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AOL travel website Gadling takes a look at the American Airlines iPad Electronic Flight Bag that received initial FAA approval more than a year ago.

The airline's pilots can replace 40 pounds of company manuals and maps with a pair of iPads (one for each pilot), along with a long-life battery to keep the iPads powered for 24 hours.

Because both pilots are carrying iPads with backup batteries, the FAA feels this is as redundant as paper manuals.
So far American has approval for the 777, 737, MD-80 and is just awaiting approval for the 757/767 fleet. Hopefully, this will be just in time for my return to that airplane, as once you use this setup, you won't want to go back to the paper.

To get that approval, American had to have the iPad tested in a hypobaric chamber to simulate how the device would handle during a rapid decompression. They also had to arrange for mount testing with the FAA, which is ironic since our manuals weigh far more than the iPad and aren't secured in place. Many takeoffs have resulted in a book or two sliding off the side table and onto the floor.

Article Link: A Look at American Airlines' iPad Electronic Flight Bag
 

b3thomso

macrumors member
May 20, 2012
47
0
I am a private jet pilot and we have been approved and have been using the iPad alone for about a year now. This is old news.
 

SvenSvenson

macrumors regular
Jul 17, 2007
219
163
I am a private jet pilot and we have been approved and have been using the iPad alone for about a year now. This is old news.

This isn't news, old or otherwise. It's an article about the impact of something that was news.
 

notabadname

macrumors 68000
Jan 4, 2010
1,569
736
Detroit Suburbs
I am a private jet pilot and we have been approved and have been using the iPad alone for about a year now. This is old news.

As a private pilot, you apparently don't know much about the Airline industry and what an effort it has taken to get approval for this in Part 121 Carrier Operations. There is a reason this is reported as a "first". I am a pilot for Delta Air Lines, and we are in the process of getting the same approval. It has been "in test" with the FAA for over 18 months. Getting a process like this approved, across a fleet of 700 aircraft, of various types and configurations, and trained to a pilot group of 12,000 pilots is very significant.
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,216
1,608
To get that approval, American had to have the iPad tested in a hypobaric chamber to simulate how the device would handle during a rapid decompression. They also had to arrange for mount testing with the FAA, which is ironic since our manuals weigh far more than the iPad and aren't secured in place. Many takeoffs have resulted in a book or two sliding off the side table and onto the floor.

Hmm a book does not smash if it falls. Silly silly person!
 

needfx

Suspended
Aug 10, 2010
3,931
4,248
macrumors apparently
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

well, they are more environmentally friendly paper-wise & fuel wise, I have stumbled upon their annual weight/fuel ratio in the past.

real trouble is when a power issue drops in for a visit

a better solution would be if these were implemented on all planes through a centralised database accessed on a per flight demand. can't be that difficult, but yet we saw an article not a week ago that ipads are cheaper, lighter & easier to implement and deploy for on-board entertainment, why shouldn't it be for flight plans too?
 

GregAndonian

macrumors 6502
Jul 31, 2010
344
0
This seems really cool and all, but it seems strange to me that they always tell passengers to turn off their electronic devices during takeoff and landing, but now it's ok to use iPads in the cockpit?? :confused:
 

techpr

macrumors 6502a
Sep 9, 2008
669
768
San Juan, PR
This seems really cool and all, but it seems strange to me that they always tell passengers to turn off their electronic devices during takeoff and landing, but now it's ok to use iPads in the cockpit?? :confused:

Ironic for the same device.

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Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

40 pounds ls a lot in Aviation terms. the iPad is here to stay for long time, don't worry.
 

viggen61

macrumors 6502
Jul 24, 2002
438
11
New Jersey
I thought you didn't get reception that high? :confused:
Unless the plane has WiFi...

All the flight data and manuals would be loaded onto the iPads as either custom apps or PDFs, all but eliminating the need for any connection. Get updates when on the ground, just like with the paper ones...

blackapple.gif
blackapple.gif
 

chainprayer

macrumors 6502a
Feb 10, 2008
638
2
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

Because when a new iPad line comes out all others before it are unusable....

It's not like it will be used to play the latest gaming apps (well, hopefully)
 

fedup flyer

macrumors regular
Jan 18, 2008
241
53
The iPads are a good idea, but wouldn't it be prudent to keep at least one hard copy of the manual onboard?

There has to be.
We have built in EFBs where I work and one full set of paper manuals are required by the Feds.
It is nice not to have to tote around all of manuals plus not having to do revisions is a HUGE bonus.

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I am a pilot for Delta Air Lines, and we are in the process of getting the same approval. .

Any clue as to what software they are using?
Is it the Jepp or something proprietary?
I am still not sold on the Jepp "Pro" app as I had had to many problems with it.
 

notabadname

macrumors 68000
Jan 4, 2010
1,569
736
Detroit Suburbs
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

Yes, it is a fantastic idea. The books get revised and updated every two weeks. If an iPad were updated every two years, it would still be a massive improvement and savings. Not to mention much more effective to use in the cockpit than a paper manual. Additionally, the books weigh about 80 lbs total. So the iPads pay for themselves in fuel savings. They aren't being used to play games, they are displaying PDF files. They don't have to upgraded with the same regularity as devices running more aggressive software. But they would save money, even if replaced annually.
 

iPhysicist

macrumors 65816
Nov 9, 2009
1,343
1,004
Dresden
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

Most recent tools in chip production (not Crunchips) run Win XP on Pentium IIIs. So put that in perspective. Don't think you can play angry birds with these iPads or do other things than access the flight books, maps...
It is cool! And there are two for redundancy.
 

shurcooL

macrumors 6502a
Jan 24, 2011
941
118
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.
You're right, after a new generation iPad is released, the older ones will suddenly no longer be able to display PDFs. :rolleyes:
 

devilbond

macrumors member
Mar 8, 2010
91
1
Unfortunately the stewards/stewardesses will ask them to kindly switch their iPads off during take-off and landing.
 

hodaka

macrumors newbie
Feb 16, 2010
24
0
You're right, after a new generation iPad is released, the older ones will suddenly no longer be able to display PDFs. :rolleyes:

Fail.
My 12 YO daughter has a first-gen iPad that does everything she wants it to. Games, Netflix, even PDFs and EPUBs. And we are currently on the fourth gen of the iPad - pretty good lifespan for this type of device, really. No, you can't load the latest iOS on it, but it still functions fine for a connected-happy pre-teen.
 

shurcooL

macrumors 6502a
Jan 24, 2011
941
118
Fail.
My 12 YO daughter has a first-gen iPad that does everything she wants it to. Games, Netflix, even PDFs and EPUBs. And we are currently on the fourth gen of the iPad - pretty good lifespan for this type of device, really. No, you can't load the latest iOS on it, but it still functions fine for a connected-happy pre-teen.
I think you missed the part where I was sarcastic and wanted to demonstrate the same thing you pointed out.

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Unfortunately the stewards/stewardesses will ask them to kindly switch their iPads off during take-off and landing.
Funny, but I don't think they need them during take off and landing anyway. It's during flights if something has to be looked up. They prepare for take off and landing and then do things off the top of their head + intstruments, there's no time to look at a book when you have to be looking through the window/at the instruments. I could be wrong, but that's my understanding.
 

Gasu E.

macrumors 603
Mar 20, 2004
5,059
3,188
Not far from Boston, MA.
Replacing books with consumer devices that will be obsolete in a few years. Fantastic idea.

True, if they end up crash-landing on an uncharted island that's shielded from detection by a mysterious force field, they will be stuck with obsolete technology, and possibly even run out of power. Under other circumstances, the technology will get upgraded, routinely, as needed.
 
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