Pre-Application Services are offered by EASA to external stakeholders interested in receiving technical advice services prior to or outside of an actual certification process conducted in accordance with Commission Regulation (EU) No 748/2012 and its Annex 1 (Part 21)
Table of content
- Available services
- Good to know
- How to request for pre-application services
- Next steps
Introduction of a disruptive technology or innovative concept - CATEGORY 1
Services supporting the introduction of a disruptive technology or innovative concept (including ground and air operations), whose feasibility may need to be confirmed, and for which adequate regulatory framework is not yet existing or not mature.
Example of a project
Assessing the feasibility of a “New concept of large transport airplane using liquid Hydrogen as a source of energy including for the propulsion”, or of a “New aircraft and concept of operation for space tourism flight, launched as balloon and returning to the ground as controllable parachute”, are not addressed in the Agency’s set of technical specifications and operational regulatory framework and thus fall in this category.
Innovation Partnership Contract (IPC)
Projects falling under CATEGORY 1 shall typically be subject to an Innovation Partnership Contract (IPC) established between the Agency and the organisation requesting the service.
Expected outcomes of a IPC
- the confirmation of the feasibility of the concept, as well as
- a first set of cross-directorate draft policies, guidelines, and regulatory action plans that will define the early path according to which existing regulations may be modified, or new regulations be developed to accommodate the innovative concept or disruptive technology.
Introduction of a product with embodied innovative or disruptive technologies - CATEGORY 2
Services supporting the introduction of a product with embodied innovative or disruptive technologies, which can be:
- an innovative product, whose concept is feasible and mature, but for which the adequate design and/or operational regulatory framework is not yet existing or not mature; or
- a more conventional product, for which the regulatory framework is to a broad extent mature, but for which the design organisation seeks advice on the subsequent establishment of the draft certification basis for all or part of it (typically products with an expected lead time for certification longer than the times prescribed in Part 21 for the certification of the given product).
Example of a project
Assessing the ‘Integration of a Disruptive Cockpit for Single Pilot Operation’, or an ‘Helicopter Electric/Hybrid Engine Back-up System’, derived from existing platforms but significantly challenging the certification and operational existing technical specifications and operational requirements, allowing the Agency to be far better prepared when receiving an application for certification of the retained type design.
Pre-Application Contract (PAC)
Projects falling under CATEGORY 2 shall typically be subject to a Pre-Application Contract (PAC) established between the Agency and the organisation requesting the service.
Expected outcomes of a PAC are the draft generic elements that will:
- be the foundation for the subsequent establishment by the Agency of the formal product certification basis (in the form of applicable Certification Specifications plus optionally to be consulted and published Special Conditions and Equivalent Safety Findings) and its Interpretative Material and Means of Compliance once the application for a certificate is submitted.
- also include launching the development of the regulatory actions that are or have previously been identified in the regulatory action plans (in case an IPC had been completed prior to the PAC).
Technical Advice - CATEGORY 3
Services providing technical advice for a specific technical matter.
Example of a project
Assessing the compatibility of a new methodology for testing fire and smoke detection in conjunction with fire-resistant containers (ISO 19281) in a CAT environment with very specific and narrowed technical advice.
Technical Advice Contract (TAC)
Projects falling under CATEGORY 3 shall typically be subject to a Technical Advice Contract (TAC), intended for simpler and more focused technical questions.
Expected outcome of a TAC is a technical report
Good to know
The Pre-Application Services are performed by the Agency on a purely voluntary basis, i.e. as a service, and shall be regulated by a contract between the Agency and the organization requesting that service. The process of application, and the contract duration thereafter can range from a few months to several years depending on the complexity of the project.
The Pre-Application Services do not replace or cover other processes, such as Certification Support for Validation (CSV), Outsourcing Contracts, research, etc.), or where Bilateral Agreements and, where applicable, their implementing provisions require the Agency to perform technical assistance upon the request of the aviation authority entitled to do so under the provisions of the Bilateral Agreement.
The contracts mentioned above are without prejudice to the responsibilities of EASA and the applicant under Regulation (EU) No 748/2012 and its Annex 1 and shall explicitly specify that no Agency certificate can be granted on the sole basis of a pre-application service contract since the types of activities described by this working instruction are outside Part-21 certification.
Fees and Charges: The cost of the services provided by the Agency under IPC, PAC or TAC shall be recovered in accordance with the provisions of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/2153 of 16 December 2019 (Fees and Charges). To date, this Regulation mandates to charge by the hours and at the rate indicated in Part II of its Annex.
How to request for pre-application services
If you wish to submit a request for Pre-Application Services involving one of the contracts, please get in touch with the Applicant Relationships Section at Applicant.Services [at] easa.europa.eu providing the following supporting documents:
- a statement of work detailing the scope and objective of the project
- an estimation of the workload and a timeline
- and indicate the contract (IPC, TAC or PAC) you deem appropriate for your project.
- The Agency will proceed to an assessment of the request.
- The Agency may reject or delay acceptance of a Pre-Application Service request based on the maturity of the solution and the availability of EASA resources. A delay will result in the request pending in the ‘Waiting room’.
- The Agency’s decision on a request is communicated to the requestor in writing.
Should you have any further questions or suggestions, please contact: Applicant.Services [at] easa.europa.eu