Small Airplane Considerations for the Guidelines for Development of Civil Aircraft and Systems
On September 30, 2011, certification authorities released Advisory Circular 20-174, Development of Civil Aircraft and Systems, which recognizes the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Aerospace Recommended Practice (ARP) 4754A and the European equivalent ED-79A , in order to address “the concern of possible development errors due to the ever increasing complexity of modern aircraft and systems.” ARP4754A/ED-79A describes a process of development assurance which helps reduce the risk of design errors in the development of aircraft systems. This process is necessary for complex systems not easily comprehended by deterministic analyses or tests. This ARP was developed “in the context of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 25,” a category which includes complex systems such as full fly-by-wire flight controls. However, this paper shows that such systems are the exception to most, recent civil airplane designs.