ATI is proud to be the only source-approved MRO shop in the USA offering a complete in-house end-to-end J85 engine and accessory MRO service

J85 Certification Process

Many J85 engine operators are looking for either OEM or US Air Force certification of the engine companies that repair and overhaul their engines. The OEM does not certify this engine, but the US Air Force does provide something called Source Approval.

An introduction to the Source Approval Request (SAR) Process: Aero Turbine, Inc., (ATI) is the most experienced worldwide provider of GE J85 engine overhauls, repairs, and modifications supporting the Department of Defense and foreign allies for over 40 years, with a corporate headquarters and repair facilities located at Stockton Metropolitan Airport (SCK). ATI is the only company in the world approved by the USAF to repair the whole J85-21 engine, and current sole source supplier for Management of Items Subject to Repair (MISTR) contract supporting all USAF/USN T-38C aircraft. ATI is a uniquely qualified provider due to all work scope for engines and LRU’s being performed within our own facility. This efficiency allows us to provide superior support and cost savings to our customers both foreign and domestic.

A Source Approval Request (SAR) package is an assembly of information required of a prospective new supplier for a specific item (NSN) that is currently procured as other than full-and-open. A SAR package contains all technical data needed to demonstrate that the prospective contractor can competently manufacture the NSN to the same level of quality or better than the Approved Source. This is especially important for components classified as Critical Application Items (CAI) and Critical Safety Items (CSI) as defined by SECNAVINST 4140.2 or AFMCI 23-113

The SAR package includes all the required engineering data, proposed repair plan, and other legal documents required to repair the subject item. It also demonstrates that the supplier has recently repaired and delivered either the subject item, or part(s) of similar complexity compared to the subject item.

SARs are intended for actual repair vendor only. The actual repair vendor is the agency with adequate facilities, equipment and personnel that performs the physical repair processes that produce the deliverable part or other items of supply for the government. The actual repair vendor must repair the part in-house.

Any SAR package submitted for an assembly, module, or whole engine must meet all the additional requirements including a matrix that describes the supplier level of repair capability, applicable technical data, and a method of part replacement for each embedded item in the assembly/module. Aero Turbine Inc. retains the highest approval level of repair capability which requires a repair SAR package that demonstrates the supplier qualification to perform all disassembly, cleaning, inspection, repair, and assembly of technical data for the subject item.

The potential source must provide the following documents for consideration:

  1. One of the following Quality Assurance Certificate (QAC) with a valid expiration date: ISO 9001, AS9100, AS9110, or NATO AQAP-2070
  2. Provide a copy of the company Quality Assurance System (QAS) manual and all supporting/referenced documentation
  3. Provide a complete list of all equipment owned and used for the manufacturing and repair of parts by the supplier
  4. If located within the United States or Canada, provide a copy of the suppliers DD Form 2345 with a valid expiration date.
  5. Provide a supplier quality history summary of Deficiency Reports (DR) experienced for the last 36 months including but not limited to: internal deficiencies, commercial deficiencies, FAA Service Bulletins, Maintenance Review Board (MRB) actions, Quality Deficiency Reports (QDR), Laboratory Quality Review Orders (LQRO), Offeror Report of Nonconformance (ORON), Supplier Reports of Non-conformance (SRON), Material Deficiency Reports (MDR), statistical reports of nonconformance and nonconforming material rejection reports.
  6. The supplier must provide NADCAP, OEM/Prime, DOD, or other approved certification and/or audit and must have a certificate included in the supplier company profile for Significant Industrial Processes (SIP). Examples of these are Heat Treating, Chemical Processes, Vapor Deposition, Coatings, Welding, Non-conventional Machining, Peening, Soldering, Non-Destructive Inspection (NDI), and Measurement and Inspection.


The primary SAR Categories are defined as Categories 1-2

Category 1. This category covers suppliers who repair the exact subject item, using OEM technical data, for the prime contractor, OEM, DOD, civil agency, foreign government, or the civil sector under Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Category 2. This category covers PS who have not previously repaired the exact subject item, but have repaired other items similar in material, coatings, design features, industrial processes, etc. for the prime contractor, OEM, DOD, civil agency, foreign government, or the civil sector under FAA.

The Government Competitive Advocate Office (CAO) will conduct initial review, evaluate business case and technical review, and conduct a Weapons System engineering evaluation. If approved the CAO will issue an approval letter to the supplier