For operators of commercial aircraft, including airlines and business jet charter or fractional-share operations, gaining regulator approval for use of iPad tablet computers as Class 2 electronic flight bags (EFBs) can take time and effort. There is a simpler way to complete this process and that is working with a company that has figured out what needs to be done to satisfy the regulators and also meet aeronautical quality standards.
Pilots who want to practice using FltPlan’s new FltPlanGo moving-map and charts app can do so using Laminar Research’s X-Plane flight-simulator program. FltPlanGo running on Apple iPads can show simulated own-ship position, and pilots can fly X-Plane while using FltPlanGo just as they would in a real aircraft. “It’s important for pilots who don’t fly often or those who have been away from flying to practice workflows and procedures,” said Sarah Wilson, principal/director of new technologies at FltPlan.
The FAA issued Jeppesen a letter of operational suitability that allows the Apple iPad mini to be used in cockpits at commercial operators when the device is paired with Jeppesen’s electronic flight bag (EFB) solutions. This letter covers both the iPad mini with and without the Retina display. The FAA process was conducted to provide assurance for pilots and aviation operators that Jeppesen data, when displayed on the 7.9-inch iPad mini screen, is acceptable for use.
The Squadron’s new iFrat flight risk assessment tool for the iPad uses a color-coded risk scale and breaks down flights into five elements: planning, environment, assets, communications and event. Pilots record an assessment of each element, based on their flight experience and knowledge; iFrat then generates a simple pictorial report exportable via email. New FAA rules require helicopter EMS pilots to conduct a risk assessment before each flight.
Sporty’s Pilot Shop (N-100, N-101) highlighted its recently unveiled Partner Programs along with new products and services at its annual Sun ’n’ Fun press conference here in Lakeland, Fla. Sporty’s trio of Partner Programs provide discounts and rebates to flight instructors, flying clubs and FBOs for their orders from Sporty’s, paid quarterly. “One [flying] club just got a check for $200,” said Michael Wolf, president of the pilot supplies provider.
BendixKing is ending product support for its myWingMan iPad app and will reimburse purchasers with “a full refund equal to any subscription fees paid.” While pilots will still be able to use the app, BendixKing noted that “no further product or chart data updates will be available, and as such [we] suggest that you uninstall myWingMan to prevent the inadvertent use of expired data.” The company explained, “We do not feel that it fully represents the value and quality that BendixKing provides daily to pilots worldwide.
Gama Aviation has received approval from the UK CAA for flight crews to use Apple iPads for flight-planning and airborne chart purposes when flying G-registered aircraft. Gama pilots will use iPads equipped with Jeppesen’s Mobile FliteDeck app. The iPads also feature the Airwatch Secure Content Locker, “a cloud-based library publication system that allows crews to download and manage operational flight-deck documents,” according to Gama. So far 22 Gama pilots are trained to use the iPad EFBs, which also contain operating manuals, reference handbooks and checklists.
Garmin’s Virb Elite action camera now integrates with the Garmin Pilot iPad/iPhone app, which can not only control the camera but also displays a live view of the video being recorded by the camera. The integration with Garmin Pilot (version 6.0 or later) is available only with the Virb Elite, not with the regular Virb.
Houston-based ForeFlight (Booth No. 3603), creator of ForeFlight Mobile iPad app, is here at Heli-Expo showcasing features in the app it claims helicopter pilots “can’t live without.”
These features include subscription-free ADS-B weather; hazard overlays; and a color-coded flight rules feature that provides basic weather conditions information at a glance. The information can be used for pre-flight preparation or en route, when ADS-B IN weather is available or using an inflight Internet connection.
Sikorsky Aircraft launched iFly Sikorsky, its first iPad flight calculator application for the company’s commercial S-92 helicopter platform, here at Heli-Expo 2014. The application replicates common performance calculations described in the S-92 Rotorcraft Flight Manual (RFM) and also has a weight-and-balance calculator.