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PROPOSED AD ALEXANDER SCHLEICHER GMBH & CO. SEGELFLUGZEUGBAU: Docket No. FAA-2022-0288; Project Identifier MCAI-2021-00913-G.
(a) COMMENTS DUE DATE

    The FAA must receive comments on this airworthiness directive (AD)  by
    May 9, 2022.

(B) AFFECTED ADS

    None.

(c) APPLICABILITY

    This AD applies  to Alexander Schleicher  GmbH & Co.  Segelflugzeugbau
    Model  ASW-15  gliders,  all  serial  numbers,  certificated  in   any
    category.

(d) SUBJECT

    Joint Aircraft System Component (JASC) Code 5712, Wing,  Rib/Bulkhead.

(e) UNSAFE CONDITION

    This AD was prompted by mandatory continuing airworthiness information
    (MCAI)  originated  by an  aviation  authority of  another  country to
    identify and correct an unsafe  condition on an aviation product.  The
    MCAI describes the unsafe condition  as wing root rib damage.  The FAA
    is issuing this AD to detect and correct damaged root ribs. The unsafe
    condition,  if  not  addressed,  could  result  in  reduced structural
    integrity of the wing assembly, which could lead to loss of control of
    the glider.

(f) COMPLIANCE

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

(g) ACTION

(1) Within 30 days  after the effective date of this AD  and thereafter at
    intervals  not to  exceed 12  months, inspect  all wing  root ribs  (4
    places) for cracks, looseness and damage in accordance with the Action
    section in  Alexander Schleicher  GmbH &  Co. Segelflugzeugbau  ASW 15
    Maintenance Instruction G, Issue 1, dated June 28, 2021. If there is a
    crack in any root rib, a loose rib or lift pin bushing, or any damage,
    before further flight,  replace the root rib in accordance with Action
    paragraph (B) in Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co.  Segelflugzeugbau ASW
    15 Technical Note No. 29, dated June 28, 2021,  and  steps 1 through 7
    in Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co.  Segelflugzeugbau ASW 15 Repair in-
    struction exchange of wing root ribs according to TN 29 dated June 28,
    2021.

(2) Replacing all four wing root ribs is terminating action for the repet-
    itive inspections required by this AD.

(h) 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
    certification office,  send it to the attention  of the person identi-
    fied in paragraph (i)(1) of this AD and email 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.

(i) RELATED INFORMATION

(1) For more information about this AD,  contact Jim Rutherford,  Aviation
    Safety Engineer,  General Aviation & Rotorcraft Section, International
    Validation Branch, FAA,  901 Locust,  Room 301, Kansas City, MO 64106;
    phone: (816) 329-4165; email: jim.rutherford@faa.gov.

(2) Refer  to  MCAI  European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2021-
    0187, dated August 9, 2021,  for related information.  You may examine
    the EASA AD in the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by search-
    ing for and locating Docket No. FAA-2022-0288.

(3) For service information  identified  in  this  AD,  contact  Alexander
    Schleicher GmbH & Co.  Segelflugzeugbau,  Alexander-Schleicher-Str. 1,
    Poppenhausen, Germany D-36163 ; phone: +49 (0) 06658 89-0; email: info
    @alexander-schleicher.de; website https://www.alexander-schleicher.de.
    You may view this service information at the FAA,  Airworthiness Prod-
    ucts Section,  Operational Safety Branch,  901 Locust, Kansas City, MO
    64106.  For information  on the availability  of this material  at the
    FAA, call (817) 222-5110.

Issued on March 15, 2022. Lance T. Gant, Director, Compliance & Airworthi-
ness Division, Aircraft Certification Service.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 9, 2022.
PREAMBLE 

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2022-0288; Project Identifier MCAI-2021-00913-G]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co.
Segelflugzeugbau Gliders

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD)
for all Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co. Segelflugzeugbau Model ASW-15
gliders. This proposed AD was prompted by mandatory continuing
airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of
another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an
aviation product. The MCAI identifies the unsafe condition as wing root
damage. This proposed AD would require repetitively inspecting the wing
root ribs for cracks, looseness, and damage and replacing any root rib
with a crack, a loose rib or lift pin bushing, or any damage. The FAA
is proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 9,
2022.

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 https://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.
For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Alexander
Schleicher GmbH & Co. Segelflugzeugbau, Alexander-Schleicher-Str. 1,
Poppenhausen, Germany D-36163; phone: +49 (0) 06658 89-0; email:
info@alexander-schleicher.de; website: https://www.alexander-schleicher.de.
You may view this service information at the FAA,
Airworthiness Products Section, Operational Safety Branch, 901 Locust,
Kansas City, MO 64106. For information on the availability of this
material at the FAA, call (817) 222-5110.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2022-0288; 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 MCAI,
any comments received, and other information. The street address for
Docket Operations is listed above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jim Rutherford, Aviation Safety
Engineer, General Aviation & Rotorcraft Section, International
Validation Branch, FAA, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, MO 64106;
phone: (816) 329-4165; email: jim.rutherford@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

The FAA invites you to send any written relevant data, views, or
arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed
under ADDRESSES. Include ``Docket No. FAA-2022-0288; Project Identifier
MCAI-2021-00913-G'' at the beginning of your comments. The most helpful
comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA
will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend
this proposal because of those comments.
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
https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you
provide. The agency will also post a report summarizing each
substantive verbal contact received about this NPRM.

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 NPRM 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 NPRM, 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 they will not be placed in the public
docket of this NPRM. Submissions containing CBI should be sent to Jim
Rutherford, Aviation Safety Engineer, General Aviation & Rotorcraft
Section, International Validation Branch, FAA, 901 Locust, Room 301,
Kansas City, MO 64106. Any commentary that the FAA receives which is
not specifically designated as CBI will be placed in the public docket
for this rulemaking.

Background

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the
Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued
EASA AD 2021-0187, dated August 9, 2021 (referred to after this as
``the MCAI''), to address an unsafe condition on certain Alexander
Schleicher GmbH & Co. Segelflugzeugbau Model ASW 15 gliders. The MCAI
states:

Occurrences were reported of finding wing root rib damage.
Investigation is ongoing to determine the root cause of the damage.
This condition, if not detected and corrected, could reduce the
structural integrity of the wing assembly of the sailplane.
To address this potential unsafe condition, Schleicher issued
the TN [technical note] to provide inspection instructions.
For the reasons described above, this [EASA] AD requires
repetitive inspections of each affected part and, depending on
findings, replacement. This [EASA] AD also introduces restrictions
for installation of an affected part.

You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov
by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2022-0288.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

The FAA reviewed Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co. Segelflugzeugbau
ASW 15 Technical Note No. 29, dated June 28, 2021. This service
information specifies inspecting the root ribs at the wings.
The FAA also reviewed Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co.
Segelflugzeugbau ASW 15 Repair instruction exchange of wing root ribs
according to TN 29, dated June 28, 2021. This service information
specifies procedures for replacing the root ribs.
In addition, the FAA reviewed Alexander Schleicher GmbH & Co.
Segelflugzeugbau ASW 15 Maintenance Instruction G, Issue 1, dated June
28, 2021. This service information specifies procedures for inspecting
the root ribs at the wings for damage.
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 ADDRESSES.

FAA's Determination


This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another
country and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to
the FAA's bilateral agreement with this State of Design Authority, it
has notified the FAA of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and
service information referenced above. The FAA is issuing this NPRM
after determining the unsafe condition described previously is likely
to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Proposed AD Requirements in This NPRM

This proposed AD would require accomplishing the actions specified
in the service information already described.

Costs of Compliance

The FAA estimates that this AD, if adopted as proposed, would
affect 20 gliders of U.S. registry.
The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this proposed
AD:

Estimated Costs

Action
Labor cost
Parts cost
Cost per product
Cost on U.S. operators
Inspect root ribs 1 work-hour x $85 per hour = $85
Not Applicable
$85
$1,700

The FAA estimates the following costs to do any necessary
replacements that would be required based on the results of the
proposed inspection. The agency has no way of determining the number of
gliders that might need these replacements:

On-Condition Costs

Action
Labor cost
Parts cost
Cost per product
Replace all four root ribs 8 work-hours x $85 per hour = $680
$1,000
$1,680

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

The FAA 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) Would not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and
(3) Would 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: