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otts688

EFBs

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It looks like my airline is going to get iPads for the whole pilot group to use as Electronic Flight Bags (EFBs). They will be the only thing we will be required to carry in our flight kits. They will have all the charts and manuals that we normally carry saved on them. It really is a cool idea, and it can get more carriers closer to a paperless cockpit, without paying the hefty prices for a bulkier unit such as the Lido systems from Lufthansa. Not to mention saving space and saving reams and reams of paper. I don't think people realize that 25% of a pilots job is putting in revisions to their manuals, at least it certainly seems that I'm doing one every fourth day. But it seems perfectly suited for flight sim as well, and I'm interested if anyone uses one for this purpose? I hear United is the next airline to get them for all of their aircraft, so there's an added bit of realism for you.Erik Otterson

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Would you mind answering a few questions?Is your airline using regular iPads or are they custom build for the aviation environment? How much does Lido cost in comparison to iPads? Where is your airline based? The iPad is definitely used for Flight Simming and there are EFB apps available for it. It's an interesting development to see it being used in commercial aviation.

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My airline is a large regional carrier in the United States under the Pinnacle Inc. umbrella, which seems to just keep buying more airlines. They will basically be normal iPads that will be FAA approved. The company asked Jeppesen to make an app for them specifically for this purpose. We currently use Lido charts, and maybe the only passenger carrier in the US that does, FedEx is the only other airline in the US to use Lido. They might have a little more security built in but as far as I know they are stock iPads. But with internet on board the aircraft getting up to date weather would be a fantastic tool as the onboard radar never gives you the big picture of what your heading into especially now that thunderstorm season is fast approaching.Erik Otterson

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As far as how much Lido's system costs I have never been able to find an actual figure. I've heard a couple thousand dollars not to include the extra costs of installation and certification. I'm sure there's someone here that can give you an exact quote on the price. But its bound to be more than a $500 iPad. And I just found the FS Kneeboard, pretty cool, flight sim has come a long way!

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Another question...what's the backup protocol should the iPad fail during a flight? Would you be without charts at all in that case? Or are there at least two iPads onboard with the same content? Just curious...

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Both the captain and first officer would be required to carry one, and they would have to be updated every two weeks just like the paper charts we use. So if a checkairman came on board to do a line check he would have to make sure that the iPad was current, which probably saves him some time instead of going through each route manual and the other required paper work. I wouldn't doubt they would keep a set of paper charts on board as a backup as well.Erik OttersonKMSP

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