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PROPOSED AD PIPER AIRCRAFT, INC.: Docket No. FAA-2018-1046; Product Identifier 2018-CE-049-AD.
(a) COMMENTS DUE DATE

    We must receive comments by February 4, 2019.

(b) AFFECTED ADS

    None.

(c) APPLICABILITY

    This AD applies to Piper Aircraft, Inc. airplanes, certificated in any
    category, with a model and serial number shown in Table 1 to paragraph
    (c)  of  this AD,  and  that meet  at  least one  of  the criteria  in
    paragraphs (c)(1), (2), or (3) of this AD.

(1) Has accumulated 5,000 or more hours time-in-service (TIS);

    or

(2) Has had either  main wing spar replaced  with a serviceable main  wing
    spar (more than zero hours TIS); or

(3) Has missing and/or incomplete maintenance records.

                            ILLUSTRATION

TABLE 1 TO PARAGRAPH (c) OF THIS AD

(d) SUBJECT

    Joint Aircraft System Component (JASC)/Air Transport Association (ATA)
    of America Code 57, Wings.

(e) UNSAFE CONDITION

    This  AD was  prompted by  a report  of a  fatigue  crack  found in  a
    visually inaccessible  area of  the lower  main wing  spar cap. We are
    issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracks in the lower main
    wing spar  cap bolt  holes. The  unsafe condition,  if not  addressed,
    could result in the wing separating from the fuselage in flight.

(f) COMPLIANCE

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

(g) Review  Airplane Maintenance  Records and  Calculate Factored  Service
    Hours for Each Main Wing Spar

(1) Within 30 days after the  effective date  of this AD, review  the air-
    plane  maintenance  records  and  determine  the  number  of  100-hour
    inspections completed on the airplane since new and any record of wing
    spar replacement(s).

(i) If a main wing spar has been replaced with a new (zero hour TIS)  main
    wing spar, count the number  of 100-hour inspections from the  time of
    installation of the new main wing spar.

(ii) If either main  wing spar has been  replaced with a serviceable  main
     wing spar  (more than  zero hours  TIS) or  the airplane  maintenance
     records are missing or incomplete, the factored service hours  cannot
     be determined. Perform  the eddy current  inspection as specified  in
     paragraph (h) of this AD.

(2) Before further flight after completing the action in paragraph  (g)(1)
    of this AD,  calculate the factored  service hours for  each main wing
    spar using  the following  formula: (N  x 100)  + [T-(N  x 100)]/17  =
    Factored Service Hours, where N is the number of 100-hour  inspections
    and T is the total hours  TIS of the airplane. Thereafter, after  each
    annual  inspection  and  100-hour  TIS  inspection,  recalculate   the
    factored service  hours for  each main  wing spar  until the main wing
    spar has accumulated 5,000 or more factored service hours.

(3) An example of determining factored service hours for an airplane  with
    no  100-hour  inspections  is  as  follows:  The  airplane maintenance
    records show that the  airplane has a total  of 12,100 hours TIS,  and
    only  annual inspections  have been  done. Both  main  wing  spars are
    original factory installed. In  this case, N =  0 and T =  12,100. Use
    those values  in the  formula as  follows: (0  x 100)  + [12,100-(0  x
    100)]/17 = 711 factored service hours on each main wing spar.

(4) An example of determining factored service hours for an airplane  with
    both 100-hour and annual inspections  is as follows: The airplane  was
    originally flown for personal use,  then for training for a  period of
    time, then returned to personal use. The airplane maintenance  records
    show that the airplane  has a total of  5,600 hours TIS, and  nineteen
    100-hour inspections have been done. Both main wing spars are original
    factory installed.  In this  case, N  = 19  and T  = 5,600.  Use those
    values in the formula as follows: (19 x 100) + [5,600-(19 x 100)]/17 =
    (1,900 + 218) = 2,118 factored service hours on each main wing spar.

(h) EDDY CURRENT INSPECT

    Within the  compliance time  specified in  paragraph (h)(1)  or (2) of
    this AD, eddy current inspect the  inner surface of each bolt hole  on
    the lower  main wing  spar cap  for cracks  by using  the procedure in
    appendix 1 of this AD.

(1) Within 100 hours TIS after complying with paragraph (g) of this AD  or
    within 100 hours TIS after a main wing spar accumulates 5,000 factored
    service hours, whichever occurs later; or

(2) For airplanes with  an unknown number of  factored service hours on  a
    main wing spar, within the next 100 hours TIS after the effective date
    of this  AD or  within 60  days after  the effective  date of this AD,
    whichever occurs later.

(i) REPLACE THE MAIN WING SPAR

    If a crack is found during an inspection required in paragraph (h)  of
    this AD, before further flight, replace the main wing spar with a  new
    (zero hours TIS) main wing spar or with a main wing spar that has been
    inspected as specified  in appendix 1  of this AD  and no cracks  were
    found.

(j) REPORT INSPECTION RESULTS

    Within 30 days  after completing an  inspection required in  paragraph
    (h) of this AD, using  Appendix 2, "Inspection Results Form,"  of this
    AD,  report the  inspection  results  to the  FAA at  the Atlanta  ACO
    Branch. Submit  the report  to the  FAA using  the contact information
    found in appendix 2 of this AD.

(k) SPECIAL FLIGHT PERMIT

    A special flight permit may only be issued to operate the  airplane to
    a location where the inspection  requirement of paragraph (h) of  this
    AD can be performed. This AD prohibits a special flight permit if  the
    inspection reveals a crack in a main wing spar.

(l) PAPERWORK REDUCTION ACT BURDEN STATEMENT

    A federal  agency may  not conduct  or sponsor,  and a  person is  not
    required to respond to, nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for
    failure to  comply with  a collection  of information  subject to  the
    requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection  of
    information displays  a currently  valid OMB  Control Number.  The OMB
    Control Number  for this  information collection  is 2120-0056. Public
    reporting  for  this  collection of  information  is  estimated to  be
    approximately 1 hour  per response, including  the time for  reviewing
    instructions,   searching   existing  data   sources,   gathering  and
    maintaining the data needed,  completing and reviewing the  collection
    of information. All  responses to this  collection of information  are
    mandatory. Send comments regarding  this burden estimate or  any other
    aspect of  this collection  of information,  including suggestions for
    reducing  this burden  to: Information  Collection Clearance  Officer,
    Federal Aviation Administration,  10101 Hillwood Parkway,  Fort Worth,
    TX 76177-1524.

(m) ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF COMPLIANCE (AMOCS)

(1) The  Manager, Atlanta  ACO 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 manager  of the
    certification  office,  send  it  to  the  attention  of  the   person
    identified in paragraph (n) of this AD.

(2) 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.

(n) RELATED INFORMATION

    For more  information about  this AD,  contact Dan  McCully, Aerospace
    Engineer, Atlanta ACO Branch, FAA, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park,
    Georgia  30337; phone:  (404) 474-5548;  fax: (404)  474-5605;  email:
    william.mccully@faa.gov.

APPENDIX 1 TO THIS AD

EDDY CURRENT INSPECTION PROCEDURE 

A. EQUIPMENT

1. EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENTS

(i) Equipment used must provide impedance plane diagrams.

(ii) Probes may be either absolute or differential coil configurations.

(iii) For manual bolt hole probing:  use probe collars at an  increment of
      every 1/64 inch to ensure the  uniform depth of  rotation and to aid
      in reducing lift-off effects.

(iv) Automated scanning systems may be used.

(v) Bolt hole probes  must match as closely  as possible, but not  exceed,
    the bolt hole diameter. Split core probes may be expanded to a maximum
    of0.050 inch beyond the  probe's nominal diameter (in  accordance with
    on the probe manufacturer's instructions). The fill  factor must be 80
    percent minimum.

(vi) A  right angle  (90 degree)  surface probe  may be  used for  further
     detail indication, if needed.

2.  EQUIPMENT EXAMPLES

    The  following  optional inspection  equipment  has been  shown  to be
    adequate to conduct this procedure  and is provided as examples  only.
    Other equipment meeting the requirements in AI. may be used.

(i) Nortec 500D Series Portable Eddy Current Flaw Detector-Olympus

(ii) Bolt hole probe, 0.375 inch with 0.062 inch shielded coil-Olympus

(iii) Right angle (90 degree) surface probe with 0.062 inch shielded coil-
      Olympus

(iv) Calibration standard (NIST traceable) for bolt holes and surface: Air
     Force General Purpose Eddy Current Standard

(a) Bolt hole: 0.030 x 0.030 inch corner notch, 0.030 inch radial notch

(b) Surface: 2024-T3: 0.008, 0.020, and 0.040 inch depth EDM notches

(c) Frequency 300KHz, EDM notch set at five (5) divisions screen height

B.  REFERENCE STANDARD

(1) Use a  reference  standard of the  same conductivity  2024 T-3  within
    +/-15% lACs. It must have electrical discharge machining (EDM) notches
    for simulating defects as calibration references.

(2) The surface finish must be 63 RHR or better.

(3) The reference standard must have  a corner notch size of0.030 x  0.030
    inch (screen set at minimum  of three divisions vertical with  a phase
    signal of between  45 and 120  degrees separation from  the horizontal
    liftoff).

(4) Use a frequency between 100 and 500kHz.

(5) The calibration must be checked in the beginning and end and every  30
    minutes of inspections.

C.  PERSONNEL QUALIFICATIONS

    Personnel doing the eddy current inspection must have NAS 410 Level II
    or Level III certification.

D. MATERIAL REQUIRED

NOTE: Hardware part numbers and torque values are contained in the Aircraft
Maintenance Manual and Illustrated Parts Catalogue for the specific airplane model.

For each wing inspected:

(1) Two (2) wing to spar attach bolts

(2) Two (2) wing to spar attach nuts

(3) Two (2) wing to spar attach washers

(4) Cleaning cloth

(5) Isopropyl alcohol or mineral spirits

E.  CONDUCT INSPECTION

    For each wing to be inspected:

(1) Locate the two (2) lower outboard main spar attach bolts, as shown  in
    Figure 1 of Appendix 1, installed  on the lower cap of the  main spar,
    on the forward and aft sides of the spar web.

CAUTION: The  interior surface  of the  bolts holes  can be easily damaged
during bolt removal  and installation. Do  not drive out  spar to fuselage
attach bolts.

(2) Clean the  inspection surfaces using  a cloth dampened  with isopropyl
    alcohol or mineral spirits.

(3) Use eddy current surface and bolt hole examinations to detect  surface
    and shallow subsurface  cracking and discontinuities  on the left  and
    right lower outboard spar bolt  holes. Use SAE ARP4402, "Eddy  Current
    Inspection of Open Fastener Holes in Aluminum Aircraft Structure,"  or
    another  FAA-approved  eddy  current  inspection  method  to  do these
    inspections.

F.  ACCEPT/REJECT CRITERIA

    A crack or crack-like indication with an amplitude equal to or greater
    than 50  percent of  the reference  level signal  must be rejected and
    documented. Such an amplitude reading indicates that the spar does not
    meet type design.

                            ILLUSTRATION

FIGURE 1. MAIN SPAR ATTACH BOLT LOCATIONS (RH SIDE SHOWN)

                            ILLUSTRATION

APPENDIX 2 TO THIS AD
INSPECTION RESULTS FORM

Issued in Kansas City, Missouri,  on December 7, 2018. Melvin  J. Johnson,
Aircraft  Certification Service,  Deputy Director,  Policy and  Innovation
Division, AIR-601.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by February 4, 2019.
PREAMBLE 

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration


14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2018-1046; Product Identifier 2018-CE-049-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives;
Piper Aircraft, Inc. Airplanes

AGENCY:
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:
Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY:
We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for
certain Piper Aircraft, Inc. (Piper) Model PA-28-140, PA-28-150, PA-28-
151, PA-28-160, PA-28-161, PA-28-180, PA-28-181, PA-28-235, PA-28R-180,
PA-28R-200, PA-28R-201, PA-28R-201T, PA-28RT-201, PA-28RT-201T, PA-32-
260, and PA-32-300 airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by a report
of a fatigue crack found in a visually inaccessible area of the lower
main wing spar cap. This proposed AD would require calculating the
factored service hours for each main wing spar to determine when an
inspection is required, inspecting the lower main wing spar bolt holes
for cracks, and replacing any cracked main wing spar. We are proposing
this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES:
We must receive comments on this proposed AD by February 4, 2019.

ADDRESSES:
You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR
11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow
the instructions for submitting comments.

Fax: 202-493-2251.

Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket
Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New
Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.

Hand Delivery: Deliver to Mail address above between 9
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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-2018-1046; or in person
at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.,
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains
this NPRM, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other
information. The street address for Docket Operations (phone: 800-647-
5527) is listed above. Comments will be available in the AD docket
shortly after receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dan McCully, Aerospace Engineer,
Atlanta ACO Branch, FAA, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, Georgia
30337; phone: (404) 474-5548; fax: (404) 474-5605; email:
william.mccully@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited


We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or
arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed
under the ADDRESSES section. Include "Docket No. FAA-2018-1046;
Product Identifier 2018-CE-049-AD" at the beginning of your comments.
We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic,
environmental, and energy aspects of this NPRM. We will consider all
comments received by the closing date and may amend this NPRM because
of those comments.

We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We
will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we
receive about this NPRM.

Discussion

We received a report of a fatigue crack found in the lower main
wing spar cap on a Piper Model PA-28R-201 airplane. An investigation
revealed that repeated high-load operating conditions accelerated the
fatigue crack growth in the lower main wing spar cap. In addition,
because of the structural configuration of the wing assembly, the
cracked area was inaccessible for a visual inspection. Model PA-28-140,
PA-28-150, PA-28-151, PA-28-160, PA-28-161, PA-28-180, PA-28-181, PA-
28-235, PA-28R-180, PA-28R-200, PA-28R-201T, PA-28RT-201, PA-28RT-201T,
PA-32-260, and PA-32-300 airplanes have similar wing spar structures as
the Model PA-28R-201.

Airplanes used in training and other high-load environments are
typically operated for hire and have inspection programs that require
100-hour inspections. We determined the number of 100-hour inspections
an airplane has undergone is the best indicator of the airplane's usage
history. Using the criteria in FAA Advisory Circular AC 23-13A,
"Fatigue, Fail-Safe, and Damage Tolerance Evaluation of Metallic
Structure for Normal, Utility, Acrobatic, and Commuter Category
Airplanes," which you can find at
http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgAdvisoryCircular.nsf/
MainFrame?OpenFrameset, we developed a factored service hours formula
based on the number of 100-hour inspections completed on the airplane.
A review of the airplane maintenance records to determine the
airplane's usage and the application of the factored service hours
formula will identify when an airplane meets the criteria for the
proposed eddy current inspection of the lower main wing spar bolt
holes.

Only an airplane with a main wing spar that has a factored service
life of 5,000 hours, has had either main wing spar replaced with a
serviceable main wing spar (more than zero hours TIS), or has airplane
maintenance records that are missing or incomplete, must have the eddy
current inspection.

This condition, if not addressed, could result in the wing
separating from the fuselage in flight.

Related Service Information


We reviewed Piper Aircraft Corporation Service Bulletin No. 886,
dated June 8, 1988, and The New Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin
No. 978A, dated August 6, 1999. These service bulletins contain
procedures for determining initial and repetitive inspection times
based on the aircraft's usage and visually inspecting the wing lower
spar caps and the upper wing skin adjacent to the fuselage and forward
of each main spar for cracks. We also reviewed Piper Aircraft
Corporation Service Letter No. 997, dated May 14, 1987. This service
letter contains procedures for replacing airplane wings.

FAA's Determination


We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant
information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is
likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type design.

Proposed AD Requirements


This proposed AD would require reviewing the airplane maintenance
records to determine the number of 100-hour inspections completed on
each installed main wing spar and using the number of 100-hour
inspections to calculate the factored service hours for each main wing
spar. This proposed AD would also require inspecting the lower main
wing spar bolt holes for cracks once a main wing spar exceeds the
specified factored service hours and replacing any main wing spar when
a crack is indicated. This proposed AD would only apply when an
airplane has either accumulated 5,000 or more hours time-in-service
(TIS); has had either main wing spar replaced with a serviceable main
wing spar (more than zero hours TIS); or has missing and/or incomplete
maintenance records.

Interim Action


We consider this proposed AD interim action. The inspection reports
will provide us additional data for determining the cause of the
cracking. After analyzing the data, we may take further rulemaking action.

Costs of Compliance


We estimate that this proposed AD affects 19,696 airplanes of U.S. registry.

We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD:

Estimated Costs

ACTION
LABOR COST
PARTS COST
COST PER
PRODUCT
COST ON U.S.
OPERATORS
Review airplane maintenance records and calculate factored service hours.
2 work-hours x $85 per hour = $170.
Not applicable
$170
$3,348,320

We estimate the following costs to do the eddy current inspection.
Because some airplanes are only used non-commercially and will not
accumulate the specified factored service hours in the life of the
airplane, we have no way of determining the number of airplanes that
might need this inspection:

On-Condition Costs

ACTION
LABOR COST
PARTS COST
COST PER PRODUCT
Inspect the lower main wing spar and replace the attach nuts and bolts.
1.5 work-hours x $85 per hour = $127.50 per wing spar.
$20
$147.50 per wing spar.
Report inspection results to the FAA.
1 work-hour x $85 = $85.
N/A
$85.

We estimate the following costs to do any necessary replacements
that would be required based on the results of the proposed inspection.
We have no way of determining the number of aircraft that might need
this replacement:

On-Condition Replacement Costs

ACTION
LABOR COST
PARTS COST
COST PER PRODUCT
Replace main wing spar.
32 work-hours x $85 per hour = $2,720 per wing spar.
$5,540
$8,260 per wing spar.

Paperwork Reduction Act

A federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not
required to respond to, nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for
failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the
requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of
information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. The OMB
Control Number for this information collection is 2120-0056. Public
reporting for this collection of information is estimated to be
approximately 1 hour per response, including the time for reviewing
instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and
maintaining the data needed, completing and reviewing the collection of
information. All responses to this collection of information are
mandatory. Send comments regarding this burden estimate or any other
aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for
reducing this burden to: Information Collection Clearance Officer,
Federal Aviation Administration, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX
76177-1524.

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 small airplanes, gliders,
balloons, airships, domestic business jet transport airplanes, and
associated appliances to the Director of the Policy and Innovation
Division.

Regulatory Findings


We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism
implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would 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 this proposed regulation:

(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.

The Proposed Amendment


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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES


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]


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