This Day in FAA History: February 27th

Full FAA Chronology at this link.

19620227: FAA announced Project Little Guy, a three-year program aiming at development of a simpler, more efficient cockpit layout for light aircraft. The results of this research and development effort would be available to future aircraft designers.
19690227: FAA launched the Experimental Aviation Technology Education Project in cooperation with a number of institutions of higher learning to establish college-level programs responsive to the manpower needs of the aviation community and FAA. Curriculums at the institutions combined broad liberal arts educational subjects and aviation-oriented academic study with on-the-job experience at FAA facilities. After a two-year test period at 15 schools, FAA removed this program from the experimental stage, renamed the work study program, and transferred it from the Washington Headquarters to FAA’s Regional Offices.
19700227: FAA abolished the McGrath (Alaska) Area Office and transferred the territory formerly served by that office to the Anchorage and King Salmon Area Offices. (See April 23, 1969.)
19750227: The Microwave Landing System (MLS) Executive Committee, a group of experts representing various Federal agencies, chose the time reference scanning beam (TRSB) technique over the Doppler scanning technique as the U.S. candidate for the international standard microwave landing system. The action by the committee ratified a recommendation made in late 1974 by the MLS Central Assessment Group (a recommendation participated in 140 experts assembled by FAA from around the world) and cleared the way for submission of the time reference scanning beam technique to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as the U.S. candidate for adoption as the international precision landing system of the future. (See June 7, 1973, and July 22 1975.)
19970227: Department of Transportation and the Department of Defense announced an agreement to provide a second frequency for its global positioning system (GPS), and guarantee uninterrupted availability of the L2 frequency for civil users in the interim. The development of a second frequency was consistent with a recommendation by the Gore Commission. (See March 29, 1996; March 30, 1998.)
20120227: FAA proposed raising the qualification requirements for first officers who fly for U.S. passenger and cargo airlines. Consistent with a mandate in the Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010 (see August 1, 2010), the proposed rule would require first officers – also known as co-pilots – to hold an airline transport pilot (ATP) certificate, requiring 1,500 hours of pilot flight time. Previously, first officers had to hold a commercial pilot certificate, which required 250 hours of flight time. The proposal also would require first officers to have an aircraft type rating, which would involve additional training and testing specific to the airplanes they fly. Other highlights of the proposed rule included
* A requirement for a pilot to have a minimum of 1,000 flight hours as a pilot in air carrier operations that require an ATP prior to serving as a captain for a U.S. airline.
* Enhanced training requirements for an ATP certificate, including 50 hours of multi-engine flight experience and completion of a new FAA-approved training program.
* An allowance for pilots with fewer than 1,500 hours of flight time, but who have an aviation degree or military pilot experience, to obtain a “restricted privileges” ATP certificate. These pilots could serve only as a first officer, not as a captain. Former military pilots with 750 hours of flight time would be able to apply for an ATP certificate with restricted privileges. Graduates of a four-year baccalaureate aviation degree program would be able to obtain an ATP with 1,000 hours of flight time, only if they also obtained a commercial pilot certificate and instrument rating from a pilot school affiliated with the university or college. (See December 21, 2011.)
20170227: FAA announced Kenya complied with international safety standards and had been granted a Category 1 rating. A Category 1 rating meant Kenya’s civil aviation authority met International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards. With the Category 1 rating, Kenyan air carriers that secure the requisite FAA and DOT authority could establish service to the United States and carry the code of U.S. carriers. FAA had not previously assessed Kenya’s civil aviation authority for compliance with ICAO standards.
20190227: The Department of Transportation issued an interim final rule prohibiting passenger airlines from carrying rechargeable lithium-ion batteries as cargo, because of the potential for causing uncontrollable fire in cargo holds. The rule also required lithium-ion cells and batteries to be shipped at not more than a 30 percent state of charge when carried aboard cargo-only aircraft.
20230227: FAA awarded nearly $1 billion to 99 airports nationwide. The funding would help meet the growing demand for air travel and invest in key areas to help get travelers in and out of airports more quickly and improve the passenger experience by investing in new baggage systems, larger security checkpoints, and improved ground transportation. Other projects focused on increasing terminal sustainability and improving accessibility for disabled individuals. Several grants addressed the needs of aging air traffic control towers. The investments went to airports in 47 states and two territories.