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Whats your dream STC

Mine is a mogas with 10% ethanol approval for the Cessna 150.

Would have saved me about 10 grand last year

Ten grand! Wow. How much did you fly last year?

I don't yet have a plane but flight at night and in IMC for suitably equipped PtF aircraft would be nice...although not sure that counts as a STC.

Fairoaks, United Kingdom

We worked on a Mogas/Enthanol STC many years ago. This involved more than a hundred hours of test flying a modified 150. With a number of modest changes, the 150 ran perfectly well on 100% Ethanol, and would also run on any blend with gas all the way to straight Mogas. There were challenges though with operating procedures, relative to the much greater fuel flow when running Ethanol.

There is probably little incentive for [whomever] to undertake such an STC in this market. The testing required was intense in the day, and probably worse now. Mogas is still available in North America with no Ethanol, I have it delivered to my tank several times a year, and have never had Ethanol in it (I check).

There are "issues" with corrosion with Ethanol fuel, though this is manageable. There are also material compatibility concerns, though the 150 has the most metal fuel system of most planes, so is a good candidate for such an STC.

I have been told that premium Mogas will not have any Ethanol for a long time to come, so switching to premium is an option. When the time comes that I can no longer get Ethanol free Mogas, I probably will undertake a limited STC for my 150, though I doubt I want to hold a full STC for everyone else's. For the very small profit to be had for a STC sale, once you've covered all the testing and approval costs, it's just not worth the risk of some goof suing you, 'cause he ran out of Ethanol Mogas, and crashed. Even defending such a lawsuit can take more than all the profit from all STC sales.

The only protection from such risks I can imagine would be to have a group of 150 owners form a company to hold such an STC, and every STC purchaser must buy shares in the company. Perhaps that way, the risk is not held by any one person. But, corporate dealings are not my strong point, issuing STC's is....

Home runway, in central Ontario, Canada

PDAR - I'm sure that as you say, non-alcohol auto gas is still available in Canada, but in most US states it has become either very difficult to find or unavailable. In my state, I'd estimate its been more than 5 years since we've been able to buy it. Prior to that, my aircraft operated on auto gas under STC.

Some might remember the well publicized (but typical) regulatory mess under which oxygenates were mandated by government, MTBE was approved, used and then subsequently banned by government when they found the cure was worse than the non-existent disease. Stations shut down, contaminated tanks dug up etc, to rectify a nonsensical series of mis-steps by government amateurs apparently undergoing on the job training. In pursing the endless circles of their taxpayer funded environmental religion, they also made the use of leaded Avgas effectively mandatory, in the process removing the ROI for the substantial private effort to generate existing auto fuel STCs.

The best thing would be for EASA to have a blanket acceptance of US STCs, but that would demolish the European Part 21 work creation scheme

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

I have been told that premium Mogas will not have any Ethanol for a long time to come, so switching to premium is an option.>

We're lucky in our area to still be getting Regular EN228 RON95 mogas that passes the alcohol test, but we are forbidden in the UK from using Premium grade.

Maoraigh
EGPE, United Kingdom

The best thing would be for EASA to have a blanket acceptance of US STCs

Why adopt a working system, this idea is totally absurd.

EGBE - Coventry

I hear you Peter, but the problem is not that easy.

To be fair, it is not Europe which started the "your approval is fine but we don't care, we'll do our own" but the FAA.

Generally, I'd like to see ICAO becoming the standard and a compulsory acceptance by ICAO members of STC's accepted by manufacturers of airframes, avionics and their regulative authority.

That would mean that any STC, AML but also C of A issued by the ICAO state of manufacture of the airframe and the additional appliance would have to be accepted by ALL ICAO States without any restriction.

There is NO reason whatsoever for approvals by each and every nation or regulator if all of them comply to the common certification criteria lied down in ICAO. All that happens today is state protectionism and job/revenue creation by the respective regulators plus follows a political agenda to eliminate GA particularly in Europe.

EASA has NO place to demand and restrict their own certification for US certified airplanes, US made avionics and their AML's as well as STC's certified for US made airplanes by US manufacturers.

The FAA has no place to demand and restrict their own certification for European made airplanes, European made avionics and their AMLs, as well as STC's certified for European made airplanes by European manufacturers.

And they both have no place to demand and restrict certification of a mixture of both, nor do they have a place to demand and restrict their own certification for, say, Russian or Chinese produced airplanes, as long as mutual reckognition is granted under the blanket of ICAO.

the same of course goes for FCL issues too.

But importantly, it has to go both ways. The FAA has for a long time been regarded, rightly so, as the leading certifier for Western built airframes and products, but that time now is over. Europe has become it's equal, even if the bureaucracy here is far worse, and it is time for the FAA and EASA to pretend otherwise.

Likewise, protectionist measures to keep Antonov's and Tupolevs e.t.c. out of the West may now safely be stopped too. The Cold War is over, but it's been replaced by a 3 way trade war between the US, Europe and Russia. That has to stop.

Otherwise, we may well admit that ICAO has failed as a world aviation authority and disband it.

LSZH, Switzerland

While I can surely sympathize with aviators in many countries seeking protection from their local government and rationalization by ICAO, I greatly disfavor international law applied to US aviation. Apart from anything else it would be grossly unconstitutional in the US. I want no direct influence whatsoever from overseas aviation regulators in the US. My family came here to escape their kind of nonsense, and in ennumerable trips to the EU over the last decade (4 in the last year) I am increasingly convinced it was the right thing to do.

Its probably worth pointing out that the independent FAA system is a very useful (to all of us) thorn in EASA's side, showing EASA that they are fundamentally wrong in their approach. Our job in the US is to stop US regulators learning from EASA and their like, not vice versa.

I think the USA got there first and nobody has a right to tell them their system is substandard.

It's not perfect (for example if you ask enough FSDO inspectors whether you need a 337 to put avgas in your fuel tank, eventually you will find one who will say YES, and I have seen plenty of that kind of crap myself on some projects I did) but it's the best there is, within what is possible with a human-staffed organisation.

Europe has always been doing projects that are purely politically motivated. Hardly suprising, given how small a place it is and how economically insignificant most European countries are.

EASA's publicly stated drive is "we are European and we need European regulation, not American regulation". If that's the best justification they can come out with (and it really does seem to be just that) what chance have we got?

In addition to desperately trying to play Big Enough Boy, Europe has the same problem as the USA which is having to keep out dodgy-certified products. There is no way the FAA or EASA can (or should) accept "ICAO compliant" certification from a country in which document forgery or corruption is the default way of doing things, and that means most of the 3rd World.

So simply accepting ICAO certification is not a way forward, because the only way ICAO could have got ~200 countries to sign the treaty is by watering it down to the absolute basics, which is something like private flying is allowed worldwide if the aircraft reg matches the country issuing the pilot papers, and for noncommercial flying only. On top of that you can build international passenger services but only using bilateral agreements.

ICAO certification, e.g. the USA accepting STCs issued by the Peoples' Republic of Upper Volta, was never going to work because the latter's certification processes are PROB99 going to be utterly bogus.

But there is no reason for the EU to refuse US STCs. Both "countries" have more than adequate level of QA. That is just pure protectionism. Australia accepts US STCs and US 337s.

As to why the FAA doesn't accept EU STCs, my answer is why should it? The USA "owns" most of the world's aviation industry, so it probably can't be bothered. It probably should but Europe has so deliberately set out to piss off the USA that there probably isn't much goodwill left now.

Disbanding ICAO would be a really bad idea because private flying would immediately end in most of the world. In the vast majority of countries around the world, it's only ICAO which enables you to keep a private plane and fly it. Private flying is one of the biggest expressions of personal freedom which means any half respectable dictator would be mad to allow it. We tend to think of Europe as a free place but I think most of Europe would have banned private flying soon after WW2 if it wasn't for ICAO.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
12 Posts
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