American Airlines has now ditched heavy flight manuals and become the first major commercial carrier to introduce iPads to all of its cockpits in a move that is expected to save more than $1 million in fuel costs every year.
The company first began piloting (get it?) the scheme back in April, when it used Apple’s device alongside traditional paper manuals, which typically weigh around 35 pounds. Now those manuals have been phased out completely in favor of digital versions.
iPads are now fitted inside American’s Boeing 777, 767, 757, 737, and MD-80 aircraft. Not only are they significantly lighter than the paper flight manuals at under two pounds, but they also offers plenty of advantages, such as quicker updates.
“Our Electronic Flight Bag program has a significant positive environmental and cost-savings impact,” said David Campbell, American’s Vice President of Safety and Operations Performance. “In fact, removing the kitbag from all of our planes saves a minimum of 400,000 gallons and $1.2 million of fuel annually based on current fuel prices.”
“Additionally, each of the more than 8,000 iPads we have deployed to date replaces more than 3,000 pages of paper previously carried by every active pilot and instructor,” Campbell continued. “Altogether, 24 million pages of paper documents have been eliminated.”
American also announced that beginning July 10, American Eagle Airlines pilots will also have the opportunity to replace traditional flight manuals with iPads, making it one of the first regional carriers to do so.