DENVER – The recent release of the revised Part 23 airworthiness standards for the Federal Aviation Regulations will “significantly” streamline the process of certifying the Sun Flyer, according to officials with the company developing the electric flight trainer.
The FAA released a final rule in December 2016 for the new Part 23, which enables a more efficient certification process for general aviation aircraft with innovative technologies, such as electric-powered Sun Flyer. The rules also include provisions for electric propulsion.
“We are extremely pleased with the outcome of the reform efforts,” said George Bye, CEO of Aero Electric Aircraft Corp., Sun Flyer’s developer. “We extend our sincere thanks and gratitude to the FAA for incorporating so many of the recommendations made by GAMA, AOPA, EAA and those in our industry who are working tirelessly to revitalize general aviation.”
John Knudsen, AEAC executive vice president and former FAA attorney, echoed Bye’s enthusiasm for the new rule, calling the revised Part 23 standards a game-changer.
“This is probably one of the best rule re-writes I have ever seen the FAA do by taking out extraneous requirements for small airplanes,” he said. “It is truly a substantial improvement.”
Power-on tests commenced on the prototype Sun Flyer late last year, and nearly 100 customer deposits and options for deposits have been received, according to company officials.
The two-seat trainer is intended to be the first FAA-certified, U.S.-sponsored, all-electric airplane to serve the flight training and general aviation markets. It features low operating costs, low aircraft unit cost, low noise and the elimination of CO2 exhaust pollutants, company officials noted.