Avionics News February 2016 - 72
J A S O N
D I C K S T E I N
AEA GENERAL COUNSEL
the U.S. and Europe/Canada
* Interior articles (seats or seatbelts).
* Life-saving equipment (life vests or life rafts).
* Materials (aircraft fabric or fasteners).
The one thing that all TSOs have in common is they all
have the potential to be used for equipment that could potentially be installed in multiple aircraft.
he U.S., Europe and Canada have been hard at work
to smooth the process associated with transferring
technical standard order equipment across international
boundaries. 2015 saw new agreements among the authorities
for mutual acceptance of TSO'd equipment.
What is a TSO?
A TSO is a technical standard order,
The one thing that all TSOs have in common
which is a set of performance parameters
is they all have the potential to be used
published by the government for specific
for equipment that could potentially be
civil aviation equipment.
In Canada, these are known as CANinstalled in multiple aircraf t.
TSOs, and in Europe, they are known
as ETSOs. In recent years, these performance parameters have been harmonized among these three
The Federal Aviation Administration has about 165 active
jurisdictions. Generally, TSOs, CAN-TSOs and ETSOs subTSOs, against which components can be approved.
stantially say the same thing.
TSOs are issued for equipment that typically cross platWhat is a TSOA?
forms. For example, a seatbelt could be used in a general
When a U.S. applicant develops a design that meets the
aviation aircraft or a transport category jet aircraft, and it will
performance parameters of a TSO and also develops a profunction the same way.
duction quality system that meets the FAA's requirements,
Examples of TSOs include:
the applicant can receive permission from the government
* Avionics (TCAS or ADS-B equipment).
to produce the TSO articles. That permission is known as a
* Exterior equipment (wheel, brakes or lights).
TSO authorization, or TSOA. A TSOA is both a design and
* Instruments (airspeed instruments or vertical velocity
a production approval.
Canada and the EU have correlative programs for issuing