In July of 2011, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) gave authorization for pilots to replace their heavy, bulky flight kits with an iPad. Instead of having to lug around 40 pounds of manuals, maps, and other documentation, commercial airlines could exchange paper for technology. Over the past year-and-a-half, various airlines have switched to paperless flight bags. We have reported on different aspects of iPads as flight bags over the years, but we’ve never seen more than a snapshot or two of the process.
However, a blog post from Cockpit Chronicles with Kent Wien offers a two-minute glimpse into what American Airline pilots can now do with the iPad instead of the bulky and cumbersome Jeppesen approach plates (AKA: “Jepps”).
The video shows Wien talking about how much easier and more convenient it is to place an iPad on a mount instead of lugging a huge briefcase with three or more large manuals in it, plus the company manual and other additional books.
The FAA has approved iPad flight bags for American Airlines for three different types of planes. Each cockpit features two RAM mounts, two iPads, and two Hypermac battery backups to ensure that pilots don’t run out of juice mid-flight. Hopefully, they won’t be wasting battery power on Angry Birds.
Check out the video of Wien showing around the cockpit of an MD-80. If you can’t see the clip below, click here for a direct link to it on YouTube.