Avionics News July 2020 - 53

1.	 Weighs less than 254 pounds empty weight,
light sport aircraft set the operational limitations as part of
excluding floats and safety devices which
the consensus document approving the design for flight.
are intended for deployment in a potentially
Light sport aircraft may, if the manufacturer's limitations
catastrophic situation;
allow, be used for night and IFR flight - providing that
2.	 Has a fuel capacity not exceeding 5 U.S. gallons;
the operator meets all the FAA requirements for being IFR
3.	 Is not capable of more than 55 knots calibrated
qualified - at minimum a private certificate with the IFR
airspeed at full power in level flight; and
endorsement and that the LSA itself be equipped for and
4.	 Has a power-off stall speed which does not exceed
meet FAA requirements for IFR operations as specified in
24 knots calibrated airspeed.
14 CFR ยง 91.205.
5.	 If nonpowered, a maximum
Meanwhile, experimental, amateurweight of 155 pounds.
built aircraft can be built and equipped
As long-time ultralight flyers will
to fly IFR, day and night, day only or
WITH SO MANY OPTIONS
note, while not required by federal
VFR only. Again, the pilot must meet
AVAILABLE TODAY FOR
aviation regulations, training is the
the requirements for the operations,
EQUIPPING AN EAB
smart approach, whether coming
and the builder's operational
AVIONICS STACK, IT'S
to ultralights as a zero-time trainee
limitations are detailed to allow night
NOT SURPRISING THAT
or whether coming from among
and IFR.
SOME BUILDERS SEEK
the ranks of licensed pilots - the
With so many options available
OUT AVIONICS FROM
differences between ultralight operating
today for equipping an EAB avionics
THE BUDGET END OF THE
SCALE, EQUIPMENT THAT
characteristics and the typical entrystack, it's not surprising that some
LETS THEM EQUIP AND
level Part 23 aircraft are that stark.
builders seek out avionics from the
FLY NIGHT AND IFR ON A
Several years ago, the Federal
budget end of the scale, equipment
BUDGET. THAT TYPICALLY
Aviation Administration approved the
that lets them equip and fly night
MEANS
USING
NON-TSO'D
creation of another new category of
and IFR on a budget. That typically
AVIONICS AND EQUIPMENT
aircraft and a new licensing regimen
means using non-TSO'd avionics and
- OFTEN TO THE SURPRISE
to qualify to fly them - light sport
equipment - often to the surprise of
OF BUILDERS WHO
aircraft and the sport pilot certificate.
builders who wrongly believe that IFR
WRONGLY BELIEVE THAT
The training regimen is half that
operations require TSO'd equipment.
IFR OPERATIONS REQUIRE
outlined for the private pilot certificate
Not true.
TSO'D EQUIPMENT.
- minimum of 10 hours of dual and
No wonder the option to use non10 hours of solo, plus sundry crossTSO'd equipment holds considerable
country and operational milestones.
attraction to builders looking to save
But similar to the ultralight operating requirement, the
on their building costs. And much of these equipment
sport pilot certificate requires no medical exam or approval.
options can deliver performance equal to TSO'd versions
In place of the medical exam and certificate for FAAfor operating in instrument meteorological conditions.
endorsed pilots, however, the agency requires the LSA
operator to hold a valid driver's license from the operator's
Operating limitations: The defining document
home state.
Flying an EAB is governed by what the builder puts into
The logic here: If your state considers you healthy
its operating limitations. Operating limitations are issued
enough and with good vision, corrected or uncorrected, the
with - and as a part of - the airworthiness certificate when
FAA considers you healthy enough to pilot an LSA, which
the aircraft is initially inspected and licensed by the FAA. The
by regulation can carry only the pilot and one passenger.
operating limitations document is where the pilot must look to
When the light sport aircraft category came into
verify whether the aircraft is approved for a particular type of
existence, there existed something of a "gentleman's
operation - for example, aerobatics (i.e., IFR, aerobatics, etc.).
agreement" holding that light sport aircraft would not be
eligible for night and IFR flight. But the manufacturers of
Continued on following page
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Avionics News July 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News July 2020

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Avionics News July 2020 - Intro
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Avionics News July 2020 - Cover2
Avionics News July 2020 - 1
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Avionics News July 2020 - Cover3
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