[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 177 (Thursday, September 14, 2017)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 43158-43160]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-19042]



[[Page 43158]]

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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2017-0560; Product Identifier 2016-NM-172-AD; Amendment 
39-19028; AD 2017-18-19]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of 
Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all 
Airbus Model A310-203, -204, -221, -222, -304, -322, -324, and -325 
airplanes. This AD was prompted by reports of cracking in the drainage 
holes on the lower skin panel in the center wing box between frames 
(FR) 42 and FR46. This AD requires repetitive rotating probe 
inspections for cracking of the trellis boom drainage holes, the holes 
in the stringers bottom, and the holes of the inner pump, and 
corrective actions if necessary. We are issuing this AD to address the 
unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: This AD is effective October 19, 2017.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of October 19, 
2017.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, 
contact Airbus SAS, Airworthiness Office--EAW, 1 Rond Point Maurice 
Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; 
fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; 
Internet: http://www.airbus.com. You may view this referenced service 
information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue 
SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material 
at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at 
http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. 
FAA-2017-0560.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-
0560; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 
5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket 
contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and 
other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone 
800-647-5527) is Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of 
Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dan Rodina, Aerospace Engineer, 
International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind 
Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone 425-227-2125; fax 425-227-
1149.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR 
part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to all Airbus Model A310-203, 
-204, -221, -222, -304, -322, -324, and -325 airplanes. The NPRM 
published in the Federal Register on June 20, 2017 (82 FR 28030) (``the 
NPRM''). The NPRM was prompted by reports of cracking in the drainage 
holes on the lower skin panel in the center wing box between frames 
FR42 and FR46. The NPRM proposed to require repetitive rotating probe 
inspections for cracking of the trellis boom drainage holes, the holes 
in the stringers bottom, and the holes of the inner pump, and 
corrective actions if necessary. We are issuing this AD to detect and 
correct cracking of trellis boom drainage holes, the holes in the 
stringers bottom, and the holes of the inner pump, which could result 
in reduced structural integrity of the wings.
    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical 
Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA 
Airworthiness Directive 2016-0196, dated September 30, 2016 (referred 
to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or 
``the MCAI''), to correct an unsafe condition for all Airbus Model 
A310-203, -204, -221, -222, -304, -322, -324, and -325 airplanes. The 
MCAI states:

    DGAC [Direction G[eacute]n[eacute]rale de l'Aviation Civile] 
France issued AD F-1992-106-132R7 to require certain inspections and 
modifications which addressed JAR/FAR [Joint Aviation Requirements/
Federal Aviation Regulations] 25-571 requirements, related to 
damage-tolerance and fatigue evaluation of structure. Following the 
Extended Design Service Goal activities as part of the Structure 
Task Group for the Airbus A310 program, EASA published AD 2007-0053, 
which replaced DGAC France AD F-1992-106-132R7.
    After EASA issued AD 2007-0053R1, the thresholds and the 
intervals of Airbus Service Bulletins (SB) A310-57-2050 and A310-57-
2064 were updated, prompting EASA to issue AD 2009-0057 [which 
corresponds to FAA AD 2011-10-06, Amendment 39-16687 (76 FR 27227, 
May 11, 2011)] and [EASA] AD 2007-0053 was revised (R2) accordingly. 
EASA AD 2009-0057 also required the accomplishment of the actions 
specified in Airbus SB A310-57-2048 at Revision 01.
    After EASA issued AD 2009-0057, in the frame of the Widespread 
Fatigue Damage campaign, new analysis has indicated the need for 
additional work included in Revision 03 of Airbus SB A310-57-2050.
    For the reason described above, this new [EASA] AD retains the 
requirements of EASA AD 2009-0057, which is superseded, and requires 
inspection and corrective actions as specified in Airbus SB A310-57-
2050 Revision 04.

    Required actions include a repetitive rotating probe inspection for 
cracking of certain holes in the stringers bottom, inner pumps, and the 
trellis boom; and corrective actions, i.e., repair of holes where 
cracks are discovered.
    The compliance times vary depending on airplane configuration. The 
earliest initial inspection compliance time is 11,400 total flight 
cycles or 57,300 total flight hours, whichever occurs first. The latest 
initial compliance time is 38,700 total flight cycles or 77,500 total 
flight hours, whichever occurs first. The shortest repetitive interval 
is 6,200 flight cycles or 31,200 flight hours, whichever occurs first.
    You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-
0560.

Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing 
this AD. We received no comments on the NPRM or on the determination of 
the cost to the public.

Conclusion

    We reviewed the relevant data and determined that air safety and 
the public interest require adopting this AD as proposed except for 
minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes:
     Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the 
NPRM for correcting the unsafe condition; and
     Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was 
already proposed in the NPRM.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Airbus has issued Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, dated

[[Page 43159]]

March 13, 2015. This service information describes procedures for 
repetitive rotating probe inspections for cracking of the trellis boom 
drainage holes, the holes in the stringers bottom, and the holes of the 
inner pump, and corrective actions. This service information is 
reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it 
through their normal course of business or by the means identified in 
the ADDRESSES section.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 8 airplanes of U.S. registry.
    We estimate the following costs to comply with this AD:

                                                 Estimated Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                     Cost per      Cost on U.S.
                Action                         Labor cost           Parts cost        product        operators
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspection............................  84 work-hours x $85 per           $5,890         $13,030        $104,240
                                         hour = $7,140.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We have received no definitive data that would enable us to provide 
cost estimates for the on-condition actions specified in this AD.

Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to 
issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the 
authority of the FAA Administrator. ``Subtitle VII: Aviation 
Programs,'' describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's 
authority.
    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in 
``Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General 
requirements.'' Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with 
promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing 
regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator 
finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within 
the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition 
that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this 
rulemaking action.
    This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the 
Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by 
FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance of ADs is 
normally a function of the Compliance and Airworthiness Division, but 
during this transition period, the Executive Director has delegated the 
authority to issue ADs applicable to transport category airplanes to 
the Director of the System Oversight Division.

Regulatory Findings

    We determined that this AD will not have federalism implications 
under Executive Order 13132. This AD will not have a substantial direct 
effect on the States, on the relationship between the national 
government and the States, or on the distribution of power and 
responsibilities among the various levels of government.
    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:
    1. Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 
12866;
    2. Is not a ``significant rule'' under the DOT Regulatory Policies 
and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);
    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; and
    4. Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or 
negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

Adoption of the Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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

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


Sec.  39.13   [Amended]

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

2017-18-19 Airbus: Amendment 39-19028; Docket No. FAA-2017-0560; 
Product Identifier 2016-NM-172-AD.

(a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective October 19, 2017.

(b) Affected ADs

    This AD affects AD 2011-10-06, Amendment 39-16687 (76 FR 27227, 
May 11, 2011) (``AD 2011-10-06'').

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Airbus Model A310-203, -204, -221, -222, -
304, -322, -324, and -325 airplanes, certificated in any category, 
all serial numbers.

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 57, Wings.

(e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by reports of cracking in the drainage 
holes on the lower skin panel in the center wing box between frames 
(FR) 42 and FR46. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct 
cracking of trellis boom drainage holes, the holes in the stringers 
bottom, and the holes of the inner pump, which could result in 
reduced structural integrity of the wings.

(f) Compliance

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

(g) Rotating Probe Inspections and Corrective Actions

    Except as provided by paragraph (h)(1) of this AD, before 
exceeding the applicable threshold or grace period, whichever occurs 
later, as defined in paragraph 1.E., ``Compliance,'' of Airbus 
Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, dated March 13, 2015, 
accomplish the rotating probe inspection for cracking of the trellis 
boom drainage holes, the holes in the stringers bottom, and the 
holes of the inner pump, as applicable, and do all applicable 
corrective actions, as specified in, and in accordance with the 
Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, 
Revision 04, dated March 13, 2015, except as required by paragraph 
(h)(2) of this AD. Do all applicable corrective actions before 
further flight. Repeat the inspection thereafter at intervals not to 
exceed those defined in paragraph 1.E., ``Compliance,'' of Airbus 
Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, dated March 13, 2015.

(h) Exceptions to Service Information

    (1) Where Airbus Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, 
dated March 13, 2015, specifies a grace period ``after receipt of 
the Service Bulletin without exceeding previous Service Bulletin 
revision values,'' this AD requires compliance within the specified 
grace period after the effective date of this AD.
    (2) Where Airbus Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, 
dated March 13, 2015, specifies to contact Airbus for appropriate 
action, and specifies that action as ``RC'' (Required for 
Compliance): Before further flight, accomplish corrective actions in

[[Page 43160]]

accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (l)(2) of this 
AD.

(i) No Terminating Action for Inspections

    Accomplishing corrective actions on an airplane as required by 
paragraph (g) or (h)(2) of this AD does not constitute terminating 
action for the repetitive actions required by paragraph (g) of this 
AD.

(j) Terminating Action

    Accomplishment of the initial inspection required by paragraph 
(g) of this AD constitutes terminating action for the actions 
required by paragraph (h) of AD 2011-10-06.

(k) Credit for Previous Actions

    This paragraph provides credit for actions required by paragraph 
(g) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the effective 
date of this AD using the service information specified in Airbus 
Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 03, dated December 19, 2014.

(l) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:
    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, 
International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, has the 
authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the 
procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, 
send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight 
Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information 
directly to the International Section, send it to the attention of 
the person identified in paragraph (m)(2) of this AD. Information 
may be emailed to: [email protected]. Before using any 
approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or 
lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight 
standards district office/certificate holding district office.
    (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD 
to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be 
accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International 
Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or the European Aviation 
Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus's EASA Design Organization Approval 
(DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-
authorized signature.
    (3) Required for Compliance (RC): Except as required by 
paragraph (h)(2) of this AD: If any service information contains 
procedures or tests that are identified as RC, those procedures and 
tests must be done to comply with this AD; any procedures or tests 
that are not identified as RC are recommended. Those procedures and 
tests that are not identified as RC may be deviated from using 
accepted methods in accordance with the operator's maintenance or 
inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided 
the procedures and tests identified as RC can be done and the 
airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. Any 
substitutions or changes to procedures or tests identified as RC 
require approval of an AMOC.

(m) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information 
(MCAI) EASA Airworthiness Directive 2016-0196, dated September 30, 
2016, for related information. This MCAI may be found in the AD 
docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching 
for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0560.
    (2) For more information about this AD, contact Dan Rodina, 
Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards 
Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone 
425-227-2125; fax 425-227-1149.
    (3) Service information identified in this AD that is not 
incorporated by reference is available at the addresses specified in 
paragraphs (n)(3) and (n)(4) of this AD.

(n) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the 
incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed 
in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.
    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do 
the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise.
    (i) Airbus Service Bulletin A310-57-2050, Revision 04, dated 
March 13, 2015.
    (ii) Reserved.
    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Airbus SAS, Airworthiness Office--EAW, 1 Rond Point Maurice 
Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; 
fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; 
Internet: http://www.airbus.com.
    (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport 
Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information 
on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.
    (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated 
by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration 
(NARA). For information on the availability of this material at 
NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on August 31, 2017.
Dionne Palermo,
Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-19042 Filed 9-13-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P