Special Conditions: Haeco Cabin Solutions, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Model 737-800 Airplane; Structure-Mounted Airbags, 14387-14389 [2021-05331]

Download as PDF 14387 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 86, No. 49 Tuesday, March 16, 2021 This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 25 [Docket No. FAA–2021–0228; Notice No. 25– 21–01–SC] Special Conditions: Haeco Cabin Solutions, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Model 737–800 Airplane; Structure-Mounted Airbags Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed special conditions. AGENCY: This action proposes special conditions for the Boeing Commercial Airplanes (Boeing) Model 737–800 airplane. This airplane, as modified by Haeco Cabin Solutions (Haeco), will have a novel or unusual design feature when compared to the state of technology envisioned in the airworthiness standards for transport category airplanes. This design feature is structure-mounted airbags designed to protect each occupant from serious head injury in the event of an emergency landing. The applicable airworthiness regulations do not contain adequate or appropriate safety standards for this design feature. These proposed special conditions contain the additional safety standards that the Administrator considers necessary to establish a level of safety equivalent to that established by the existing airworthiness standards. DATES: Send comments on or before April 15, 2021. ADDRESSES: Send comments identified by Docket No. FAA–2021–0228 using any of the following methods: • Federal eRegulations 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 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:16 Mar 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 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: Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as described in the following paragraph, and other information as described in 14 CFR 11.35, the FAA will post all comments received without change, to http:// www.regulations.gov/, including any personal information you provide. The FAA will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact received about this proposal. Confidential Business Information: Confidential Business Information (CBI) is commercial or financial information that is both customarily and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from public disclosure. If your comments responsive to this Notice contain commercial or financial information that is customarily treated as private, that you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or responsive to this Notice, it is important that you clearly designate the submitted comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission containing CBI as ‘‘PROPIN.’’ The FAA will treat such marked submissions as confidential under the FOIA, and the indicated comments will not be placed in the public docket of this Notice. Send submissions containing CBI to John Shelden, Human Machine Interface, AIR–626, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service, Federal Aviation Administration, 2200 South 216th Street, Des Moines, Washington 98198; telephone and fax 206–231– 3214; email John.Shelden@faa.gov. Comments the FAA receives, which are not specifically designated as CBI, will be placed in the public docket for this rulemaking. 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 go to Docket PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 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: John Shelden, Human Machine Interface, AIR–626, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service, Federal Aviation Administration, 2200 South 216th Street, Des Moines, Washington 98198; telephone and fax 206–231– 3214; email John.Shelden@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The substance of these special conditions has been subject to the notice and public comment procedure in several prior instances. Additionally, a delay in design approval would significantly affect the applicant’s installation of the system on the airplane. Therefore, the FAA is shortening the public comment period to 30 days. Comments Invited The FAA invites interested people to take part in this rulemaking by sending written comments, data, or views. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion of the special conditions, explain the reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA will consider all comments received by the closing date for comments. The FAA may change these special conditions based on the comments received. Background On September 1, 2020, Haeco applied for a supplemental type certificate for structure-mounted airbags in the Boeing Model 737–800 airplane. The Boeing Model 737–800 airplane, which is a derivative of the Boeing Model 737 airplane currently approved under Type Certificate No. A16WE, is a twin-engine, transport-category airplane with seating for 189 passengers and a maximum takeoff weight of 174,200 pounds. Type Certification Basis Under the provisions of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) 21.101, Haeco must show that the Boeing Model 737–800 airplane, as changed, continues to meet the applicable provisions of the regulations listed in Type Certificate No. A16WE or the applicable regulations in effect on the date of application for the E:\FR\FM\16MRP1.SGM 16MRP1 14388 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 49 / Tuesday, March 16, 2021 / Proposed Rules change, except for earlier amendments as agreed upon by the FAA. If the Administrator finds that the applicable airworthiness regulations (e.g., 14 CFR part 25) do not contain adequate or appropriate safety standards for the Boeing Model 737–800 airplane because of a novel or unusual design feature, special conditions are prescribed under the provisions of § 21.16. Special conditions are initially applicable to the model for which they are issued. Should the applicant apply for a supplemental type certificate to modify any other model included on the same type certificate to incorporate the same novel or unusual design feature, these special conditions would also apply to the other model under § 21.101. In addition to the applicable airworthiness regulations and special conditions, the Boeing Model 737–800 airplane must comply with the fuel vent and exhaust emission requirements of 14 CFR part 34, and the noise certification requirements of 14 CFR part 36. The FAA issues special conditions, as defined in 14 CFR 11.19, in accordance with § 11.38, and they become part of the type certification basis under § 21.101. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS Novel or Unusual Design Features The Boeing Model 737–800 airplane will incorporate the following novel or unusual design features: Airbags mounted to structure to prevent head injury. Discussion Haeco proposes to install structuremounted airbags instead of inflatable lap belts as a means to protect each occupant from serious injury in the event of an emergency landing, as required by § 25.562(c)(5), on 737–800 airplanes. Such use of airbags to provide injury protection for the occupant is a novel or unusual feature for this airplane model, and the applicable airworthiness regulations do not contain adequate or appropriate airworthiness standards for these design features. Therefore, special conditions are needed to address requirements particular to installation of airbags in this manner. Special conditions exist for airbags installed on seat belts, known as inflatable lap belts, which have been installed on transport airplane passenger seats. Structure-mounted airbags, although a novel design, were first introduced on Jetstream Aircraft Limited Model 4100 series airplanes, which resulted in issuance of Special Conditions 25–ANM–127 on May 14, VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:16 Mar 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 1997. These special conditions supplemented 14 CFR part 25 and, more specifically, §§ 25.562 and 25.785. The structure-mounted airbag, similar to the inflatable lap belt, is designed to limit occupant forward excursion in the event of an emergency landing. These airbags will reduce the potential for serious injury, including reducing the head-injury criterion measurement defined in part 25. However, structuremounted airbags function similarly as automotive airbags, where the airbag deploys from furniture located in front of the passenger, relative to the airplane’s direction of flight, forming a barrier between the structure and occupant. Also, unlike the inflatable lap belt, the structure-mounted airbag does not move with the occupant. To account for out-of-position and brace-position occupants, the airbag is designed to conform to the curvature of the exposed structure in the head-strike zone. Because the airbag system is essentially a single-use device, it could deploy under crash conditions that are not sufficiently so severe as to require the injury protection the airbag system provides. Because an actual crash is frequently composed of a series of impacts before the airplane comes to rest, a larger impact following the initial impact could render the airbag system unavailable. This potential situation does not exist with standard upper-torso restraints, which tend to provide continuous protection regardless of impact severity, or number of impacts, in a crash event. Therefore, the airbag system installation should be such that it provides protection, when it is required, by not expending its protection when it is not required. If the airbag deployment threshold is unnecessarily low, the airbag would need to continue to provide protection when an impact requiring protection occurs. These proposed special conditions are based upon Special Conditions 25–605– SC for the Boeing Model 787–9 airplanes equipped with B/E Aerospace Super-Diamond model business-class passenger seats and associated furniture. Additionally, the special conditions address protection of the occupant’s neck and spine for the structuremounted airbag deployment. When using the HIC15 head-injury method for airbag impacts (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 571.208) the neck and spine limits are included as part of the allowance. These additional conditions are based on special conditions issued previously on oblique seats. The proposed special conditions contain the additional safety standards that the Administrator considers necessary to PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 establish a level of safety equivalent to that established by the existing airworthiness standards. Applicability As discussed above, these special conditions are applicable to the Boeing Model 737–800 airplane as modified by Haeco. Should Haeco apply at a later date for a supplemental type certificate to modify any other model included on Type Certificate No. A16WE to incorporate the same novel or unusual design feature, these special conditions would apply to that model as well. Conclusion This action affects only a certain novel or unusual design features on one model of airplane. It is not a rule of general applicability and affects only the applicant who applied to the FAA for approval of these features on the airplane. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 25 Aircraft, Aviation safety, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. Authority Citation The authority citation for these special conditions is as follows: Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g), 40113, 44701, 44702, 44704. The Proposed Special Conditions Accordingly, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) proposes the following special conditions as part of the type certification basis for Boeing Model 737–800 airplanes, as modified by Haeco Cabin Solutions: 1. The applicant must demonstrate by test that the structure-mounted airbag will deploy and provide protection under crash conditions where it is necessary to prevent serious injury to a 50th percentile occupant, as specified in § 25.562. The means of protection must provide a consistent approach to energy absorption for a range of occupants, from a two-year-old child to a 95th percentile male. In addition, the following situations should be considered: • The seat occupant is holding an infant. • The seat occupant is a child in a child restraint device. • The seat occupant is a child not using a child restraint device. • The seat occupant is a pregnant woman. a. Head-Injury Criteria Compliance with § 25.562(c)(5) is required, except that, if the ATD has no apparent contact with the seat/structure but has contact with an airbag, a head- E:\FR\FM\16MRP1.SGM 16MRP1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 49 / Tuesday, March 16, 2021 / Proposed Rules injury criterion (HIC) unlimited score in excess of 1000 is acceptable, provided the HIC15 score (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 571.208) for that contact is less than 700. b. Body-to-Wall/Furnishing Contact If a seat is installed aft of structure (e.g., an interior wall or furnishing) that does not provide a homogenous contact surface for the expected range of occupants and yaw angles, then additional analysis or tests may be required to demonstrate that the injury criteria are met for the area that an occupant could contact. For example, if different yaw angles could result in different airbag performance, then additional analysis or separate tests may be necessary to evaluate performance. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS c. Neck-Injury Criteria The seating system must protect the occupant from experiencing serious neck injury. The assessment of neck injury must be conducted with the airbag device activated, unless there is reason to also consider that the neckinjury potential would be higher for impacts below the airbag-device deployment threshold. (1) The Nij (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 571.208) must be below 1.0, where Nij = Fz/Fzc + My/Myc, and Nij critical values are: (a) Fzc = 1,530 lb for tension (b) Fzc = 1,385 lb for compression (c) Myc = 229 lb-ft in flexion (d) Myc = 100 lb-ft in extension (2) In addition, peak Fz must be below 937 lb in tension and 899 lb in compression. (3) Rotation of the head about its vertical axis, relative to the torso, is limited to 105 degrees in either direction from forward-facing. (4) The neck must not impact any surface that would produce concentrated loading on the neck. d. ATD and Test Conditions Longitudinal tests conducted to measure the injury criteria above must be performed with the FAA Hybrid III ATD, as described in SAE 1999–01– 1609, ‘‘A Lumbar Spine Modification to the Hybrid III ATD for Aircraft Seat Tests.’’ The tests must be conducted with an undeformed floor, at the mostcritical yaw cases for injury, and with all lateral structural supports (e.g. armrests or walls) installed. Note: Applicant must demonstrate that the installation of seats via plinths or pallets meets all applicable requirements. Compliance with the guidance contained in policy memorandum PS–ANM–100–2000– 00123, ‘‘Guidance for Demonstrating VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:16 Mar 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 Compliance with Seat Dynamic Testing for Plinths and Pallets,’’ dated February 2, 2000, is acceptable to the FAA. 2. The structure-mounted airbag must provide adequate protection for each occupant regardless of the number of occupants of the seat assembly. 3. The structure-mounted airbag system must not be susceptible to inadvertent deployment as a result of wear and tear, or inertial loads resulting from in-flight or ground maneuvers (including gusts and hard landings) likely to be experienced in service. 4. The applicant must demonstrate that an inadvertent deployment that could cause injury to a standing or sitting person is improbable. Inadvertent deployment must not cause injury to anyone who may be positioned close to the structure-mounted airbag (e.g., seated in an adjacent seat, or standing adjacent to the airbag installation or the subject seat). Cases where a structuremounted airbag is inadvertently deployed near a seated occupant or an empty seat must be considered. 5. Inadvertent deployment of the structure-mounted airbag during the most critical part of flight will either not cause a hazard to the airplane or is extremely improbable. 6. Deployment of the structuremounted airbag must not introduce hazards or injury mechanisms to the seated occupant, including occupants in the brace position. Deployment of the structure-mounted airbag must also not result in injuries that could impede rapid exit from the airplane. 7. Effects of the deflection and deformation of the structure to which the airbag is attached must be taken into account when evaluating deployment and location of the inflated airbag. The effect of loads imposed by airbag deployment, or stowed components where applicable, must also be taken into account. 8. The applicant must demonstrate that the structure-mounted airbag, when deployed, does not impair access to the seatbelt- or harness-release means, and must not hinder evacuation. This will include consideration of adjacent seat places and the aisle. 9. The airbag, once deployed, must not adversely affect the emergencylighting system, and must not block escape-path lighting to the extent that the light(s) no longer meet their intended function. 10. The structure-mounted airbag must not impede occupants’ rapid exit from the airplane 10 seconds after its deployment. 11. Where structure-mounted airbag systems are installed in or close to passenger evacuation routes (other than PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 14389 for the passenger seat for which the airbag is installed), possibility of impact on emergency evacuation (e.g., hanging in the aisle, potential trip hazard, etc.) must be evaluated. 12. The airbag electronic system must be designed to be protected from lightning per § 25.1316(b), and highintensity radiated fields per § 25.1317(c). 13. The structure-mounted airbag system must not contain or release hazardous quantities of gas or particulate matter into the cabin. 14. The structure-mounted airbag installation must be protected from the effects of fire such that no hazard to occupants will result. 15. The inflatable bag material must meet the 2.5-inches-per-minute horizontal flammability test defined in 14 CFR part 25, appendix F, part I, paragraph (a)(1)(iv). 16. The design of the structuremounted airbag system must protect the mechanisms and controls from external contamination associated with that which could occur on or around passenger seating. 17. The structure-mounted airbag system must have a means to verify the integrity of the structure-mounted airbag activation system. 18. The applicant must provide installation limitations to ensure installation compatibility between the seat design and opposing monument or structure. Issued in Kansas City, MO, on March 10, 2021. Patrick R. Mullen, Manager, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2021–05331 Filed 3–15–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 [Docket Number USCG–2021–0115] RIN 1625–AA87 Security Zone; North Atlantic Ocean, Approaches to Ocean City, MD Coast Guard, DHS. Notice of proposed rulemaking. AGENCY: ACTION: The Coast Guard is proposing to establish a temporary security zone encompassing certain waters of the North Atlantic Ocean. The security zone is necessary to prevent waterside threats SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\16MRP1.SGM 16MRP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 49 (Tuesday, March 16, 2021)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 14387-14389]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-05331]


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

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

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


Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 49 / Tuesday, March 16, 2021 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 14387]]



DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 25

[Docket No. FAA-2021-0228; Notice No. 25-21-01-SC]


Special Conditions: Haeco Cabin Solutions, Boeing Commercial 
Airplanes Model 737-800 Airplane; Structure-Mounted Airbags

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed special conditions.

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

SUMMARY: This action proposes special conditions for the Boeing 
Commercial Airplanes (Boeing) Model 737-800 airplane. This airplane, as 
modified by Haeco Cabin Solutions (Haeco), will have a novel or unusual 
design feature when compared to the state of technology envisioned in 
the airworthiness standards for transport category airplanes. This 
design feature is structure-mounted airbags designed to protect each 
occupant from serious head injury in the event of an emergency landing. 
The applicable airworthiness regulations do not contain adequate or 
appropriate safety standards for this design feature. These proposed 
special conditions contain the additional safety standards that the 
Administrator considers necessary to establish a level of safety 
equivalent to that established by the existing airworthiness standards.

DATES: Send comments on or before April 15, 2021.

ADDRESSES: Send comments identified by Docket No. FAA-2021-0228 using 
any of the following methods:
     Federal eRegulations 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: Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as 
described in the following paragraph, and other information as 
described in 14 CFR 11.35, the FAA will post all comments received 
without change, to http://www.regulations.gov/, including any personal 
information you provide. The FAA will also post a report summarizing 
each substantive verbal contact received about this proposal.
    Confidential Business Information: Confidential Business 
Information (CBI) is commercial or financial information that is both 
customarily and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the 
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from 
public disclosure. If your comments responsive to this Notice contain 
commercial or financial information that is customarily treated as 
private, that you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or 
responsive to this Notice, it is important that you clearly designate 
the submitted comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission 
containing CBI as ``PROPIN.'' The FAA will treat such marked 
submissions as confidential under the FOIA, and the indicated comments 
will not be placed in the public docket of this Notice. Send 
submissions containing CBI to John Shelden, Human Machine Interface, 
AIR-626, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation 
Division, Aircraft Certification Service, Federal Aviation 
Administration, 2200 South 216th Street, Des Moines, Washington 98198; 
telephone and fax 206-231-3214; email [email protected]. Comments 
the FAA receives, which are not specifically designated as CBI, will be 
placed in the public docket for this rulemaking.
    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 go 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.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Shelden, Human Machine Interface, 
AIR-626, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation 
Division, Aircraft Certification Service, Federal Aviation 
Administration, 2200 South 216th Street, Des Moines, Washington 98198; 
telephone and fax 206-231-3214; email [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The substance of these special conditions 
has been subject to the notice and public comment procedure in several 
prior instances. Additionally, a delay in design approval would 
significantly affect the applicant's installation of the system on the 
airplane. Therefore, the FAA is shortening the public comment period to 
30 days.

Comments Invited

    The FAA invites interested people to take part in this rulemaking 
by sending written comments, data, or views. The most helpful comments 
reference a specific portion of the special conditions, explain the 
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data.
    The FAA will consider all comments received by the closing date for 
comments. The FAA may change these special conditions based on the 
comments received.

Background

    On September 1, 2020, Haeco applied for a supplemental type 
certificate for structure-mounted airbags in the Boeing Model 737-800 
airplane. The Boeing Model 737-800 airplane, which is a derivative of 
the Boeing Model 737 airplane currently approved under Type Certificate 
No. A16WE, is a twin-engine, transport-category airplane with seating 
for 189 passengers and a maximum takeoff weight of 174,200 pounds.

Type Certification Basis

    Under the provisions of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 
CFR) 21.101, Haeco must show that the Boeing Model 737-800 airplane, as 
changed, continues to meet the applicable provisions of the regulations 
listed in Type Certificate No. A16WE or the applicable regulations in 
effect on the date of application for the

[[Page 14388]]

change, except for earlier amendments as agreed upon by the FAA.
    If the Administrator finds that the applicable airworthiness 
regulations (e.g., 14 CFR part 25) do not contain adequate or 
appropriate safety standards for the Boeing Model 737-800 airplane 
because of a novel or unusual design feature, special conditions are 
prescribed under the provisions of Sec.  21.16.
    Special conditions are initially applicable to the model for which 
they are issued. Should the applicant apply for a supplemental type 
certificate to modify any other model included on the same type 
certificate to incorporate the same novel or unusual design feature, 
these special conditions would also apply to the other model under 
Sec.  21.101.
    In addition to the applicable airworthiness regulations and special 
conditions, the Boeing Model 737-800 airplane must comply with the fuel 
vent and exhaust emission requirements of 14 CFR part 34, and the noise 
certification requirements of 14 CFR part 36.
    The FAA issues special conditions, as defined in 14 CFR 11.19, in 
accordance with Sec.  11.38, and they become part of the type 
certification basis under Sec.  21.101.

Novel or Unusual Design Features

    The Boeing Model 737-800 airplane will incorporate the following 
novel or unusual design features:
    Airbags mounted to structure to prevent head injury.

Discussion

    Haeco proposes to install structure-mounted airbags instead of 
inflatable lap belts as a means to protect each occupant from serious 
injury in the event of an emergency landing, as required by Sec.  
25.562(c)(5), on 737-800 airplanes.
    Such use of airbags to provide injury protection for the occupant 
is a novel or unusual feature for this airplane model, and the 
applicable airworthiness regulations do not contain adequate or 
appropriate airworthiness standards for these design features. 
Therefore, special conditions are needed to address requirements 
particular to installation of airbags in this manner.
    Special conditions exist for airbags installed on seat belts, known 
as inflatable lap belts, which have been installed on transport 
airplane passenger seats. Structure-mounted airbags, although a novel 
design, were first introduced on Jetstream Aircraft Limited Model 4100 
series airplanes, which resulted in issuance of Special Conditions 25-
ANM-127 on May 14, 1997. These special conditions supplemented 14 CFR 
part 25 and, more specifically, Sec. Sec.  25.562 and 25.785.
    The structure-mounted airbag, similar to the inflatable lap belt, 
is designed to limit occupant forward excursion in the event of an 
emergency landing. These airbags will reduce the potential for serious 
injury, including reducing the head-injury criterion measurement 
defined in part 25. However, structure-mounted airbags function 
similarly as automotive airbags, where the airbag deploys from 
furniture located in front of the passenger, relative to the airplane's 
direction of flight, forming a barrier between the structure and 
occupant. Also, unlike the inflatable lap belt, the structure-mounted 
airbag does not move with the occupant. To account for out-of-position 
and brace-position occupants, the airbag is designed to conform to the 
curvature of the exposed structure in the head-strike zone.
    Because the airbag system is essentially a single-use device, it 
could deploy under crash conditions that are not sufficiently so severe 
as to require the injury protection the airbag system provides. Because 
an actual crash is frequently composed of a series of impacts before 
the airplane comes to rest, a larger impact following the initial 
impact could render the airbag system unavailable. This potential 
situation does not exist with standard upper-torso restraints, which 
tend to provide continuous protection regardless of impact severity, or 
number of impacts, in a crash event. Therefore, the airbag system 
installation should be such that it provides protection, when it is 
required, by not expending its protection when it is not required. If 
the airbag deployment threshold is unnecessarily low, the airbag would 
need to continue to provide protection when an impact requiring 
protection occurs.
    These proposed special conditions are based upon Special Conditions 
25-605-SC for the Boeing Model 787-9 airplanes equipped with B/E 
Aerospace Super-Diamond model business-class passenger seats and 
associated furniture. Additionally, the special conditions address 
protection of the occupant's neck and spine for the structure-mounted 
airbag deployment. When using the HIC15 head-injury method for airbag 
impacts (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 571.208) the neck and 
spine limits are included as part of the allowance. These additional 
conditions are based on special conditions issued previously on oblique 
seats. The proposed special conditions contain the additional safety 
standards that the Administrator considers necessary to establish a 
level of safety equivalent to that established by the existing 
airworthiness standards.

Applicability

    As discussed above, these special conditions are applicable to the 
Boeing Model 737-800 airplane as modified by Haeco. Should Haeco apply 
at a later date for a supplemental type certificate to modify any other 
model included on Type Certificate No. A16WE to incorporate the same 
novel or unusual design feature, these special conditions would apply 
to that model as well.

Conclusion

    This action affects only a certain novel or unusual design features 
on one model of airplane. It is not a rule of general applicability and 
affects only the applicant who applied to the FAA for approval of these 
features on the airplane.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 25

    Aircraft, Aviation safety, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

Authority Citation

    The authority citation for these special conditions is as follows:

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

The Proposed Special Conditions

    Accordingly, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) proposes the 
following special conditions as part of the type certification basis 
for Boeing Model 737-800 airplanes, as modified by Haeco Cabin 
Solutions:
    1. The applicant must demonstrate by test that the structure-
mounted airbag will deploy and provide protection under crash 
conditions where it is necessary to prevent serious injury to a 50th 
percentile occupant, as specified in Sec.  25.562. The means of 
protection must provide a consistent approach to energy absorption for 
a range of occupants, from a two-year-old child to a 95th percentile 
male. In addition, the following situations should be considered:
     The seat occupant is holding an infant.
     The seat occupant is a child in a child restraint device.
     The seat occupant is a child not using a child restraint 
device.
     The seat occupant is a pregnant woman.

a. Head-Injury Criteria

    Compliance with Sec.  25.562(c)(5) is required, except that, if the 
ATD has no apparent contact with the seat/structure but has contact 
with an airbag, a head-

[[Page 14389]]

injury criterion (HIC) unlimited score in excess of 1000 is acceptable, 
provided the HIC15 score (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 571.208) 
for that contact is less than 700.

b. Body-to-Wall/Furnishing Contact

    If a seat is installed aft of structure (e.g., an interior wall or 
furnishing) that does not provide a homogenous contact surface for the 
expected range of occupants and yaw angles, then additional analysis or 
tests may be required to demonstrate that the injury criteria are met 
for the area that an occupant could contact. For example, if different 
yaw angles could result in different airbag performance, then 
additional analysis or separate tests may be necessary to evaluate 
performance.

c. Neck-Injury Criteria

    The seating system must protect the occupant from experiencing 
serious neck injury. The assessment of neck injury must be conducted 
with the airbag device activated, unless there is reason to also 
consider that the neck-injury potential would be higher for impacts 
below the airbag-device deployment threshold.
    (1) The Nij (calculated in accordance with 49 CFR 
571.208) must be below 1.0, where Nij = Fz/
Fzc + My/Myc, and Nij 
critical values are:

(a) Fzc = 1,530 lb for tension
(b) Fzc = 1,385 lb for compression
(c) Myc = 229 lb-ft in flexion
(d) Myc = 100 lb-ft in extension

    (2) In addition, peak Fz must be below 937 lb in tension 
and 899 lb in compression.
    (3) Rotation of the head about its vertical axis, relative to the 
torso, is limited to 105 degrees in either direction from forward-
facing.
    (4) The neck must not impact any surface that would produce 
concentrated loading on the neck.

d. ATD and Test Conditions

    Longitudinal tests conducted to measure the injury criteria above 
must be performed with the FAA Hybrid III ATD, as described in SAE 
1999-01-1609, ``A Lumbar Spine Modification to the Hybrid III ATD for 
Aircraft Seat Tests.'' The tests must be conducted with an undeformed 
floor, at the most-critical yaw cases for injury, and with all lateral 
structural supports (e.g. armrests or walls) installed.
    Note: Applicant must demonstrate that the installation of seats via 
plinths or pallets meets all applicable requirements. Compliance with 
the guidance contained in policy memorandum PS-ANM-100-2000-00123, 
``Guidance for Demonstrating Compliance with Seat Dynamic Testing for 
Plinths and Pallets,'' dated February 2, 2000, is acceptable to the 
FAA.
    2. The structure-mounted airbag must provide adequate protection 
for each occupant regardless of the number of occupants of the seat 
assembly.
    3. The structure-mounted airbag system must not be susceptible to 
inadvertent deployment as a result of wear and tear, or inertial loads 
resulting from in-flight or ground maneuvers (including gusts and hard 
landings) likely to be experienced in service.
    4. The applicant must demonstrate that an inadvertent deployment 
that could cause injury to a standing or sitting person is improbable. 
Inadvertent deployment must not cause injury to anyone who may be 
positioned close to the structure-mounted airbag (e.g., seated in an 
adjacent seat, or standing adjacent to the airbag installation or the 
subject seat). Cases where a structure-mounted airbag is inadvertently 
deployed near a seated occupant or an empty seat must be considered.
    5. Inadvertent deployment of the structure-mounted airbag during 
the most critical part of flight will either not cause a hazard to the 
airplane or is extremely improbable.
    6. Deployment of the structure-mounted airbag must not introduce 
hazards or injury mechanisms to the seated occupant, including 
occupants in the brace position. Deployment of the structure-mounted 
airbag must also not result in injuries that could impede rapid exit 
from the airplane.
    7. Effects of the deflection and deformation of the structure to 
which the airbag is attached must be taken into account when evaluating 
deployment and location of the inflated airbag. The effect of loads 
imposed by airbag deployment, or stowed components where applicable, 
must also be taken into account.
    8. The applicant must demonstrate that the structure-mounted 
airbag, when deployed, does not impair access to the seatbelt- or 
harness-release means, and must not hinder evacuation. This will 
include consideration of adjacent seat places and the aisle.
    9. The airbag, once deployed, must not adversely affect the 
emergency-lighting system, and must not block escape-path lighting to 
the extent that the light(s) no longer meet their intended function.
    10. The structure-mounted airbag must not impede occupants' rapid 
exit from the airplane 10 seconds after its deployment.
    11. Where structure-mounted airbag systems are installed in or 
close to passenger evacuation routes (other than for the passenger seat 
for which the airbag is installed), possibility of impact on emergency 
evacuation (e.g., hanging in the aisle, potential trip hazard, etc.) 
must be evaluated.
    12. The airbag electronic system must be designed to be protected 
from lightning per Sec.  25.1316(b), and high-intensity radiated fields 
per Sec.  25.1317(c).
    13. The structure-mounted airbag system must not contain or release 
hazardous quantities of gas or particulate matter into the cabin.
    14. The structure-mounted airbag installation must be protected 
from the effects of fire such that no hazard to occupants will result.
    15. The inflatable bag material must meet the 2.5-inches-per-minute 
horizontal flammability test defined in 14 CFR part 25, appendix F, 
part I, paragraph (a)(1)(iv).
    16. The design of the structure-mounted airbag system must protect 
the mechanisms and controls from external contamination associated with 
that which could occur on or around passenger seating.
    17. The structure-mounted airbag system must have a means to verify 
the integrity of the structure-mounted airbag activation system.
    18. The applicant must provide installation limitations to ensure 
installation compatibility between the seat design and opposing 
monument or structure.

    Issued in Kansas City, MO, on March 10, 2021.
Patrick R. Mullen,
Manager, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, Policy and Innovation 
Division, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-05331 Filed 3-15-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P