News Item

iPad saves night flight

A crew on a night flight in the US had to turn to their iPads for primary navigation after a complete electrical system failure.

The pilot and his wife - on a night flight between Wyoming and Wisconsin in a Piper PA-24 Comanche single-engined 4-seat aircraft - were forced to turn to their iPads for primary navigation after a complete electrical system failure on 7 February..

They flew some 80 miles at night to Rapid City Regional Airport, South Dakota, using only altitude, airspeed and heading information from the aircraft instruments, with their iPads providing all navigation guidance. But, because of the electrical failure, they were unable to notify the airport of their approach or extend the landing gear.

It seems that the two used the the tablets to identify a runway at Rapid City that was not often used, and made a successful gear-up landing. Both walked away with no injuries.

iPads have many aviation apps available, and are frequently used as electronic flight bags in civil and military aircraft. But, although they carry GNSS receivers, iPads are generally not authorised for navigation in the cockpit other than for ground movement.

Details from the links below . .

  • 11 February 2015
  • GANG

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