updated 11:47 pm EDT, Mon September 10, 2012
Bag with 35 pounds of maps, manuals replaced by 1.5 pound iPad
The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has given approval for American Airlines to replace its flight manuals with iPad versions. The airline is the first commercial carrier to replace the satchels with the tablet, saving $1.2 million dollars annually in aviation fuel. The iPad remains the only tablet approved for aviation use by the FAA.
American's vice president Captain John Hale said in a statement that "with this approval from the FAA, we will be able to use iPad to fully realize the benefits of our Electronic Flight Bag program, including improving the work environment for our pilots, reducing our dependency on paper products and increasing fuel efficiency on our planes."
The program began quietly in 2011 when the FAA approved a trial of the tablet's use on a limited amount of flights. The entire 777 fleet will start using iPads, and s shift to the tablet for the rest of the airline is hoped to be approved by the end of the year. American Airlines wishes to cease paper revisions to manuals and navigation charts by the end of 2013.