February 2015 Issue

Gadget Flight Rules 2.0

Gadgets like iPads and associated software always enhance safety in the cockpit, except when they don’t.

Nearly two years have passed since Aviation Safety introduced the concept of gadget flight rules (GFR) in the December 2013 issue. The original article examined using non-certified gadgets—personal electronic devices running appropriate software—to salvage a flight when your certified instruments fail. The conclusion was, yes, gadgets can provide backup, but the user must understand the novel ways they can help or hinder flight safety. Put another way, gadgets are only as good as our ability to use them; a safe pilot must know and understand their capabilities and limitations as well.

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