Part 21 - Aircraft Certification

Special Category certification is broken into six subcategories – Experimental, Exhibition, Amateur-built, Primary, Light Sport Aircraft (LSA), and Limited – enabling an aircraft to be placed in the most suitable subcategory.

  • Experimental limits aircraft to true experimental activities such as research and development, showing compliance with rules, or flight evaluation.
  • Exhibition accommodates aircraft that will be primarily operated for exhibition at aviation events, aerobatic competitions, film industry, or private use.
  • Amateur-built accommodates aircraft built by their owners for sport and recreation purposes. The aircraft will migrate to this category once it has completed flight evaluation under the Experimental subcategory.
  • Primary certification standard originated in the United States and allows for future imports. An aircraft certificated as Special Category – Primary may be operated for hire or reward or for flight training.
  • Light Sport Aircraft (LSA), when constructed and flight tested under factory conditions, may be operated for hire or reward or for flight training.
  • Limited accommodates ex-military and vintage aircraft (including helicopters) that have been constructed in series, under factory conditions, in a controlled design environment.

Further Information

Applicable forms:

24021/14 (PDF) Light Sport Aircraft Statement of Compliance

All CAA forms can be found on the Forms page

Aircraft Operator Requirements poster (PDF)