July 27, 2011
By Dave Hirschman
Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association (LAMA) President Dan Johnson gave an upbeat assessment of the light sport aircraft segment at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., July 27 saying the category is poised for growth and is laying the groundwork for worldwide acceptance of manufacturing standards.
LSAs are certified according to consensus ASTM standards; LAMA is pushing for international acceptance of ASTM rather than individual and often repetitive examinations from regulators in each country LSAs are sold and flown. He said European countries as well as Brazil and Australia have accepted, or are near to accepting, ASTM for LSAs--a move that could increase worldwide sales of the relatively simple aircraft limited to no more than two seats, 120 KIAS top cruise, and a maximum 45-knot stall speed.
Johnson said ASTM certification also could serve as a model for a planned FAA rewrite of Part 23 standards for light aircraft.
"[General aviation manufacturers] would like to move in the direction of LSAs and ASTM in terms of consensus standards for aircraft certification in the future," he said.
Johnson said the LSA market is increasingly recognized as the entry point for new GA pilots and will play an important role in the future of flying in the United States and abroad.
"Light sport is increasingly the place where new students come into aviation," he said.
Future of GA,
Advocacy and Legislation,
AOPA is looking to the Michigan Senate for “refinement” of proposals amended unfavorably in last-minute House action.
The General Aviation Pilot Protection Act would allow pilots to use the driver’s license medical standard for noncommercial VFR flights in aircraft weighing up to 6,000 pounds with no more than six seats, as long as they carry fewer than five passengers, fly below 14,000 feet msl, and fly no faster than 250 knots.
The Civil Aviation Medical Association is objecting to the FAA's proposed sleep apnea policy, warning that the evidence doesn't justify the approach.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.