Europe awaiting the United States as it becomes the first major regulator to declare the max safe to fly.
Boeing has satisfied the European aviation safety regulator (EASA) that the changes the aircraft manufacturer has made to its 737 MAX have made the aircraft safe enough to return to the region’s skies.
- EASA declare the 737 MAX safe to fly
- A 4-week public consultation to take place
- Must await the FAA before issuing airworthiness directive
After September’s test flights, EASA performed final document reviews ahead of a draft airworthiness directive it expects to issue, according to a statement from Patrick Ky, executive director of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency.
As part of an interview, Patrick Ky commented: “Our analysis is showing that this is safe [the aircraft], and the level of safety reached is high enough for us.
“What we discussed with Boeing is the fact that with the third sensor, we could reach even higher safety levels.”
A four week period for public consultation will follow the issue of the draft airworthiness directive.
The development of a so-called synthetic sensor to add redundancy will take 20 to 24 months, according to Ky.
The developed sensor assists the pilot when one or both of the mechanical angle-of-attack sensors on the Max fails.
The software solution will be required on the larger Max 10 variant before its debut targeted for 2022 and retrofitted onto other variants.
Details of the FAA’s progress are likely within the next 4-6 weeks.
The FAA must clear the 737 MAX as airworthy before EASA and other agencies around the world can lift the grounding, under international law.
At this point in time it is understood that Boeing has not submitted its final package of documentation including software audits and safety assessments; however, the submissions are expected soon.
Key suppliers share prices also advanced on the news, with engine maker General Electric Co. jumping 6.1% to $7.29 for the biggest gain on the S&P 500 index. Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc., which manufactures fuselages, rose 4% to $19.41.
Thew news is also welcome for customers of the business jet variants of the MAX either awaiting green delivery, or particularly those part way through completion. It enables completed BBJ MAX deliveries to take place in the not to distant future as it enables the aircraft to be certified as airworthy and entry into service with their owner customers.
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