Contributed by James L. Ferguson, ODA PMA Administrator
Max Viz Camera pod machined from a solid piece of aluminum with no welds. Designed, modeled and fabricated in-house, this part was completed in approximately 8 hours. Duncan is currently researching the viability of PMA approving this part.
Aircraft service providers that hold aircraft Parts Manufacturer Approval (PMA) authority under ODA have a significant advantage in FAA approval response times. These service providers are able to respond almost immediately to any issues in the application and/or certification of new PMA parts. However, the pathway to PMA authority isn’t easy.
Duncan Aviation recently received approval through the FAA’s Wichita Aircraft Certification Office (ACO) to add PMA to its revised Organizational Designated Authority (ODA). FAA order 8100.15 details the many steps we navigated through to prove we had the capabilities, processes and aviation professionals in place even to be considered.
PMA aircraft parts applicants must qualify, make application and be granted this approval by the FAA Organizational Management Team (OMT).
In order to be considered for PMA aircraft parts authority under ODA, applicants must already hold PMA authority through their local Manufacturing Inspection District Office (MIDO). At the time PMA authority is being considered under ODA, the PMA holder must show the FAA that they meet the required qualifications for delegation as identified in FAA Order 8100.15.
An application is submitted by the ODA holder documenting how the requirements are met along with procedures on how the ODA PMA will function. These procedures are documented in the ODA Procedures manual.
After application, the OMT reviews the history of the PMA parts applicant, qualifications and the procedures manual. The OMT includes the applicant’s local ACO, Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), MIDO and Aircraft Evaluation Group (AEG). All must give approval during review, which includes on-site visits as necessary.
Once delegation is received, PMA becomes a part of the applicant’s ODA. There is usually very little impact to production since the procedures, experience, and training already in place for previous PMA delegation are still applicable. The most significant change comes in how new PMA supplements (granting authority to produce new articles under PMA) are added and the maintenance of current PMA supplements.
Under ODA PMA, delegates no longer submit application to the FAA for approval in the way that they did previously. The ODA on-site now reviews the applications for each supplement or supplement addition and grants approval. This is where the advantage in response time is realized.
PMA Response Times
Since the application and approval process is accomplished internally, in coordination with the FAA when applicable, Duncan Aviation is able to respond almost immediately to any issues in the application and/or certification of new PMA parts that may be vital to the maintenance of a customer’s aircraft. It makes the process much simpler and more easily managed.
Since 1981, Duncan Aviation has been manufacturing aircraft parts under its PMA authority with the FAA’s approval. In 2011, Duncan Aviation added ODA PMA authority.
For more information about aircraft parts manufacturing and other Duncan Aviation ODA services, contact Stacy Carnahan in ODA Engineering Sales.
James L. Ferguson is Duncan Aviation’s ODA PMA Administrator. He has been an Aviation Professional with Duncan Aviation since 1979.