2 min

The Influence of Automotive Regulations on Aerospace Standards

Aerospace engines and components must withstand working environments: featuring immense pressure, extreme heat and high-voltage electricity. As such, these parts are subject to comprehensive, meticulous standards to safeguard operational integrity and personnel safety.

With the hope of keeping regulations thorough but increasing their harmonization by reducing or eliminating manufacturer-specific requirements, the aerospace world recently adopted the AS13100 standard, various sections of which are notably similar to automotive regulations. Understanding this context is critical for organizations that must be AS131000-compliant in the wake of the rule's Dec. 31, 2022 implementation.

APQA and PPAP: A Brief History

Advanced product quality planning (APQP) stemmed from a motivation similar to AS13100 adoption: Major U.S. automakers including Chrysler, Ford and GM wanted to harmonize product planning principles across shared component supply chains.

Through this collaboration of regulators and manufacturers, the APQP principles emerged, released by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) in 1992. As we know it today, the standard consists of five phases:

  • Planning
  • Product design and development
  • Process design and development
  • Product and process validation
  • Ongoing feedback assessment and continuous improvement

Under APQP, design and development begin while stakeholders are still finalizing budgets, technical requirements and projected time-to-order in the planning phase. Similarly, validation starts before any prototype is complete, lessening the chances that a faulty product or process will make it to mass production, let alone customers.

The production part approval process (PPAP) functions as a subset of APQP. The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) developed PPAP, though OEMs and automaker-authorized testing and certification services handle its day-to-day implementation. When used successfully in conjunction with APQP, PPAP demonstrates that design specifications are being followed by all component suppliers. It also creates a consistent process for part approval and establishes a set of guidelines that must be followed if a supplier wants to change a product or process.

The path from AS9100 to AS9145

AS9100 is based on ISO 9001 but designed by the International Aerospace Quality Group (IAQG) to address the sector's specific technical intricacies. It focuses on production and service provision, planning, risk identification and assessment, design and development, and also addresses noncompliance risks.

AS9145 serves a purpose similar to AS9100, but features a notable difference: The former specifically adds APQP and PPAP processes to aerospace product development, including design risk analysis (DRA), process failure mode and effects analysis (PFMEA) and measurement system analysis (MSA). The elevated heat and pressure risks inherent to air and space operations make it twice as important for craft operating in those settings to only use parts that have passed through such rigorous testing.

AS13100 Emphasizes and Expands on AS9100

Chapters B and C of AS13100 are what specifically bring the well-known auto part frameworks of APQP and PPAP to aerospace. The former mandates compliance with these automotive part quality standards and provides specific stipulations for engine manufacturers that aren't directly outlined in AS9100. Chapter C, meanwhile, is laser-focused on defect prevention tools.

Other major AS13100 changes aren't about adding or subtracting processes but rather changing their deployment. The standard mandates that audits, for example, shouldn't take place on an ironclad schedule but should be scheduled based on active risk and the severity thereof. Also, AS13100 includes "human factors" standards meant to improve the performance, resource availability and working situations of employees involved in engine manufacturing: matters not always addressed in other, similar regulations.

Easing Into a Post-AS13100 World

As AS13100 is in its infancy, certifications, courses and similar services aren't yet available for organizations to ensure their compliance. For now they may have to "self-certify" and focus on meeting the standards that preceded AS13100. TÜV SÜD can provide AS9100 certification, recertification and quality audits to gauge your organization's current preparedness for AS13100.

To learn much more about the specifics of AS13100 and prepare for it to become universal, download our latest whitepaper.

Download Whitepaper

Next Steps

Site Selector