FAA Grants American Airlines Permission to use iPads as Electronic Flight Bags

American Airlines is set to be the first major commercial carrier to use Apple’s iPad in all phases of flight just six months after receiving approval from the FAA to test iPads as replacements for traditional paper navigational charts.

The American Airlines Pilots Union (APA) and American Airlines collaborated with navigation and planning company Jeppesen to develop the iPad Electronic Flight Bag (EFB).

Pilots will use the iPad in place of existing 40-pound paper charts and manuals, enhancing efficiency and safety on the flight deck as well as saving an estimated $1.2 million in fuel costs.

The iPad has found a useful home in several areas of aviation for the same reason. For example, when a student begins flight training with ATP, they can also train using the same technology. ATP Students can download an App for their iPad which gives them access to courseware, charts and approach plates, and test prep that they will use in training.