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Fuel Tanks Not Certified, So What?  
User currently offlineBlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4177 posts, RR: 2
Posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2979 times:
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In this thread it is written that the Argentinian government's A310 has had the certification of its auxiliary fuel tanks withdrawn by Boeing due to a lack of maintenance. In line with my somewhat provocative title, I am wondering what the practical effects are, especially on a government-owned aircraft ?

A certification withdrawal in itself doesn't impede the use of these tanks, of course, but what consequences does it have ? The insurance carrier refuses coverage until it gets proof of re-certification ? Outside MROs refuse to work on the plane until the tanks are disabled so they can't be accused of ignoring/messing with them ?


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12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 1, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 2938 times:

Boeing does not issue certifications, they are issued by regulatory agencies, so Boeing could not withdraw a certification of the auxiliary fuel tanks.

Additionally Boeing has no authority when it come to the airlines maintenance practices, again this is done by the regulatory agencies.


User currently offlineBlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4177 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2898 times:
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So am I to conclude that the OP in the thread I mentioned was mistaken in saying the auxiliary tanks could not be used due to Boeing not approving their maintenance standards ?


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User currently offlineBAe146QT From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2006, 996 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 2870 times:



Quoting BlueFlyer (Reply 2):
So am I to conclude that the OP in the thread I mentioned

It wasn't the OP (Original Poster) - it was someone down-thread that said it. The tone of their post suggests they are angry at the situation, (one way or another), but not that they have any actual knowledge of what the president's motivations are.

474218 (is that a tail number, chap?) pretty much said what I was thinking, but put more eloquence into it. The airliner might be a Boeing, but as far as I understand it, certification is not their decision. It is solely that of the regulators in the countries you want to fly to (or in).

I don't know anything about this situation, (so you can stop reading now if you like) but at a guess, the modification was not a Boeing one, is not warrantied by them, and the company that made the mod is either not recognised by the FAA or hasn't sought their approval. Somewhere along the line, this lack of Boeing support and lack of FAA certification have become merged to become "Boeing won't allow it".



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User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 2870 times:



Quoting BlueFlyer (Reply 2):
So am I to conclude that the OP in the thread I mentioned was mistaken in saying the auxiliary tanks could not be used due to Boeing not approving their maintenance standards ?

Approval of an operators maintenance come from their regulatory agency, not the manufacture. Boeing can write a maintenance program for an operator but getting it approved and following it is strictly between the operator and the regulatory agency.


User currently offlineNjxc500 From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 243 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 2833 times:

This may be a dumb question, but an A310 is not made by boeing anyway, so I'm sure they definitely wouldn't have anything to do with that.

User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6428 posts, RR: 3
Reply 6, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 2809 times:



Quoting BlueFlyer (Thread starter):
In this thread it is written that the Argentinian government's A310 has had the certification of its auxiliary fuel tanks withdrawn by Boeing due to a lack of maintenance. In line with my somewhat provocative title, I am wondering what the practical effects are, especially on a government-owned aircraft ?

Read reply #2 in the thread that you quoted a little closer. The aircraft in question is a Boeing 757.

The aircraft appears to carry no civilian registration (which is common for military aircraft), so they could operate it however they wanted. However, they probably want to stay in Boeing's good graces (little things like "manufacturer support"), so they will probably not use the aux. fuel tank in question.

Also, in that same reply:

Quote:


I don't think that the 757 T-01 has flown to the USA since 2004, when the government began to fear that it could be embargoed upon arrival due to the defaulted debts to the Paris Club.

So, it appears that part of the reason they didn't take the presidential 757 to the 'states is because they didn't want it confiscated, repossessed, etc.  Wink



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineBlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4177 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 2762 times:
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Quoting KELPkid (Reply 6):
Read reply #2 in the thread that you quoted a little closer. The aircraft in question is a Boeing 757.



Quoting Njxc500 (Reply 5):
This may be a dumb question, but an A310 is not made by boeing anyway

Duh, sorry about that.



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User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 8, posted (6 years 2 months 4 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 2711 times:



Quoting BlueFlyer (Thread starter):
I am wondering what the practical effects are, especially on a government-owned aircraft ?

Not all that large...provided the local regulator approves, they're good.

Quoting 474218 (Reply 1):
Boeing does not issue certifications, they are issued by regulatory agencies, so Boeing could not withdraw a certification of the auxiliary fuel tanks.

That's not exactly true. Boeing (the company) doesn't issue certifications. However, Boeing does have delegated authority from the FAA to issue certification on a wide variety of issues. So, technically, it's the FAA issuing the certification (due to the delegated authority) but it's done by a Boeing employee without any consultation/verification from the FAA. Legally, it's the FAA, but from a practical standpoint it's Boeing. The FAA doesn't have anywhere close to the manpower required to handle all of the certification paperwork that flows from a major OEM every day.

Quoting Njxc500 (Reply 5):
This may be a dumb question, but an A310 is not made by boeing anyway, so I'm sure they definitely wouldn't have anything to do with that.

Although it was clarified to a 757, Boeing did make auxiliary tanks at one time. It's possible, although I have no idea if it happened, that those could be fitted to other aircraft.

Tom.


User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 9, posted (6 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2687 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 8):
That's not exactly true. Boeing (the company) doesn't issue certifications. However, Boeing does have delegated authority from the FAA to issue certification on a wide variety of issues. So, technically, it's the FAA issuing the certification (due to the delegated authority) but it's done by a Boeing employee without any consultation/verification from the FAA. Legally, it's the FAA, but from a practical standpoint it's Boeing. The FAA doesn't have anywhere close to the manpower required to handle all of the certification paperwork that flows from a major OEM every day.

Are referring to a "Designated Engineering Representatives"? DER's are OEM employees but work with the FAA. However, final approval must come from the FAA.


User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 10, posted (6 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2664 times:



Quoting 474218 (Reply 9):

Are referring to a "Designated Engineering Representatives"?

They're called "Authorized Representatives" (AR's) now, but yes.

Quoting 474218 (Reply 9):
DER's are OEM employees but work with the FAA.

True.

Quoting 474218 (Reply 9):
However, final approval must come from the FAA.

Not necessarily true. It depends on the system and the nature of the approval. The AR/DER has authority to approve for certain things (most commonly, structural repairs) without FAA coordination. They can also recommend approval for other things (typically, anything outside their prior authorization), but that must be finalized by the FAA.

At the end of the day, the legal trail ends up back at the FAA administrator, but there is no FAA/OEM coordination for approvals that the FAA has already delegated authority to the OEM.

Tom.


User currently offlineThirtyEcho From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 1659 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (6 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 2631 times:

Yikes!

I hear that Airbus has withdrawn certification on the entire Boeing 777 fleet.

Just what in the hell is the object of this ill-informed topic?

Next thing you know, Cessna is going to withdraw the certification of all Mooney aircraft.

Sheesh!


User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (6 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 2607 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 10):
Not necessarily true. It depends on the system and the nature of the approval. The AR/DER has authority to approve for certain things (most commonly, structural repairs) without FAA coordination. They can also recommend approval for other things (typically, anything outside their prior authorization), but that must be finalized by the FAA.

I agree an AR/DER can approve things like repairs, many years ago I was in training to become a DER. However they can't "withdraw certification" from an operator, which is what the thread started stated:

Quoting BlueFlyer (Thread starter):
certification of its auxiliary fuel tanks withdrawn by Boeing due to a lack of maintenance.

Only the FAA or other regulatory agency can "certify/decertify.


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