United Airlines Replacing iPods To Pilots As Electronic Flight Bags

United Airlines has announced that it is deploying over 11,000 iPads to all United and Continental pilots as EFBs to enhance efficiency, save fuel and improve safety and the iPads will come pre-installed with Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck app. The report notes that the iPads will streamline pilots’ work by eliminating the need for thumbing through sheafs of paper or waiting for pages to print and the iPads will reduce clutter on cramped flight decks and offer quick and also easy access to required data at all times……………….


United Continental Holdings Inc. announced that it is converting to paperless flight decks and deploying 11,000 iPads to all United and Continental pilots. The electronic flight bags (EFB) replace paper flight manuals and as a first for major network carriers, provide pilots with paperless aeronautical navigational charts through an iPad app. Distribution of iPads began earlier this month and all pilots will have them by year end. “The paperless flight deck represents the next generation of flying,” said Captain Fred Abbott, United’s senior vice president of flight operations. “The introduction of iPads ensures our pilots have essential and real-time information at their fingertips at all times throughout the flight.” The iPads are loaded with Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck, the industry’s premier app featuring interactive, data-driven enroute navigation information and worldwide geo-referenced terminal charts. The enhanced full-color, high-quality information display ensures the right information is displayed at the right time. “We are proud to partner with United Airlines on a project of this magnitude with Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck,” said Mark Van Tine, president and CEO of Jeppesen. “Jeppesen and United share a long and storied history that includes development of numerous innovations for the aviation industry. We look forward to continuing this partnership in integrating our digital mobile solutions that increase efficiency, reduce costs and optimize operations.”


Each iPad, which weighs less than 1.5 pounds, will replace approximately 38 pounds of paper operating manuals, navigation charts, reference handbooks, flight checklists, logbooks and weather information in a pilot’s flight bag. A conventional flight bag full of paper materials contains an average of 12,000 sheets of paper per pilot. The green benefits of moving to EFBs are two-fold—it significantly reduces paper use and printing and, in turn, reduces fuel consumption. The airline projects EFBs will save nearly 16 million sheets of paper a year which is equivalent to more than 1,900 trees not cut down. Saving 326,000 gallons of jet fuel a year reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 3,208 metric tons. With iPad, pilots are able to quickly and efficiently access reference material without having to thumb through thousands of sheets of paper and reduce clutter on the flight deck. United and Continental pilots‘ work will be streamlined as they can immediately download updates on iPad to their electronic flight materials, rather than waiting for paper updates to be printed and distributed. In addition, by eliminating bulky flight bags loaded with paper, pilots will have less to lift and carry through airports and onboard the aircraft, reducing the risk of injury while on duty. And the Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck app is available for free in the App Store and it includes the following features according to the iTunes page:

  • Data-driven and interactive enroute display
  • Display of your aircraft position on enroute display and airport diagrams
  • Standard airway manual text
  • Arrival, departure and approach procedures
  • Chart change notifications (terminal and enroute)
  • Full-color, high-quality, vector-based data with amazing details and zoom capabilities
  • Basic routing



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