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Navdata update in r/l

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Hi all. Just curious about how the nav data and other information is updated each month on a FMC in real life/real world. Is it done over-the-air (wirelessly) or does a technician connects a hardrive with the new info with a data cable? Who provides the airline with said info each month?Thanks, and regards. Armando Arjona

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Actually, the navdata is uploaded with PCMCIA cards, a rather old fashioned way. (At least at our Airline)

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The NAVDATA base is updated monthly by a technician with a normal floppy disc, most airlines have a onboard data loader near the cockpit entry door next to the observer seat on the R/H side. Where all software can be uploaded to there related system's like the navdata base software or Operational software for the FMCS


Mark Scheerman

 

Boeing 737-6/7/8/900 Ground Engineer

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Hi all. Just curious about how the nav data and other information is updated each month on a FMC in real life/real world. Is it done over-the-air (wirelessly) or does a technician connects a hardrive with the new info with a data cable? Who provides the airline with said info each month?Thanks, and regards. Armando Arjona
One of my jobs is to update the nav data on our fleet of 13 charter aircraft. In fact, I'm in the process of doing this right now, as the new cycle starts on Thursday.Depending on the age of the aicraft and its systems, we either use floppy disks or a USB thumb drive. In both cases, we download the master data program from our accounts at Honeywell and Rockwell-Collins. Theses files, when run on an office PC, are used to load the diskettes and/or thumb drives.In the aircraft, running on ground power, we access the FMS maintenance page, where there is a menu option to load a new database. In an aircraft with a USB drive, we simply insert the thumb drive in the data reader, start the loading process, and walk away until it is finished.Floppy disks are much more time consuming. Worldwide data on a Collins Proline-21 system occupies 13 diskettes, and each one takes about 5 minutes to load. The engineer has to sit in the cockpit the whole time, swapping diskettes after eack one finishes loading, and each FMS has to be loaded separately, so the whole process takes about three hours. A diskette-based Honeywell system only requires 7 diskettes for worldwide data, and both FMS can be loaded simultaneously, so it only takes about 25 minutes to do the update.Some of our smaller business jets use a Honeywell GNS-XLS FMS, which uses a PCMCIA card. A few days before a new database starts, we receive a card with the new cycle from Honeywell, we simply swap cards in the aircraft, and return the expired one back to Honeywell in a prepaid mailing envelope.

Jim Barrett

Licensed Airframe & Powerplant Mechanic, Avionics, Electrical & Air Data Systems Specialist. Qualified on: Falcon 900, CRJ-200, Dornier 328-100, Hawker 850XP and 1000, Lear 35, 45, 55 and 60, Gulfstream IV and 550, Embraer 135, Beech Premiere and 400A, MD-80.

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All the technology in these birds, and still using floppy disks....I don't even know where I could buy one if I wanted to.

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All the technology in these birds, and still using floppy disks....I don't even know where I could buy one if I wanted to.
Both the Honeywell and Collins FMS systems have the option to upgrade the original floppy disk data reader to the USB version. Unfortunately, the upgraded reader costs $20,000, and its hard to convince aircraft owners to foot the bill for that expense, as it provides no obvious "visible" benefit to them. On the other hand, the same owner might gladly drop a quarter million for an upgraded in-flight entertainment system with high speed internet.

Jim Barrett

Licensed Airframe & Powerplant Mechanic, Avionics, Electrical & Air Data Systems Specialist. Qualified on: Falcon 900, CRJ-200, Dornier 328-100, Hawker 850XP and 1000, Lear 35, 45, 55 and 60, Gulfstream IV and 550, Embraer 135, Beech Premiere and 400A, MD-80.

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Thank you all for your time and info. Now I have a clearer idea on how the process works. I appreciate all your input.

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Thank You so much for these interesting things smile.pngBut..... Are they crazy?? 20,000 dollars to change an obsolete floppy disk reader? And for what? An USB hub?? A mere data reader and loader..... The aircrafts business is really insane. I hope there are other arcane things to be changed together, if not it's only an incredible waste of money.....

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Something tells me $20,000 isn't a whole lot of money when it comes to the airlines. I can imagine fines in the business that are much more costly.

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Thank You so much for these interesting things smile.pngBut..... Are they crazy?? 20,000 dollars to change an obsolete floppy disk reader? And for what? An USB hub?? A mere data reader and loader..... The aircrafts business is really insane. I hope there are other arcane things to be changed together, if not it's only an incredible waste of money.....
Anything that is specifically intended to be installed in an aircraft is going to cost a lot of money.In some cases, the cost is clearly justifiable. For example, the HMU (hydromechanical control unit) on a jet engine. This is the device which controls and meters the flow of high pressure fuel to the injectors in the combustion chambers. It is an extremely complex device, machined to extraordinarily close tolerances, and it MUST work correctly, without fail, at all times, for obvious reasons.By contrast, the USB data reader is probably no different (internally) than an off-the-shelf unit you might buy for a personal computer for 20 or 30 dollars. In this case the high price comes mainly from product liability concerns, and meeting the standards required for official government certification of airworthiness, which requires an extensive series of quality control steps, and reams of documentation for every part of the manufacturing process.Any parts installed on an aircraft must, by law, be accompanied by an airworthiness certificate (known as a form 8130), issued either by the original manufacturer (for new parts), or by an agency certified to perform repair or overhaul of used parts.This applies even to the nuts, bolts, screws and other fasteners that hold the pieces of the aircraft together. If a mechanic encounters a stripped screw in an access panel, he can't just run over to Home Depot and buy a replacement - the replacement screw has to come from a supplier certified to manufacture replacement hardware for use in aircraft.These rules are a bit more relaxed in the case of private or homebuilt aircraft, but for any aircraft certificated to carry passengers in commercial service, parts are going to be expensive...

Jim Barrett

Licensed Airframe & Powerplant Mechanic, Avionics, Electrical & Air Data Systems Specialist. Qualified on: Falcon 900, CRJ-200, Dornier 328-100, Hawker 850XP and 1000, Lear 35, 45, 55 and 60, Gulfstream IV and 550, Embraer 135, Beech Premiere and 400A, MD-80.

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Thank You so much for these interesting things smile.pngBut..... Are they crazy?? 20,000 dollars to change an obsolete floppy disk reader? And for what? An USB hub?? A mere data reader and loader..... The aircrafts business is really insane. I hope there are other arcane things to be changed together, if not it's only an incredible waste of money.....
Welcome to the 'real' world of aviation. Every single part on an aircraft has to go through an approval process with the FAA, and that along with litigation, drives the costs through the roof. If you own your own plane you need deep pockets.Here is one example..... Cessna 172 door hinge pins.....one of which just broke on the plane I fly. The pin is about 2" long and maybe just under 1/8" wide. It holds the hinges that connect the door to the fus...$11 PER PIN X 4=$44 plus installation by an A+POverhauled carb....$800Replaced both mags....$2000Replace brakes...$500This list goes on

Jay

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