. This should be in written form onboard the aircraft. The EFB system on board must be functionally equivalent to the paper reference material which the information is replacing. The pilot verifies that all information used for navigation, aircraft operation, or performance planning is current, up-to-date, and valid.

(c) The aircraft operator and/or PIC is responsible to make an assessment of the human/machine interface and aspects governing Crew Resource Management (CRM) in accordance with the human factors considerations of this AC. This requires training in EFB procedures and use, preflight checks of the system, the use of each operational function on the EFB, and procedures for cross-checking data entry and computed information. Also included in this training are the conditions (including phases of flight) when EFB use should be terminated.

u. Electronic Authorization. Final authorization for use of electronic documents, in lieu of required paper documents, requires:

(1) Operational evaluation, including the validation report, completion.

(2) Reliable EFB system information available for each flightcrew member;

(3) Compliance with FSB reports and/or OSRs, if available;

(4) EFB maintenance and fault reporting procedures are in place;

(5) Non-interference testing as specified within AC 91.21-1 and this AC;

(6) When Type B applications, and certain eligible Type C applications (e.g., AMMD) software is used, results from rapid decompression testing and related mitigating procedures; and

(7) OpSpec A061 authorization, as appropriate.

 

John M. Allen

Director, Flight Standards Service

 

APPENDIX 1. EXAMPLES OF TYPE A EFB APPLICATIONS REQUIRING

PRINCIPAL INSPECTOR (PI) AUTHORIZATION

  • Flight Operations Manuals (FOM).
  • Company standard operating procedures (SOP).
  • Airport diversion policy guidance, including a list of special designated airports and/or approved airports with emergency medical service (EMS) support facilities.
  • Operations specifications (OpSpecs).
  • Cockpit observer briefing cards.
  • For smaller aircraft, pilot’s operating handbooks (POH), including POH, section IX supplements.
  • Aircraft performance data manuals (fixed, non-interactive material).
  • Airport performance restrictions manual (such as a reference for takeoff and landing performance calculations).
  • Weight and Balance (W&B) manual, if a separate manual (fixed, non-interactive material).
  • Other aircraft performance data manuals, including specialized performance data for use in conjunction with advanced wake vortex modeling techniques, land-and-hold-short operations (LAHSO) predictions, etc. (fixed, non-interactive material for planning purposes).
  • Maintenance manuals.
  • Aircraft maintenance reporting manuals.
  • Aircraft flight log and servicing records.
  • Autopilot approach and autoland records.
  • Flight management system (FMS)/flight management and guidance system problem report forms.
  • Aircraft parts manuals.
  • Service Bulletins (SB)/published Airworthiness Directives (AD), etc.
  • Air Transport Association of America (ATA) 100-format maintenance discrepancy writeup codes.
  • Required Very high frequency Omnidirectional Range (VOR) check records.
  • Minimum equipment lists (MEL).
  • Configuration Deviation Lists (CDL).
  • Federal, State, and airport-specific rules and regulations.
  • Airport/Facility Directory (A/FD) data (e.g., fuel availability, LAHSO distances for specific runway combinations, etc.).
  • Noise abatement procedures for arriving and departing aircraft.
  • Published (graphical) pilot Notices to Airmen (NOTAM).
  • International Operations Manuals, including regional supplementary information and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) differences.
  • Aeronautical Information Publications (AIP).
  • Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM).
  • Oceanic navigation progress logs.
  • Pilot flight and duty-time logs.
  • Flightcrew required rest logs.
  • Flightcrew qualification logs (such as aircraft qualifications, Class II flightcrew qualifications, Category (CAT) III) qualifications, high minimums logs, night currency logs, pilot-in-command (PIC) qualifications for special areas, routes, and airports for 14 CFR part 121 certificate holders and special airports qualifications).
  • Captain’s report (i.e., captain’s incident reporting form).
  • Flightcrew survey forms (various).
  • EMS reference library (for use during medical emergencies).
  • Trip scheduling and bid lists.
  • Aircraft’s captain’s logs.
  • Aircraft’s CAT II/CAT III landing records.
  • Antiterrorism profile data.
  • Hazardous materials (hazmat)/oxidizer look-up tables.
  • ICAO Doc 9481-AN/928, Emergency Response Guidance for Aircraft Incidents Involving Dangerous Goods.
  • Customs declaration and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) agriculture inspection/clearance form.
  • Special reporting forms, such as near midair collision (NMAC) reports, National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS), bird and wildlife encounters, owner-initiated Service Difficulty Reports (SDR), etc.
  • Incidents of interference to aircraft electronic equipment from devices carried aboard aircraft.
  • Current fuel prices at various airports.
  • Realistic training modules, including “PC at home” training applications, “off-duty” training materials review, and pre-flight “mission” rehearsals.
  • Check airman and flight instructor records.
  • Aircraft operating and information manuals (performance information, W&B, systems, limitations, etc.).
  • Airline Policy and Procedures Manuals (PPM).
  • Aircraft Maintenance Manuals.
  • Title 14 CFR.
  • Look-up and completion of various reporting forms; e.g., company-specific forms,NASA’s ASRS reports, NMAC reports, wildlife strike and hazard reports, etc.
  • Maintenance personnel signoff of discrepancy form. (Maintenance discrepancy logs need to be downloaded into a permanent record at least weekly.)
  • Flightcrew qualifications recordkeeping, including aircraft qualifications, CAT II/III, high minimums, landing currency, flight and duty time, etc.
  • PIC currency requirements.
  • Passenger information requests—some are directed to the gate or to the agent meeting the flight (e.g., special meal requests, wheelchair requirements, unaccompanied minors, gate information for connecting flights, flights being held for connecting passengers, etc.).
  • Cabin maintenance writeups. (Maintenance discrepancy logs need to be downloaded into a permanent record at least weekly.)

 

APPENDIX 2. EXAMPLES OF TYPE B EFB APPLICATIONS REQUIRING PI

AUTHORIZATION FOR USE

  • Aircraft Flight Manuals (AFM) (or Rotorcraft Flight Manuals (RFM)) and Aircraft Flight Manual Supplement (AFMS).
  • Flight Attendant (F/A) manuals.
  • FOMs, including emergency procedures.
  • Approved electronic signature using public/private key technology (PKI).
  • Takeoff, en route, approach and landing, missed approach, go-around, etc., performance calculations. Data derived from algorithmic data or performance calculations based on software algorithms.
  • Power settings for reduced thrust settings.
  • Runway limiting performance calculations.
  • Cost index modeling.
  • Master flight plan/updating.
  • Interactive plotting for Class II navigation.
  • Mission rehearsals.
  • W&B calculations.
  • Maintenance discrepancy signoff logs. (Maintenance discrepancy logs need to be downloaded into a permanent record at least weekly.)
  • Cabin maintenance discrepancy reporting forms/location codes. (Maintenance discrepancy logs need to be downloaded into a permanent record at least weekly.)
  • Non-interactive electronic approach charts in a pre-composed format from accepted sources.
  • Panning, zooming, scrolling, and rotation for approach charts.
  • Pre-composed or dynamic interactive electronic aeronautical charts (e.g., en route, area, approach, and airport surface maps) including, but not limited to, centering and page turning but without display of aircraft/own-ship position.
  • Electronic checklists, including normal, abnormal, and emergency. See the current edition of Advisory Circular (AC) 120-64, Operational Use & Modification of Electronic Checklists, for additional guidance. EFB electronic checklists cannot be interactive with other aircraft systems.
  • Applications that make use of the Internet and/or other Aircraft Operational Communications (AOC) or company maintenance-specific data links to collect, process, and then disseminate data for uses such as spare parts and budget management, spares/inventory control, unscheduled maintenance scheduling, etc. (Maintenance discrepancy logs need to be downloaded into a permanent record at least weekly.)
  • Weather and aeronautical data.
  • Cabin-mounted video and aircraft exterior surveillance camera displays.

APPENDIX 3. REFERENCES AND RELATED READING MATERIALS

1. RELATED 14 CFRs. Parts 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 43, 91, 121, 125, and 135.

a. Airworthiness Regulations. These acceptable means of compliance refer to the applicable sections of parts 21, 23, 25, 27, and 29.

(1) Part 21, § 21.303;

(2) Part 23, §§ 23.771, 23.773, 23.777, 23.1301, 23.1303, 23.1309, 23.1311, 23.1321, 23.1322, 23.1331, 23.1351, 23.1353, 23.1357, 23.1359, 23.1361, 23.1365, 23.1367, 23.1381,23.1431, 23.1501, 23.1523, 23.1529, 23.1541,23.1543,23.1559,23.1581,23.1583, and 23.1585;

(3) Part 25, §§ 25.303, 25.305, 25.562, 25.625, 25.771, 25.773, 25.777, 25.789, 25.863, 25.1301, 25.1303, 25.1309, 25.1321, 25.1322, 25.1331, 25.1351, 25.1353, 25.1357, 25.1431, 25.1523, 25.1529, 25.1543, 25.1581, 25.1583, 25.1585, and 25.1587;

(4) Part 27, §§ 27.303, 27.305, 27.562, 27.625, 27.771, 27.773, 27.777, 27.863, 27.1301, 27.1303, 27.1309, 27.1321, 27.1322, 27.1351, 27.1353, 27.1357, 27.1523, 27.1529, 27.1543, 27.1581, 27.1583, 27.1585, and 27.1587; and

(5) Part 29, §§ 29.303, 29.305, 29.562, 29.625, 29.771, 29.773, 29.777, 29.863, 29.1301, 29.1303, 29.1309, 29.1321, 29.1322, 29.1331, 29.1351, 29.1353, 29.1357, 29.1431, 29.1523, 29.1529, 29.1543, 29.1581, 29.1583, 29.1585, 29.1587.

(6) Part 43 Appendix A and Appendix B.

b. Operating Regulations. These acceptable means of compliance refer to the applicable sections of parts 91, 121, 125, and 135.

(1) Part 91, §§ 91.9, 91.21, 91.103, 91.503, 91.605, and 91.611;

(2) Part 121, §§ 121.117, 121.133, 121.135, 121.137, 121.139, 121.141, 121.306, 121.549, 121.565, 121.571, 121.681, 121.683, 121.687, 121.689, 121.693, 121.695, 121.701, and 121.709;

(3) Part 125, §§ 125.23, 125.71, 125.73, 125.75, 125.204, 125.215, 125.323, 125.327, 125.383, 125.403, 125.405, 125.407, and 125.411; and

(4) Part 135, §§ 135.21, 135.23, 135.63, 135.81, 135.83, 135.144, 135.179, and 135.293.

2. FAA ACs, ORDERS, POLICY STATEMENTS, AND TECHNICAL STANDARD ORDERS (TSO). You can find ACs, orders, policy statements, and TSOs on the MyFAA employee Web site at https://employees.faa.gov/. Inspectors can access orders and notices through the Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS) at http://fsims.avs.faa.gov/. Operators and the public may find this information at http://fsims.faa.gov/.

a. ACs (current editions):

  • AC 00-62, Internet Communications of Aviation Weather and NOTAMS.
  • AC 20-115, Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics, Inc., Document RTCA/DO-178B.
  • AC 20-140, Guidelines for Design Approval of Aircraft Data Communications Systems.
  • AC 21-40, Guide for Obtaining a Supplemental Type Certificate.
  • AC 23.1309-1, System Safety Analysis and Assessment for Part 23 Airplanes.
  • AC 23.1311-1, Installation of Electronic Displays in Part 23 Airplanes.
  • AC 25-10, Guidance for Installation of Miscellaneous, Nonrequired Electrical Equipment.
  • AC 25-11, Electronic Flight Deck Displays.
  • AC 25-16, Electrical Fault and Fire Prevention and Protection.
  • AC 25.1523-1, Minimum Flightcrew.
  • AC 25.1581-1, Airplane Flight Manual.
  • AC 91.21-1, Use of Portable Electronic Devices Aboard Aircraft.
  • AC 120-64, Operational Use & Modification of Electronic Checklists.
  • AC 120-71, Standard Operating Procedures for Flight Deck Crewmembers.
  • b. FAA Orders, Policy Statements, and TSOs (current editions):
  • Order 8110.4, Type Certification.
  • Order 8150.1, Technical Standard Order Program.
  • Order 8260.3, United States Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS).
  • Order 8900.1, Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS).
  • Policy Statement (PS) PS-ANM111-1999-99-2, Guidance for Reviewing Certification Plans to Address Human Factors for Certification of Transport Airplane Flight Decks.
  • Policy Statement No. PS ANM100-01-03A, Factors to Consider When Reviewing an Applicant’s Proposed Human Factors Methods for Compliance for Flight Deck Certification.
  • TSO-C113, Airborne Multipurpose Electronic Displays.
  • TSO-C165, Electronic Map Display Equipment for Graphical Depiction of Aircraft Position.

c. Other Documents:

  • Human Factors Considerations in the Design and Evaluation of Electronic Flight Bags (EFBs), Version 2: Basic Functions, Chandra, Divya C, and Mangold, Susan J., DOT-VNTSC-FAA-03-07, September 2003.
  • FAA and Industry Guide to Product Certification, September 2004.
  • Human Factors for Flight Deck Certification Personnel, Technical Report DOT/FAA/RD-93/5, July 1993. Copies may be ordered from the National Technical Information Service.

d. Industry Documents (current editions):

  • RTCA/DO-160, Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment.
  • RTCA/DO-178, Software Considerations in Airborne Systems and Equipment Certification.
  • RTCA/DO-199, Potential Interference to Aircraft Electronic Equipment From Devices Carried Aboard.
  • RTCA/DO-200, Standards for Processing Aeronautical Data.
  • RTCA/DO-201, Standards for Aeronautical Information.
  • RTCA/DO-208, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for Airborne Supplemental Navigation Equipment Using Global Positioning System (GPS).
  • RTCA/DO-233, Portable Electronic Devices Carried on Board Aircraft.
  • RTCA/DO-242, Minimum Aviation System Performance Standards for Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B).
  • RTCA/DO-249, Development and Implementation Planning Guide for Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) Applications.
  • RTCA/DO-254, Design Assurance Guidance for Airborne Electronic Hardware.
  • RTCA/DO-255, Requirements Specification for Avionics Computer Resource (ACR).
  • RTCA/DO-257, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for the Depiction of Navigation Information on Electronic Maps.
  • RTCA/DO-260, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for 1090 MHz Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), and Traffic Information Services (TIS-B).
  • RTCA/DO-264, Guidelines for Approval of the Provision and Use of Air Traffic Services Supported by Data Communications.
  • RTCA/DO-267, Minimum Aviation System Performance Standards (MASPS) for Flight Information Service-Broadcast (FIS-B) Data Link.
  • RTCA/DO-272, User Requirements for Aerodrome Mapping Information.
  • RTCA/DO-276, User Requirements for Terrain and Obstacle Data.
  • RTCA/DO-282, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast.
  • RTCA/DO-294, Guidance on Allowing Transmitting Portable Electronic Devices (T-PEDs) on Aircraft.
  • RTCA/DO-311, Minimum Operational Performance Standards for Rechargeable Lithium Battery Systems.
  • ARINC 424-13, Navigation System Data Base.
  • ARINC 653, Avionics Application Software Standard Interface.
    • ARINC 653P1-3, Avionics Application Software Interface, Part 1, Required Services.
    • ARINC 653P2-1, Avionics Application Software Standard Interface, Part 2- Extended Services.
    • ARINC 653P3, Avionics Application Software Standard Interface, Part 3, Conformity Test Specification.
  • ARINC 660, CNS/ATM Avionics, Functional Allocation and Recommended Architectures.
  • ARINC 661-4, Cockpit Display System Interfaces to User System.
  • ARINC 828-2, Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Standard Interface.
  • ARINC 840, Electronic Filght Bag (EFB) Application Control Interface (ACI) Standard.
  • ARP 4754, Certification Considerations for Highly-Integrated or Complex Aircraft Systems.
  • ARP 4761, Guidelines and Methods for Conducting the Safety Assessment Process on Civil Airborne Systems and Equipment.
  • ARP 5621, Electronic Display of Aeronautical Information (Charts).
  • ARP 5289, Electronic Aeronautical Symbols.
  • UN ST/SG/AC.10/11/ Rev.4-2003, Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods-Manual of Tests and Criteria, Fourth Revised Edition.
  • UN ST/SG/AC.10/34/Add.2, Amendments to the fourth revised edition of the Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods-Manual of Test and Criteria.
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication 800-30, Risk Management Guide for Information Technology Systems.

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  • […] CALL FOR COMMENTS: The FAA has released a draft of AC 120-76B, “Guidelines for the Certification, Airworthiness, and Operational Use of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB)”. Learn more about the new policy here. […]

    • Unfortunately, the InFO doesn’t tell us anything new. The editorial staff is working on an a full analysis of the draft AC, and we’ll begin publishing a few reports this weekend and early next week. You can expect a separate commentary on the InFo. As a preview, I can tell you that it reflects some of the guidance spelled out in the new AC, mainly: GPS on an EFB is a no-no (although the Feds don’ explain the regulatory basis that allow them to dictate this to Part 91 – including Part 91 F – operators; knee-board EFBs are OK, but yoke mounts (like the popular Gulfstream dovetail mounts) are only legal if they have an STC; Part 91 operators shoud DOCUMENT their non-interference tests, training and other operational approval justifications. Part 135 Operators already know they have to do this. One of the things the InFo hints at, but fails to really address, is that just because one operator is using a particular EFB configuration, it doesn’t mean its OK for another operator to use the same EFB configuration without jumping through the same hoops. In other words, just because Jeppesen and EJM approved the iPad, it doesn’t mean another Part 135 operator can use the iPad unless they do their own EMI testing, rapid decompression testing, develop document procedures, and jump through the same hoops as EJM. It might be easier for operators if Jeppesen publicly released documentation of the iPad and iPad2 decompression tests. To date, Jeppesen has not responded to PaperlessCockpit.com’s requests for copies of the testing certification proving that the iPad was tested to acceptable standards. Perhaps its time to ask again…

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