MOC SC-VTOL – Issue: 2 Means of Compliance with the Special Condition VTOL

  • May 13, 2021


Means of Compliance with the Special Condition VTOL, Issue 2, Date 12 May 2021

Statement of Issue
EASA has received a number of requests for the type certification of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft,
which differ from conventional rotorcraft or fixed-wing aircraft. In the absence of suitable certification
specifications for the type certification of this type of product, a complete set of dedicated technical
specifications in the form of a Special Condition for VTOL aircraft was developed. The Special Condition
addresses the unique characteristics of these products and prescribes airworthiness standards for the issuance
of a type certificate, and changes to this type certificate, for a person-carrying VTOL aircraft in the small category,
with lift/thrust units that are used to generate powered lift and control.
This Special Condition was subject to a public consultation process and finally issued by EASA in July 2019.
The Special Condition VTOL establishes the safety and design objectives. This approach, previously utilized for
the development of CS-23 Amendment 5, is also used for VTOL designs in order not to limit technical innovation
by describing prescriptive design solutions as certification standards. The Special Condition does not contain the
means that are possible to demonstrate compliance with the safety and design objectives.
The Means Of Compliance (MOC) contained within this document address the applicant´s requests for
clarification of EASA’s interpretation of these objectives and of possibilities how to demonstrate compliance
with them. Some of these MOCs contain material which should be considered to be guidance material to assist
the applicant with an understanding of the objective rather than providing a definitive means of compliance.
In the preparation of these MOCs EASA has followed the same principles, and pursued the same objectives, as
with the Special Condition. First, to provide sufficient flexibility to address different architectures and design
concepts, although it is acknowledged that all possible cases cannot be considered in these MOCs and
alternatives can be proposed by applicants to address some particular design features. In addition, the proposed
MOCs should enable an equal treatment of all applicants, by establishing a level playing field and ensuring that
a comparable level of safety in the compliance with the objectives of the Special Condition is achieved by all
EASA is committed to continue supporting the industry in the development of safe VTOL aircraft. To this end
EASA has decided to prioritize the publication of MOC with the Special Condition VTOL and to issue them in a
sequential manner. This approach will allow EASA to focus its resources where the greatest safety impact will
be achieved and where the need for clarity is more urgently required. It will furthermore allow the industry to
gain an early insight into EASA’s interpretation and expectations from the design objectives of the Special
Condition which could have an important effect in the design decisions, instead of waiting until exhaustive
guidance for the Special Condition is developed.
Consequently, the first issue of the MOCs mostly concerns subjects that are considered to drive basic design
choices and have a higher safety impact on the overall VTOL aircraft architecture. The comment response
document published alongside the issue 2 of this document collects all comments received during public
consultation of issue 1 and the detailed responses provided by EASA. It should serve as an important source of
information to clarify the correct interpretation of this document.
Successive issues of this MOC document will include new MOCs as well as supplements to the existing ones.
They may recognize available industry standards.

Finally, it is recognized that the experience gained during the certification of these new products and their entry
into service will allow to increase the knowledge in their certification. It is possible that a better insight into the
particular characteristics of these products is gained, which might result in modifications of particular elements
of the first MOCs that are issued. EASA will do so considering first and foremost the safety of the European
citizens but also mindful of the effects on all stakeholders.