A TSO is a minimum performance standard, defined by the Federal Aviation Administration, used to evaluate an article. An article can be a material, part, component, process, or appliance. (See Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, 21.1(b)(2)). Each TSO covers a certain type of article. When authorized to manufacture an article to a TSO standard, this is referred to as a TSO authorization. Receiving a TSO authorization is both a design and production approval.
Receiving a TSO Authorization is not an approval to install and use the article in the aircraft. It means that the article meets the specific TSO and the applicant is authorized to manufacture it.