Regional fractional aircraft provider Executive AirShare received temporary FAA authorization to use the Apple iPad Mini as a Class 1 electronic flight bag (EFB) in its fleet of Learjet 45XRs, Phenom 100s and 300s and King Airs. This authorization is the first step needed to gain full authority for paperless cockpits, which is expected in the first quarter of next year. With the provisional approval, Executive AirShare pilots can perform basic and advanced functions previously performed using paper documents, but flight crews must still carry printed charts as a backup.
Electronic flight bag
Web Manuals, a Swedish company that offers digital operational manual creation, publication, distribution and maintenance services, is set to expand its sphere of operations and open a U.S. office in Boston later this year. The Malmö-based firm streamlines the task of maintaining and sharing up-to-date company operational or maintenance manuals, which are becoming ever more crucial in the current safety management system climate.
Jeppesen has released its FliteDeck Pro electronic flight bag (EFB) software for Microsoft Window 8 tablets, and Delta Air Lines is implementing FliteDeck Pro for 11,000 pilots on Microsoft Surface 2 tablets. FliteDeck Pro for Windows 8 offers worldwide navigation charts, including data-driven en route information and terminal charts, all of which are updated with “changes-only” content to facilitate faster updates. Unlike the current version of the iPad, the Surface tablet allows users to run two applications in split screens.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia-based charter operator Alpha Star Aviation Services (Booth 3824) has equipped its entire fleet with electronic flight bags (EFBs). The six VIP aircraft include three Airbuses (ACJ318, ACJ319 and ACJ320), one Gulfstream G550, one Hawker 900XP and one ATR 42. The company intends to have its pilots using EFBs–iPads connected to a Rockwell Collins system–during the entire flight in the short term. “Our crews were trained by Lufthansa and FlightSafety,” CEO Salem Al Muzaini added.
EBACE attendees are invited to bring their mobile devices to the UTC Aerospace Systems (UTAS) stand (3829) for a live demonstration of the company’s tablet interface module (TIM). The demo emulates a real flight by piping in simulated flight data through the TIM, which is mounted both in a UTC VIP seat and in a typical flight deck configuration. Visitors can plug their mobile device into the TIM’s USB interface to see how their apps display the live flight data and also stick around for a free battery top-off courtesy of UTAS.
Navtech launched its iCharts electronic flight bag (EFB) solution for iOS devices today at the Arinc EFB Users Forum in Memphis, Tenn. iCharts is Navtech’s next generation of charting products that allows pilots to view aeronautical charts using an iPad or iPad mini. Further, it plans to release eCharts, a Windows version of its electronic chart software, at the end of next month. Both of these chart products are part of Navtech’s suite of charting solutions designed to replace paper aeronautical charts.
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.
MyGoFlight and the IMC Club have jointly launched the EFB Challenge, a knowledge contest intended to study and advance the use of low-cost tablets, such as the iPad, as electronic flight bag s(EFB). Interested pilot contestants can enter local contests and winners will advance to regional events. Regional finalists will compete nationally during EAA AirVenture 2015 in Oshkosh, Wis., in late July.
We owe the FAA a debt of gratitude for the most excellent job the agency has done to provide data to aid our flying. It is amazing that for a relatively small cost pilots have access to a wealth of navigation information. Much of it—VFR charting especially—is gorgeous, pretty enough to hang on a wall or use as wrapping paper after the expiration date.
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