[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 6 (Wednesday, January 9, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 1765-1772]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-00238]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 25

[Docket No. FAA-2012-0812; Notice No. 13-01]
RIN 2120-AK14


Requirements for Chemical Oxygen Generators Installed on 
Transport Category Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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SUMMARY: This rulemaking would amend the type certification 
requirements for chemical oxygen generators installed on transport 
category airplanes so the generators are secure and not subject to 
misuse. The intended effect of this action would be to increase the 
level of security for future transport category airplane designs. This 
proposal does not directly affect the existing fleet.

DATES: Send comments on or before March 11, 2013.

ADDRESSES: Send comments identified by docket number FAA-2012-0812 
using any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for sending your 
comments electronically.
     Mail: Send comments to Docket Operations, M-30; U.S. 
Department of Transportation (DOT), 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Room 
W12-140, West Building Ground Floor, Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery or Courier: Take comments to Docket 
Operations in Room W12-140 of the West Building Ground Floor at 1200 
New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
     Fax: Fax comments to Docket Operations at 202-493-2251.
    Privacy: The FAA will post all comments it receives, without 
change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal 
information the commenter provides. Using the search function of the 
docket Web site, anyone can find and read the electronic form of all 
comments received into any FAA dockets, including the name of the 
individual sending the comment (or signing the comment for an 
association, business, labor union, etc.). DOT's complete Privacy Act 
Statement can be found in the Federal Register published on April 11, 
2000 (65 FR 19477-19478), as well as at http://DocketsInfo.dot.gov.
    Docket: Background documents or comments received may be read at 
http://www.regulations.gov at any time. Follow the online instructions 
for accessing the docket or Docket Operations in Room W12-140 of the 
West Building Ground Floor at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, 
DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jeff Gardlin, Airframe and Cabin 
Safety Branch, ANM-115, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft 
Certification Service, Federal Aviation Administration, Northwest 
Mountain Region, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; 
telephone: (425) 227-2136; email: jeff.gardlin@faa.gov.
    For legal questions concerning this action, contact Douglas 
Anderson, Federal Aviation Administration, Office of the Regional 
Counsel, ANM-7, Northwest Mountain Region, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., 
Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: (425) 227-2166; email: 
douglas.anderson@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: See the ``Additional Information'' section 
for information on how to comment on this proposal and how the FAA will 
handle comments received. The ``Additional Information'' section also 
contains related information about the docket, privacy, the handling of 
proprietary or confidential business information. In addition, there is 
information on obtaining copies of related rulemaking documents.

[[Page 1766]]

Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety is found in 
Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes 
the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation 
Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority.
    This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in 
Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701, ``General 
requirements.'' Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing 
regulations required in the interest of safety for the design and 
performance of aircraft; regulations and minimum standards in the 
interest of safety for inspecting, servicing, and overhauling aircraft; 
and regulations for other practices, methods, and procedures the 
Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This 
regulation is within the scope of that authority because it would 
prescribe new safety standards for the design of transport category 
airplanes.

List of Abbreviations and Acronyms Frequently Used in This Document

AC--Advisory Circular
AD--Airworthiness Directive
ARAC--Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee
ARC--Aviation Rulemaking Committee
COG--Chemical Oxygen Generator
LOARC--Lavatory Oxygen Aviation Rulemaking Committee
SaO2--Blood Oxygen Saturation Level
SFAR--Special Federal Aviation Regulation

I. Overview of the Proposed Rule

    This proposed rule would adopt new standards for COGs installed in 
transport category airplanes. These proposed new standards, based on 
the LOARC's recommendations, would apply to future applications for 
type certificates, address potential security vulnerabilities with 
those devices, and provide performance-based options for acceptable COG 
installations.

II. Background

    The incorporation of security measures into an airplane design is a 
significant development in aviation safety that was initiated over 20 
years ago. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) adopted 
standards to address several key elements of airplane design to reduce 
its vulnerability to terrorist acts following the bombing of a Pan 
American 747 airplane near Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988. These standards 
were adopted as Amendment 97 to Annex 8 of the 1944 Convention on Civil 
Aviation.
    In January 2002, the FAA adopted the first regulations that address 
security vulnerabilities in airplanes. The FAA later incorporated all 
of the ICAO standards into regulations by Amendment 25-127 to Title 14, 
Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 25. That amendment 
complemented other rulemaking initiatives that address security 
measures for flightdeck doors and added a new Sec.  25.795, Security 
considerations. ICAO does not have recommended practices related to 
COGs. Nevertheless, the FAA has determined that COGs present an 
unacceptable vulnerability and has exercised its authority to take 
remedial action to correct this vulnerability in airplane design.\1\
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    \1\ For example, the FAA has issued ADs to address issues with 
reinforced flightdeck doors that would not otherwise affect safety.
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    The FAA became aware of a security vulnerability with certain types 
of oxygen systems installed inside the lavatories of most transport 
category airplanes operating under 14 CFR part 121, as well as certain 
airplanes operating under part 129. As a result, in April 2011, the FAA 
issued AD 2011-04-09, mandating that these oxygen systems be rendered 
inoperative until the vulnerability could be eliminated.\2\ However, by 
rendering the oxygen systems inoperative to comply with the AD, the 
airplanes do not comply with the requirements of Sec. Sec.  25.1447, 
121.329, and 121.333. The AD contained a provisional allowance to 
permit noncompliance in the lavatories from those specific 
requirements.
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    \2\ FAA originally notified carriers in February 2011 and 
required immediate compliance. The AD was issued in March 2, 2011 
with a compliance date of March 14, 2011. See AD 2011-04-09, 
Airworthiness Directives: Various Transport Category Airplanes 
Equipped with Chemical Oxygen Generators Installed in a Lavatory, 
Docket No. FAA-2011-0157.
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    To further address that situation, the FAA also issued SFAR 111 \3\ 
to allow continued operation, delivery, and modification of affected 
airplanes, despite their non-compliance with the above-noted 
regulations. The AD and the SFAR (while still in effect) are interim 
measures to minimize the disruption to air commerce while the 
development of permanent solutions, including this proposed rule, are 
underway.
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    \3\ SFAR 111, Security Considerations for Lavatory Oxygen 
Systems (76 FR 12550, March 8, 2011), Docket No. FAA-2011-0186.
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    In addition, the FAA chartered the LOARC shortly after issuing SFAR 
111. The LOARC was tasked to make recommendations for new standards 
that would ensure the installation of a safe and secure COG system, 
including the best approach to implement those standards. The LOARC's 
recommendations also included the key issues involved in making a COG 
secure, and a summary of how those issues may affect implementation of 
new standards. The LOARC's recommendations are discussed in the 
``Lavatory Oxygen Aviation Rulemaking Committee'' section of this NPRM. 
Those LOARC recommendations also form the basis for this proposal.

A. Lavatory Oxygen Systems

    The minimum performance requirements for oxygen supply and oxygen 
mask presentation are contained in Sec. Sec.  25.1443 and 25.1447. The 
supplemental oxygen systems are necessary safety equipment in the event 
of loss of cabin pressure. Each occupant is required to have a 
supplemental oxygen supply immediately available if cabin pressure 
drops to a certain level. The regulations specifically require 
lavatories to be equipped with two oxygen masks connected to oxygen 
supply terminals and, for airplanes flying above 30,000 feet, automatic 
presentation of the masks to the occupants. Two masks are required 
inside a lavatory to address the situation where one person may be 
assisting another, such as an adult assisting a small child. The 
quantity of oxygen available to each occupant is based on the route 
flown and how quickly the airplane can descend to an altitude that does 
not require supplemental oxygen.
    Lavatory oxygen systems are generally similar to the systems 
provided for passenger and flight attendant use in the cabin. The 
intent of the supplemental oxygen requirements in 14 CFR part 25 is 
reinforced in the operational requirements of Sec. Sec.  121.329 and 
121.333, although neither section specifically references lavatories.
    The regulations do not specify the use of COGs as an oxygen supply. 
However, COGs are common because they tend to provide a sufficient 
oxygen supply while retaining the optimum size, weight, and 
maintainability for most operations. Because COGs produce oxygen 
through a chemical reaction that generates heat, there are requirements 
in Sec.  25.1450 to ensure that adjacent materials and systems are 
protected from damage and persons are protected from injury. Surface 
temperatures can reach temperatures up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, so 
the COG often has a protective shroud installed.

B. Safety Ramifications

    In issuing AD 2011-04-09 and SFAR 111, the FAA carefully considered 
the safety ramifications of removing supplemental oxygen from the 
lavatories of a significant portion of the

[[Page 1767]]

commercial fleet. The FAA conducted a risk analysis to assess the 
safety implications of temporarily \4\ not having supplemental oxygen 
available inside lavatories. To support the risk assessment, earlier 
studies involving passengers' use of supplemental oxygen were reviewed.
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    \4\ See AD 2012-11-09, Various Transport Category Airplanes (77 
FR 38000, June 26, 2012).
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    Several years ago in an unrelated initiative, the FAA tasked the 
ARAC to make recommendations for safety standards when airplanes 
operate in high altitudes. As part of its efforts, the ARAC did a 
comprehensive assessment of the frequency and nature of the need for 
supplemental oxygen systems in service.\5\ The ARAC identified 2,800 
instances over a 40-year period and categorized them by cause, 
severity, and consequence. The majority of these instances were caused 
by malfunctions of the cabin pressurization system. However, in none of 
those 2,800 instances was there a loss of life due to lack of oxygen. 
The ARAC used these data to make recommendations to the FAA for future 
rulemaking not related to this action.
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    \5\ FAA-Regulations and Policies, Aviation Rulemaking Advisory 
Committee: Transport Airplane and Engine Issue Area Mechanical 
System Harmonization Working Group, Task 3--Airplane Ventilation 
Systems (66 FR 39074, July 26, 2001).
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    The FAA reviewed the service history since those ARAC 
recommendations were made and found that the types and frequencies of 
incidents, as well as their causes, are consistent with the historical 
record. The relative risks and service history have not changed in any 
significant way since the ARAC recommendations were issued. With 
respect to SFAR 111, the assessment was limited to the lavatories, as 
opposed to the earlier ARAC task that applied to the entire airplane. 
The lavatories are sporadically occupied during flight and by a small 
number of passengers at any given time. This limits the potential 
impact on safety.
    The ARAC found the frequency of the types of severe occurrences 
necessitating the use of supplemental oxygen was around 
10-8/flight-hour for causes other than a malfunction of the 
pressurization system. These malfunctions tend to be slower losses of 
pressure, or are identified at lower altitudes, and therefore, they are 
not as critical for this situation. For the purposes of the assessment 
leading to SFAR 111, the FAA assumed the probability of an occupied 
lavatory is 50%. The probability of an event when supplemental oxygen 
is physiologically required is around 5x10-9/flight-hour. 
Since SFAR 111 was issued, there has been one decompression event due 
to a mechanical failure involving oxygen mask deployment and emergency 
descent. In that instance, no occupants were in a lavatory and no 
persons suffered any injury.

C. Lavatory Oxygen Aviation Rulemaking Committee

    As discussed above, the FAA chartered the LOARC to obtain 
recommendations from the affected public on what the new certification 
standards for COGs should be, as well as the best way to implement 
them. Specifically, the LOARC was tasked to:
    (1) Establish criteria for in-service, new production and new type 
design airplanes, preferably in the form of performance standards, for 
safe and secure installation of lavatory oxygen systems;
    (2) Determine whether the same criteria should apply to the 
existing fleet and to new production and type designs;
    (3) Establish what type of safety assessment approach should be 
used (e.g., in accordance with SAE International Document ARP5577 \6\ 
or Sec.  25.1309), and define the content and procedures of the safety 
assessment;
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    \6\ Aerospace Recommended Practice (ARP) 5577, Aircraft 
Lightning Direct Effects Certification, dated September 30, 2002.
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    (4) Determine whether tamper resistance, active tamper evidence, or 
different system design characteristics are equivalent options;
    (5) Develop guidance as necessary to satisfy the recommended 
criteria for each system design characteristic as appropriate; and
    (6) Consider the pros and cons of different implementation options 
and recommend a schedule(s) for implementation with the advantages and 
disadvantages identified.
    The LOARC identified five key subjects to focus on to develop its 
recommendations and fulfill its charter. Those subjects were:
     Design Considerations--identifying and characterizing the 
design constraints and key factors affecting an installation.
     Security Standards--identifying the necessary components 
of a secure installation, in terms of both new designs and for 
retrofit.
     System Performance--identifying the factors that affect 
system performance in general and how modifications to enhance security 
might affect system performance.
     Implementation Considerations--identifying the major 
factors in being able to implement the new requirements into the fleet 
as expeditiously as practicable, as well as making assessments of how 
long certain actions will take.
     Other Affected Areas--characterizing the parameters that 
resulted in the determination of a security vulnerability for lavatory 
COG installations and establishing criteria for evaluating other 
installations against those characteristics.
    A sub-group was formed for each of the focus areas. Each subject 
was explored in detail with respect to how it would affect the content 
of new standards and the ability to implement those new standards into 
the existing fleet. Using the inputs from the sub-groups, the LOARC 
made recommendations in a final report, which is available in the 
docket for this rulemaking.
    Some of the significant findings of the LOARC are summarized below. 
The LOARC concluded that security could be achieved through tamper-
resistance alone, through a combination of tamper-resistance and active 
tamper-evidence (e.g., an alarm), or by switching to a different means 
of supplying oxygen in lieu of a COG. For new type designs, any of 
these approaches would be feasible, and some could be adopted with 
minimal impact on cost or weight.
    As discussed below, the FAA is addressing the existing U.S. fleet 
via an AD. Although this proposal would not affect the existing U.S. 
fleet, the proposed standards would likely be used by international 
aviation authorities in approving installations for the retrofit of 
those fleets covered by their regulations. The discussion of the 
LOARC's conclusions regarding the implications for retrofit is included 
here, because it may aid the international community in reintroducing 
supplemental oxygen systems into affected airplane lavatories. From the 
standpoint of the existing U.S. fleet, the LOARC concluded that if a 
COG were to continue to be used, the majority of installations would 
likely require using a combination of the tamper-resistance and tamper-
evidence approaches.
    Incorporation of an active system to provide tamper-evidence would 
significantly increase complexity, cost, and time in implementing new 
designs into the existing U.S. fleet compared to other approaches for 
addressing the security concerns with COGs. This is because such a 
system must demonstrate a suitable level of reliability and not be 
susceptible to tampering. It would also require intervention on the 
part of the crew, which would result in new crew

[[Page 1768]]

procedures and training. In addition, most of the modification work 
must be done on the airplane, which can lead to unscheduled time out of 
service. All of these factors contribute to the complexity of the 
design, the time it takes to install and certificate the design, and 
the costs associated with incorporating the design.
    The LOARC concluded that switching to a different means of 
supplying oxygen might be the most efficient solution in a significant 
number of cases. However, because the COG is an optimized design for 
this application, there are currently no other types of systems 
available for the existing fleet. Nonetheless, some design approval 
holders may take this approach to avoid the issues associated with the 
active tamper-evidence approach.
    The LOARC further concluded that there is limited space available 
to modify existing designs or to add features. There is some 
correlation between the size of the airplane and the space available, 
but in almost all cases, there are very small tolerances on the size 
and shape of an oxygen source (COG or other) that will fit. Similarly, 
although moving the supplemental oxygen supply to a different location 
may be feasible for new designs, relocating the supplemental oxygen 
supply in existing fleets is limited by the space available in existing 
designs. Relocating the supplemental oxygen supply can also complicate 
activating the oxygen flow, since that is generally accomplished by 
pulling on the oxygen mask. Nevertheless, the LOARC concluded that 
there are practical design solutions, and, as discussed below under 
``Related Actions,'' the FAA has accepted the LOARC's recommendations.

D. New Technology

    Irrespective of the method chosen to provide supplemental oxygen, 
there may be means to indirectly mitigate the space constraints by 
changing the way in which the supplemental oxygen dosage is measured. 
Historically, oxygen systems have provided a constant tracheal partial 
pressure of oxygen in accordance with Sec.  25.1443. In order to 
maintain the requisite partial pressure, the system supplies oxygen at 
a given rate for a time period as determined by the routes being flown.
    Recent developments in system technology have made a more direct 
approach feasible for meeting the physiological oxygen requirement. 
This approach measures the oxygen saturation level in the blood, known 
as SaO2, instead of tracheal partial pressure. Because 
SaO2 is more directly indicative of whether adequate oxygen 
is being supplied, this approach has merit. Further, for a system that 
can maintain adequate SaO2, the total quantity of oxygen may 
be reduced, making the storage vessel smaller than one based on 
tracheal partial pressure. Using a smaller storage vessel makes such 
installations more practical by utilizing the existing locations. While 
there is no regulatory change proposed to incorporate SaO2, 
the FAA will consider this approach as a basis for a finding of an 
equivalent level of safety to the oxygen quantity requirements of Sec.  
25.1443, Minimum mass flow of supplemental oxygen.

E. Related Actions

    As previously discussed, the FAA began incorporating security 
measures into the airplane design in 2002. This proposal is keeping 
with that effort and reflects additional knowledge the FAA has acquired 
since then. The FAA recently superseded AD 2011-04-09 with AD 2012-11-
09, Various Transport Category Airplanes (77 FR 38000, June 26, 2012) 
to include terminating action for installations meeting requirements of 
this proposal. To enable affected operators and modifiers to obtain 
approval of COG installations in advance of finalizing this proposed 
rulemaking, the FAA has also issued Policy Statement PS-ANM-25-04 
regarding COGs using these proposed standards (based on the LOARC 
recommendations) as guidance for methods of compliance.\7\ The policy 
statement enables operators to satisfy the requirements in AD 2012-11-
09 while at the same time restoring a supplemental oxygen supply to 
lavatories.
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    \7\ PS-ANM-25-04, Chemical Oxygen Generator Installations, dated 
December 21, 2011.
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III. Discussion of the Proposal

A. New Requirements for Chemical Oxygen Generator Installations (Sec.  
25.795)

    The current requirements for COGs relate primarily to protecting 
the airplane and passengers from the heat produced by the generators. 
These standards are in Sec.  25.1450 and will continue to apply. The 
requirements of Sec.  25.1450 address safety requirements for COGs when 
correctly installed and operating, as well as predictable failures. 
These existing requirements do not consider the deliberate misuse of a 
COG, or the potential effects of that misuse.
    As previously discussed, Sec.  25.795 addresses the incorporation 
of security measures into an airplane design, following similar 
standards adopted by ICAO. Currently, Sec.  25.795 does not address 
COGs, as they were not considered at the time that regulation was 
adopted. Nevertheless, since the issues of concern stem from security 
considerations, the FAA has determined that the most logical location 
for these new COG standards is in Sec.  25.795, Security 
considerations.
    Again, the FAA is proposing standards based on recommendations from 
the LOARC. This proposal would amend Sec.  25.795 by requiring that 
each COG or its installation must be designed to be secure by meeting 
at least one of the following four conditions: (1) Provide effective 
resistance to tampering; (2) provide an effective combination of 
resistance to tampering and active tamper-evident features; (3) 
installing in a location or manner where any attempt to access the COG 
would be immediately obvious; and (4) by a combination of these 
approaches, provided the Administrator finds it to be a secure 
installation. These conditions are discussed in further detail below.
    There are two basic approaches to providing a secure lavatory COG 
installation: make a fully tamper-resistant installation, or 
incorporate a combined tamper-resistance and active tamper-evidence 
approach. Either of these approaches would be acceptable, but they 
involve different considerations.
    A COG that is inaccessible would be considered a tamper-resistant 
COG for the purposes of Sec.  25.795(d). This could be accomplished by 
locating the COG in an inaccessible area, or installing it in a more 
conventional location in such a way that access to it is not possible. 
The ARC considered whether to characterize such an installation as 
``tamper proof'' rather than ``tamper resistant.'' However, a literal 
interpretation of ``tamper proof'' was considered to be too stringent, 
since there would always be some conceivable, albeit unreasonable, 
method to overcome tamper-proof features. Nonetheless, where tamper 
resistance is the sole method of providing security, it is intended 
that the features be very robust.
    If the installation cannot rely solely on a tamper-resistance 
approach, it is acceptable to incorporate a combined tamper-resistance 
and active tamper-evidence approach, as previously stated. Using this 
combined approach would also necessitate changes to crew procedures and 
concurrent training to provide the same level of security. In this 
case, it is intervention that ultimately prevents misuse of the 
generator, so crew involvement is

[[Page 1769]]

essential. The use of a tamper-evidence approach alone is unacceptable, 
since this relies entirely on intervention and does not improve the 
security of the COG itself. Neither the LOARC nor the FAA considers a 
tamper-evidence approach alone to adequately provide the needed 
security.
    Another method of providing a secure installation is by locating 
the COG where any attempt to access it would be immediately obvious. In 
other words, the COG might be in a location where it is accessible, but 
anyone attempting to gain access to it would be immediately noticed 
before actually gaining access. This method would not be feasible 
inside lavatories since they are inherently isolated from view. This 
method is not the same as a sole tamper-evidence approach, which is 
only effective after access has begun and relies entirely on subsequent 
intervention.
    There may be any number of combinations used of tamper-resistance 
and tamper-evidence approaches that would be effective. Applicants 
would need to make specific proposals and obtain FAA approval for a 
given approach. In addition, there may be methods of providing a secure 
installation that involve other elements that would also be acceptable 
but are not yet defined. The intent of these proposed requirements 
would allow for those possibilities, while at the same time set a clear 
performance goal.
    In addition, acceptable methods of employing tamper-resistance and 
tamper-evidence approaches are discussed in proposed AC 25.795, 
Chemical Oxygen Generator Security Requirements. A copy of AC 25.795 
will be placed in the docket for this action.

B. Alternative Approaches

    The FAA and the LOARC recognize that the unique nature of COGs 
drives the identified security vulnerability. Although not proposed in 
this action, there are other means of delivering supplemental oxygen, 
such as a stored gas system (either centrally or locally installed), 
that could eliminate the security vulnerability. These systems are 
currently used in certain airplane types and could be easily 
incorporated for new airplane type designs.

C. General Provisions

    Although the installation of COGs in lavatories prompted the 
various rulemaking activities discussed in this proposal, the LOARC 
recommended applying the new standards to COG installations anywhere on 
the airplane, and the FAA agrees with this recommendation. The LOARC 
concluded that if the characteristic that makes the COG a risk exists 
in locations other than in lavatories, then those locations should also 
be subject to the same approval criteria. The LOARC did not attempt to 
identify any specific locations, but it developed assessment criteria 
to identify such locations. However, since lavatories are currently 
without supplemental oxygen, those are the locations with the greatest 
interest. The LOARC also concluded that the solution for other areas 
might be different than for lavatories. This information is also 
included in the above-noted proposed AC 25.795.

D. Operational Requirements

    The FAA has superseded AD 2011-04-09, with AD 2012-11-09 which 
includes requirements to retrofit the fleet of airplanes affected by AD 
2011-04-09. Superseding AD 2012-11-09 also applies to airplanes in 
production for which compliance relief was provided by SFAR 111. The 
expiration of SFAR 111 will correspond to the compliance date of AD 
2012-11-09, since the relief provided by the SFAR will no longer be 
necessary once operators have complied with that AD. As noted earlier, 
the FAA has issued Policy Statement PS-ANM-25-04 to facilitate the 
incorporation of designs meeting these proposed requirements. AD 2012-
11-09 references that policy as a potential means of compliance.
    The FAA does not intend any further mandate to retrofit oxygen 
generator systems because only lavatory COG installations that meet the 
criteria in Policy Statement PS-ANM-25-04 or in this NPRM would be 
approved. This means that even if there are some changes between this 
NPRM and the final rule, designs approved prior to the effective date 
of the final rule, in accordance with the policy, would not be 
affected. This applies to the design approval, not just to the 
airplanes on which the design is installed prior to the effective date 
of the final rule. Therefore, a design approved as an alternative means 
of compliance to AD 2011-04-09, or as a means of compliance to AD 2012-
11-09, will still be approved for installation on airplanes after the 
effective date of this rule.
    All affected airplanes need to be modified either in accordance 
with the standards in this proposed rule, or via a prior approval as 
discussed in Policy Statement PS-ANM-25-04 before the expiration date 
of SFAR 111. For new design approvals on airplanes subject to AD 2012-
11-09, or applications for type design changes after the effective date 
of the final rule, the FAA will use the requirements of the newly 
adopted Sec.  25.795(d) as the approval basis. For example, if a design 
is approved per Policy Statement PS-ANM-25-04, and an applicant applies 
to amend the design after the effective date of the final rule, the 
amended design must comply with the requirements of Sec.  25.795(d). 
For transport airplanes that are not subject to proposed AD 2012-NM-
004-AD (e.g., all-cargo airplanes), Sec. Sec.  21.17 and 21.101, as 
applicable, will be used to determine whether the requirements of Sec.  
25.795(d) must be met.

E. Miscellaneous Amendments (Sec.  25.1450)

    Section 25.1450, which contains the general standards for COGs, 
would be revised to refer to the new Sec.  25.795(d), in addition to 
the existing standards for COGs.

IV. Regulatory Notices and Analyses

A. Regulatory Evaluation

    Changes to Federal regulations must undergo several economic 
analyses. First, Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct that each 
Federal agency shall propose or adopt a regulation only upon a reasoned 
determination that the benefits of the intended regulation justify its 
costs. Second, the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-354) 
requires agencies to analyze the economic impact of regulatory changes 
on small entities. Third, the Trade Agreements Act (Pub. L. 96-39) 
prohibits agencies from setting standards that create unnecessary 
obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United States (U.S.). In 
developing U.S. standards, this Trade Act requires agencies to consider 
international standards and, where appropriate, that they be the basis 
of U.S. standards. Fourth, the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 
(Pub. L. 104-4) requires agencies to prepare a written assessment of 
the costs, benefits, and other effects of proposed or final rules that 
include a Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditure by state, 
local, or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private 
sector, of $100 million or more annually (adjusted for inflation with 
base year of 1995). This portion of the preamble summarizes the FAA's 
analysis of the economic impacts of this proposed rule.
    In conducting these analyses, FAA has determined that this proposed 
rule: (1) Would have benefits that justify its costs; (2) would not be 
an economically ``significant regulatory action'' as defined in section 
3(f) of Executive Order 12866; (3) would not be ``significant'' as 
defined in DOT's

[[Page 1770]]

Regulatory Policies and Procedures; (4) would not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities; (5) would 
not create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the U.S.; 
and (6) would not impose an unfunded mandate on state, local, or tribal 
governments, or on the private sector by exceeding the threshold 
identified above.
    Department of Transportation Order DOT 2100.5 prescribes policies 
and procedures for simplification, analysis, and review of regulations. 
If the expected cost impact is so minimal that a proposed or final rule 
does not warrant a full evaluation, this order allows that a statement 
to that effect and the basis for it to be included in the preamble if a 
full regulatory evaluation of the cost and benefits is not prepared. 
Such a determination has been made for this proposed rule. The 
reasoning for this determination follows:
    This proposed rule would apply only to future type-certificated, 
large transport airplane models. It would not affect any current 
airplanes or future airplanes built under an existing type certificate. 
The proposed requirements are technologically feasible, as evidenced by 
two new type certificate programs (the Boeing 787 and the Airbus 350) 
that include designs that would be in compliance with this proposed 
rule. The FAA does not believe that compliance with the proposed rule 
for future type certificates would require extensive airplane redesign.
    The FAA also believes that there would be little, if any, 
production airplane cost increases from complying with these proposed 
requirements. The FAA has learned that the emergency oxygen systems 
technology used in the Boeing 787 and the Airbus 350 could be 
transferrable to future type-certificate designs. Further, these 
technologies provide greater airline operational flexibility because 
they would allow the airplane to carry variable amounts of oxygen, 
which is not currently the case with COGs. Finally, future type-
certificate designs could still use the COG for emergency oxygen in 
other parts of the airplane with an alternative oxygen source within 
the lavatories. The FAA requests comments on its conclusions and these 
issues.
Total Estimated Benefits and Costs of This Proposed Rule
    The primary benefit from this proposed rule is that it would allow 
the airplane to continue to provide supplemental oxygen to individuals 
in lavatories during emergencies while ensuring that individuals in 
lavatories could not tamper with the supplemental oxygen system.
    The FAA believes that the proposed rule would impose minimal costs 
because it would only apply to new type-certificated airplane models so 
that the manufacturer would be able to design the most cost-effective 
emergency oxygen system for the model before construction would start 
on the first airplane. Again, the Boeing 787 and the Airbus 350 are two 
new type-certificate projects which include designs for supplemental 
oxygen systems that would be in compliance with this proposed rule. The 
FAA believes that similar emergency oxygen systems could be designed 
for future type-certificated airplanes at a minimal cost.
    The FAA requests comments on this initial conclusion of minimal 
expected costs for future type-certificated airplane models.
Who is affected by this rule?
    This rule affects all manufacturers of large transport category, 
certificated airplanes under part 25.
Source(s) of Information
    The primary source of information is the LOARC, which included part 
25 airplane manufacturers, other aviation safety regulatory agencies, 
manufacturers of oxygen generating systems, airlines, a pilot union, 
and a flight attendant union.

B. Regulatory Flexibility Determination

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-354) (RFA) 
establishes ``as a principle of regulatory issuance that agencies shall 
endeavor, consistent with the objectives of the rule and of applicable 
statutes, to fit regulatory and informational requirements to the scale 
of the businesses, organizations, and governmental jurisdictions 
subject to regulation. To achieve this principle, agencies are required 
to solicit and consider flexible regulatory proposals and to explain 
the rationale for their actions to assure that such proposals are given 
serious consideration.'' The RFA covers a wide-range of small entities, 
including small businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and small 
governmental jurisdictions.
    Agencies must perform a review to determine whether a proposed rule 
would have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. If the agency determines that it would, the agency must 
prepare an initial regulatory flexibility analysis as described in the 
RFA. However, if an agency determines that a proposed rule would not 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities, section 605(b) of the RFA provides that the head of the 
agency may so certify, and a regulatory flexibility analysis is not 
required. The certification must include a statement providing the 
factual basis for this determination, and the reasoning should be 
clear.
    The Small Business Administration defines a small airplane 
manufacturer as one that employs fewer than 1,500 people. As all the 
affected airplane manufacturers employ more than 1,500 people, this 
proposed rule would not affect small entities. Therefore, the FAA 
certifies that this proposed rule, if promulgated, would not have a 
significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
Specifically, the FAA requests comments on whether the proposed rule 
would create any specific compliance costs unique to small entities. 
Please provide detailed economic analysis to support any cost claims. 
The FAA also invites comments regarding other small-entity concerns 
with respect to this proposed rule.

C. International Trade Impact Assessment

    The Trade Agreements Act of 1979 (Pub. L. 96-39), as amended by the 
Uruguay Round Agreements Act (Pub. L. 103-465), prohibits Federal 
agencies from establishing standards or engaging in related activities 
that create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United 
States (U.S.). Pursuant to these Acts, the establishment of standards 
is not considered an unnecessary obstacle to the foreign commerce of 
the U.S., so long as the standards have a legitimate domestic 
objective, such as protection of safety, and does not operate in a 
manner that excludes imports that meet this objective. The statute also 
requires consideration of international standards and, where 
appropriate, that they be the basis for U.S. standards. The FAA has 
assessed the potential effect of this proposed rule and determined that 
it would improve safety and, therefore, is not an unnecessary obstacle 
to international trade.

D. Unfunded Mandates Assessment

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-
4) requires each Federal agency to prepare a written statement 
assessing the effects of any Federal mandate in a proposed or final 
agency rule that may result in an expenditure of $100 million or more 
(adjusted annually for inflation with the base year 1995) in any one 
year by state, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by 
the private sector; such

[[Page 1771]]

a mandate is deemed to be a ``significant regulatory action.'' The FAA 
currently uses an inflation-adjusted value of $143.1 million in lieu of 
$100 million. This proposed rule does not contain such a mandate; 
therefore, the requirements of Title II do not apply.

E. Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)) requires 
that the FAA consider the impact of paperwork and other information 
collection burdens imposed on the public. The FAA has determined that 
there would be no new requirement for information collection associated 
with this proposed rule.

F. International Compatibility and Cooperation

    In keeping with U.S. obligations under the Convention on 
International Civil Aviation, it is FAA policy to conform to 
International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Standards and 
Recommended Practices to the maximum extent practicable. The FAA has 
reviewed the corresponding ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices and 
has identified no differences with these proposed regulations.
    Executive Order 13609, Promoting International Regulatory 
Cooperation, promotes international regulatory cooperation to meet 
shared challenges involving health, safety, labor, security, 
environmental, and other issues and to reduce, eliminate, or prevent 
unnecessary differences in regulatory requirements. The FAA has 
analyzed this action under the policies and agency responsibilities of 
Executive Order 13609, and has determined that this action would have 
no effect on international regulatory cooperation.

G. Environmental Analysis

    FAA Order 1050.1E identifies FAA actions that are categorically 
excluded from preparation of an environmental assessment or 
environmental impact statement under the National Environmental Policy 
Act in the absence of extraordinary circumstances. The FAA has 
determined this rulemaking action qualifies for the categorical 
exclusion identified in paragraph 312f and involves no extraordinary 
circumstances.

V. Executive Order Determinations

A. Executive Order 12866

    See the ``Regulatory Evaluation'' discussion in the ``Regulatory 
Notices and Analyses'' section elsewhere in this preamble.

B. Executive Order 13132, Federalism

    The FAA has analyzed this proposed rule under the principles and 
criteria of Executive Order 13132, Federalism. The agency has 
determined that this action would not have a substantial direct effect 
on the States, or the relationship between the Federal Government and 
the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among 
the various levels of government, and, therefore, would not have 
Federalism implications.

C. Executive Order 13211, Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy 
Supply, Distribution, or Use

    The FAA analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13211, 
Actions Concerning Regulations that Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use (May 18, 2001). The agency has determined that it 
would not be a ``significant energy action'' under the executive order 
and would not be likely to have a significant adverse effect on the 
supply, distribution, or use of energy.

VI. Additional Information

A. Comments Invited

    The FAA invites interested persons to participate in this 
rulemaking by submitting written comments, data, or views. The agency 
also invites comments relating to the economic, environmental, energy, 
or federalism impacts that might result from adopting the proposals in 
this document. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion 
of the proposal, explain the reason for any recommended change, and 
include supporting data. To ensure the docket does not contain 
duplicate comments, commenters should send only one copy of written 
comments, or if comments are filed electronically, commenters should 
submit only one time.
    The FAA will file in the docket all comments it receives, as well 
as a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA 
personnel concerning this proposed rulemaking. Before acting on this 
proposal, the FAA will consider all comments it receives on or before 
the closing date for comments. The FAA will consider comments filed 
after the comment period has closed if it is possible to do so without 
incurring expense or delay. The agency may change this proposal in 
light of the comments it receives.
    Proprietary or Confidential Business Information: Commenters should 
not file proprietary or confidential business information in the 
docket. Such information must be sent or delivered directly to the 
person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of 
this document, and marked as proprietary or confidential. If submitting 
information on a disk or CD ROM, mark the outside of the disk or CD 
ROM, and identify electronically within the disk or CD ROM the specific 
information that is proprietary or confidential.
    Under 14 CFR 11.35(b), when the FAA is aware of proprietary 
information filed with a comment, the agency does not place it in the 
docket. It is held in a separate file to which the public does not have 
access, and the FAA places a note in the docket that it has received 
it. If the FAA receives a request to examine or copy this information, 
it treats it as any other request under the Freedom of Information Act 
(5 U.S.C. 552). The FAA processes such a request under Department of 
Transportation procedures found in 49 CFR part 7.

B. Availability of Rulemaking Documents

    An electronic copy of rulemaking documents may be obtained from the 
Internet by--
    1. Searching the Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov);
    2. Visiting the FAA's Regulations and Policies Web page at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies or
    3. Accessing the Government Printing Office's Web page at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html.
    Copies may also be obtained by sending a request to the Federal 
Aviation Administration, Office of Rulemaking, ARM-1, 800 Independence 
Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591, or by calling (202) 267-9680. 
Commenters must identify the docket or notice number of this 
rulemaking.
    All documents the FAA considered in developing this proposed rule, 
including economic analyses and technical reports, may be accessed from 
the Internet through the Federal eRulemaking Portal referenced in item 
(1) above.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 25

    Aircraft, Aviation safety, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

The Proposed Amendments

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation 
Administration proposes to amend chapter I of Title 14, Code of Federal 
Regulations as follows:

PART 25--AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES

0
1. The authority citation for part 25 continues to read as follows:


[[Page 1772]]


    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701, 44702 and 44704.

0
2. Amend Sec.  25.795 by redesignating paragraphs (d) and (e) as (e) 
and (f) respectively, and by adding a new paragraph (d) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  25.795  Security considerations.

* * * * *
    (d) Each chemical oxygen generator or its installation must be 
designed to be secure from deliberate manipulation by one of the 
following:
    (1) By providing effective resistance to tampering,
    (2) By providing an effective combination of resistance to 
tampering and active tamper-evident features,
    (3) By installation in a location or manner whereby any attempt to 
access the generator would be immediately obvious, or
    (4) By a combination of approaches specified in paragraphs (d)(1), 
(d)(2) and (d)(3) of this section that the Administrator finds provides 
a secure installation.
* * * * *
0
3. Amend Sec.  25.1450 by adding a new paragraph (b)(3) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  25.1450  Chemical oxygen generators.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (3) Except as provided in SFAR 109, each chemical oxygen generator 
installation must meet the requirements of Sec.  25.795(d).
* * * * *

    Issued in Washington, DC, on January 3, 2013.
Dorenda D. Baker,
Director, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-00238 Filed 1-8-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P