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2021-19-03 LEONARDO S.P.A.: Amendment 39-21721; Docket No. FAA-2021-0505; Project Identifier 2018-SW-004-AD.
(a) EFFECTIVE DATE

    This airworthiness directive (AD) is effective November 1, 2021.

(b) AFFECTED ADS

    None.

(c) APPLICABILITY

    This AD applies to Leonardo S.p.a. Model AB139 and AW139  helicopters,
    certificated in any category, identified in paragraphs (c)(1) and  (2)
    of this AD,  equipped with "Primus  Epic" system software  release 7.4
    (Phase 7 V1), 7.7 (Phase 7 V3) or 7.10 (Phase 7 V4).

(1) Model AB139 and AW19 helicopters  having  serial  number  (S/N) 31005,
    31006, and S/Ns 31008 through 31157 inclusive;  and S/Ns 41001 through
    41023 inclusive.

(2) Model AW139 helicopters having S/N 31201 and subsequent, and S/N 41201
    and subsequent.

(d) SUBJECT

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 2200, Auto Flight System

(e) UNSAFE CONDITION

    This AD was prompted  by reports of spurious  in-flight disconnections
    of the automatic flight control system (AFCS). The FAA is issuing this
    AD to address spurious degradation or unavailability of the full AFCS.
    The  unsafe condition,  if not  addressed, could  result in  temporary
    impairment of the automated flight  aid for control of the  helicopter
    and increase the flightcrew’s workload.

(f) COMPLIANCE

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

(g) REQUIREMENTS

    Except  as specified  in paragraph  (h) of  this AD:  Comply with  all
    required actions and compliance times specified in, and in  accordance
    with, European  Aviation Safety  Agency (now  European Union  Aviation
    Safety Agency)  (EASA) AD  2018-0002, dated  January 4,  2018 (EASA AD
    2018-0002).

(h) EXCEPTIONS TO EASA AD 2018-0002

(1) Where EASA AD 2018-0002 refers to flight hours (FH),  this AD requires
    using hours time-in-service.

(2) Where EASA AD 2018-0002 refers to its effective date, this AD requires
    using the effective date of this AD.

(3) The "Remarks" section of EASA AD 2018-0002 does not apply to this AD.

(4) Where the service information  referenced  in EASA AD 2018-0002 speci-
    fies to download an option file from a certain website, that method of
    installation is not required by this AD.

(i) NO REPORTING REQUIREMENT

    Although the service information referenced in EASA AD 2018-0002 spec-
    ifies to submit certain information to the manufacturer, this AD  does
    not include that requirement.

(j) ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF COMPLIANCE (AMOCS)

(1) The Manager, International Validation 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
    International  Validation  Branch, send  it  to the  attention  of the
    person identified  in paragraph  (k) of  this AD.  Information may  be
    emailed to: 9-AVS-AIR-730-AMOC@faa.gov.

(2) Before using any approved AMOC,  notify your appropriate principal in-
    spector, or lacking  a principal inspector,  the manager of  the local
    flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

(k) RELATED INFORMATION

    For more information about this AD, contact Hal Jensen, Aerospace Eng-
    ineer, Operational Safety Branch, Compliance & Airworthiness Division,
    FAA, 950 L'Enfant Plaza N SW, Washington, DC 20024; telephone 202-267-
    9167; email hal.jensen@faa.gov.

(l) 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) European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2018-0002,  dated January 4,
    2018.

(ii) [Reserved]

(3) For EASA AD 2018-0002, contact the EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668
    Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu
    Internet www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this EASA AD on the EASA web
    site at https://ad.easa.europa.eu.

(4) You may view this material at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel,
    Southwest Region, 10101  Hillwood Pkwy., Room  6N-321, Fort Worth,  TX
    76177. For  information on  the availability  of this  material at the
    FAA, call 817-222-5110. This material may be found in the AD docket on
    the  Internet  at  https://www.regulations.gov  by  searching  for and
    locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0505.

(5) You may view this material that is incorporated  by reference  at  the
    National Archives and  Records Administration (NARA).  For information
    on the availability of this material at NARA, email fr.inspection@nara
    .gov,  or   go  to   https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr
    -locations.html.

Issued on August 30, 2021. Lance T. Gant, Director, Compliance & Airworth-
iness Division, Aircraft Certification Service.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  Hal Jensen,  Aerospace Engineer,  Opera-
tional  Safety  Branch,  Compliance  &  Airworthiness  Division,  FAA, 950
L'Enfant Plaza N SW,  Washington, DC 20024; telephone  202-267-9167; email
hal.jensen@faa.gov.
PREAMBLE 

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration


14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2021-0505; Project Identifier 2018-SW-004-AD; Amendment
39-21721; AD 2021-19-03]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Leonardo S.p.a. Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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

SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for
certain Leonardo S.p.a. Model AB139 and AW139 helicopters. This AD was
prompted by reports of spurious in-flight disconnections of the
automatic flight control system (AFCS). This AD requires updating
certain ``Primus Epic'' system software, as specified in a European
Aviation Safety Agency (now European Union Aviation Safety Agency)
(EASA) AD, which is incorporated by reference. The FAA is issuing this
AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: This AD is effective November 1, 2021.
The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of November 1,
2021.

ADDRESSES: For material incorporated by reference (IBR) in this AD,
contact EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany; telephone
+49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; internet
www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this material on the EASA website at
https://ad.easa.europa.eu. You may view this material at the FAA,
Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy.,
Room 6N 321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability
of this material at the FAA, call (817) 222-5110. It is also available
in the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and
locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0505.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0505; 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 final rule, the
EASA AD, any comments received, and other information. The address for
Docket Operations is 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: Hal Jensen, Aerospace Engineer,
Operational Safety Branch, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, FAA,
950 L'Enfant Plaza N SW, Washington, DC 20024; telephone 202-267-9167;
email hal.jensen@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

The EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the
European Union, has issued EASA AD 2018-0002, dated January 4, 2018
(EASA AD 2018-0002) (also referred to as the Mandatory Continuing
Airworthiness Information, or the MCAI), to correct an unsafe condition
for certain Leonardo S.p.a. Model AB139 and AW139 helicopters.
The FAA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14
CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Leonardo S.p.a.
Model AB139 and AW139 helicopters. The NPRM published in the Federal
Register on July 7, 2021 (86 FR 35690). The NPRM was prompted by
reports of spurious in-flight disconnections of the AFCS. The NPRM
proposed to require updating certain ``Primus Epic'' system software,
as specified in EASA AD 2018-0002.
The FAA is issuing this AD to address spurious degradation or
unavailability of the full AFCS. The unsafe condition, if not
addressed, could result in temporary impairment of the automated flight
aid for control of the helicopter and increase the flightcrew's
workload. See EASA AD 2018-0002 for additional background information.

Discussion of Final Airworthiness Directive

Comments

The FAA gave the public the opportunity to participate in
developing this final rule. The FAA received no comments on the NPRM or
on the determination of the cost to the public.

Conclusion

The FAA reviewed the relevant data and determined that air safety
requires adopting this AD as proposed. Except for minor editorial
changes, this AD is adopted as proposed in the NPRM. None of the
changes will increase the economic burden on any operator. Accordingly,
the FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these
products.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

EASA AD 2018-0002 requires installation of certain ``Primus Epic''
system software, depending on the helicopter configuration. EASA AD
2018-0002 allows installation of ``Primus Epic'' system software on a
helicopter after that helicopter has had the software upgrade
installed.
This material 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

The FAA estimates that this AD affects 128 helicopters of U.S.
registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this AD:

Estimated Costs for Required Actions

Action
Labor cost
Parts cost
Cost per product
Cost on U.S. operators
Software upgrade 24 work-hours x $85 per hour = $2,040
$0
$2,040
$261,120

The FAA has included all known costs in its cost estimate.
According to the manufacturer, however, some or all of the costs of
this AD may be covered under warranty, thereby reducing the cost impact
on affected operators.

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.
The FAA is 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.

Regulatory Findings

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) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and
(3) 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 Amendment

Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the
Administrator, the FAA amends 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: