FDR Readout Requirements
Depending on the aircraft type, the number of parameters that need to be validated can be considerable. When the FAA published the “88 Parameter Rule” (FAR Part 121.344), many people incorrectly assumed that only 88 parameters needed to be verified during such a check. In reality, those 88 parameters can quickly become 200-300 parameters (or more). For example, one of the FAA Mandated parameters is “Trailing Edge Flaps”. On many modern aircraft, four (or more) parameters are used to record the positions of the various trailing edge flaps on the aircraft.
The frequency in which these readouts must take place differs by country and regulatory body, but they are quite similar. In Canada, the readout must be done every 3000 flight hours or 12 months, whichever comes first (CARs Standard 625 Appendix C 17). In the UK, the requirement is every 12 months (CAP 731), while in the US, the FAA recommends it take place every 18 months or less (FAA AC 20-141B).
While it is the operator’s responsibility to ensure these checks are completed regularly, most, if not all governing bodies do permit the check to be outsourced to organizations that are deemed competent to do so. There are a number of significant cost saving advantages to having Scaled Analytics perform this service on your behalf.
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