Flexjet and GE partner to launch wireless flight data monitoring
Cleveland, OH – Flexjet has announced a major upgrade and expansion to its flight data monitoring capabilities. In partnership with GE Aviation, Flexjet’s entire US-based fleet will transmit flight data wirelessly and instantly upon touchdown. This initiative will strengthen the company’s safety management system and makes Flexjet the only US-based fractional provider to apply this cutting-edge technology fleet-wide.
The flight operations quality assurance (FOQA), quick access recorders (QARs) and cellular data services were created by GE Aviation, which uses the Industrial Internet to provide business intelligence and actionable insight to continuously improve an airline’s overall level of safety. Operators that adopt FOQA are better able to identify and eliminate potential safety hazards in flight operations.
Flexjet’s long-range large-cabin aircraft always have been equipped with data recorders. Prior to this advancement, data from those recorders was collected manually by a trained technician, analysed and applied to safety protocol.
This new program collects data across the entire Flexjet fleet of aircraft immediately after each touchdown, enabling real-time analysis by Flexjet’s new data analyst team, which was trained by GE. The results will inform future safety protocol, pilot training and will bolster the company’s already robust and award-winning maintenance program.
The process to integrate this into Flexjet’s overall safety management system (SMS) has been ongoing long before the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) added it to its list of the Top 10 Most Wanted Transportation Safety Improvements for 2017-18. In addition, this type of flight data management system goes above and beyond FAA requirements.
“We were able to customize the QAR firmware to include Flexjet-specific flight events by using the roughly 4.5 million data points collected per wireless transmission that the equipment sends immediately after landing of every flight,” said Flexjet Chief Safety Officer Todd Anguish, who also has worked as a pilot, a flight instructor and an Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) Mechanic for nearly 27 years.
“The comprehensive data we can gather instantly allows us to ensure safer operation of our fleet with real-time Flight Data Monitoring to address any potential flight safety concerns immediately,” added Anguish.
“By combining GE’s experience in flight safety analysis and flight analytics with wireless mini-QAR technology from our Avionica joint venture, we will help Flexjet to advance its fleet with the latest flight safety analysis techniques in the airline environment,” said John Mansfield, chief digital officer for GE Aviation.
This is the largest implementation of GE’s wireless flight data management system to date.