Flight guidance system.
(a) Quick disengagement controls for the autopilot and autothrust functions must be provided for each pilot. The autopilot quick disengagement controls must be located on both control wheels (or equivalent). The autothrust quick disengagement controls must be located on the thrust control levers. Quick disengagement controls must be readily accessible to each pilot while operating the control wheel (or equivalent) and thrust control levers.
(b) The effects of a failure of the system to disengage the autopilot or autothrust functions when manually commanded by the pilot must be assessed in accordance with the requirements of § 25.1309.
(c) Engagement or switching of the flight guidance system, a mode, or a sensor may not cause a transient response of the airplane's flight path any greater than a minor transient, as defined in paragraph (n)(1) of this section.
(d) Under normal conditions, the disengagement of any automatic control function of a flight guidance system may not cause a transient response of the airplane's flight path any greater than a minor transient.
(e) Under rare normal and non-normal conditions, disengagement of any automatic control function of a flight guidance system may not result in a transient any greater than a significant transient, as defined in paragraph (n)(2) of this section.
(f) The function and direction of motion of each command reference control, such as heading select or vertical speed, must be plainly indicated on, or adjacent to, each control if necessary to prevent inappropriate use or confusion.
(g) Under any condition of flight appropriate to its use, the flight guidance system may not produce hazardous loads on the airplane, nor create hazardous deviations in the flight path. This applies to both fault-free operation and in the event of a malfunction, and assumes that the pilot begins corrective action within a reasonable period of time.
(h) When the flight guidance system is in use, a means must be provided to avoid excursions beyond an acceptable margin from the speed range of the normal flight envelope. If the airplane experiences an excursion outside this range, a means must be provided to prevent the flight guidance system from providing guidance or control to an unsafe speed.
(i) The flight guidance system functions, controls, indications, and alerts must be designed to minimize flightcrew errors and confusion concerning the behavior and operation of the flight guidance system. Means must be provided to indicate the current mode of operation, including any armed modes, transitions, and reversions. Selector switch position is not an acceptable means of indication. The controls and indications must be grouped and presented in a logical and consistent manner. The indications must be visible to each pilot under all expected lighting conditions.
(j) Following disengagement of the autopilot, a warning (visual and auditory) must be provided to each pilot and be timely and distinct from all other cockpit warnings.
(k) Following disengagement of the autothrust function, a caution must be provided to each pilot.
(l) The autopilot may not create a potential hazard when the flightcrew applies an override force to the flight controls.
(m) During autothrust operation, it must be possible for the flightcrew to move the thrust levers without requiring excessive force. The autothrust may not create a potential hazard when the flightcrew applies an override force to the thrust levers.
(n) For purposes of this section, a transient is a disturbance in the control or flight path of the airplane that is not consistent with response to flightcrew inputs or environmental conditions.
(1) A minor transient would not significantly reduce safety margins and would involve flightcrew actions that are well within their capabilities. A minor transient may involve a slight increase in flightcrew workload or some physical discomfort to passengers or cabin crew.
(2) A significant transient may lead to a significant reduction in safety margins, an increase in flightcrew workload, discomfort to the flightcrew, or physical distress to the passengers or cabin crew, possibly including non-fatal injuries. Significant transients do not require, in order to remain within or recover to the normal flight envelope, any of the following:
(i) Exceptional piloting skill, alertness, or strength.
(ii) Forces applied by the pilot which are greater than those specified in § 25.143(c).
(iii) Accelerations or attitudes in the airplane that might result in further hazard to secured or non-secured occupants.
[Doc. No. FAA-2004-18775, 71 FR 18191, Apr. 11, 2006]