The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has now given the thumbs up to airlines replacing the over 40lbs of paper flight manuals and other documentation currently contained in airplane cockpits with a single iPad. This move, designed to increase the speed with which the information is accessed is also a healthcare blessing in disguise for the pilots who currently have to lug these materials around with them.
Not only are they saving bulk and weight, the electronic copies of these manuals are much easier to use and allow the pilots to access information significantly faster –something we can all appreciate when our safety may be at risk. In addition, updates and corrections to documents is a fast and easy process and doesn’t require cumbersome substitution of existing pages and other processes that are prone to human error.
While each airline has to seek their own approval for using devices such as the iPad, the device has succeeded in proving it is safe to use in the cockpit environment.
It is expected that use of iPads will continue to extend beyond that of providing documentation to supplying things like aeronautical charts, maps, current weather information and flight plans.
Alaska Airlines pioneered this migration to an electronic flight bag earlier this year when their pilots were given approval to use the iPad to access digital flight, systems and performance manuals.
[via AppleInsider, image courtesy of AppleInsider/American Airlines]