Sunrise Aviation, a flight school and FBO at Ormond Beach Municipal Airport (OMN) in Central Florida, is installing the Wi-Flight flight data monitoring system in its fleet. Wi-Flight is an automated flight data capture and analysis system that also incorporates a cockpit voice recorder system.
Sunrise Aviation has already installed the system in one of its 40 training aircraft and will initially install Wi-Flight in three aircraft during an evaluation period. Later, Sunrise Aviation expects to install the Wi-Flight system in all of its single-engine aircraft, a fleet of more than 30 airplanes.
The Wi-Flight flight data recorder system is a combination cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder that sits atop the airplane glareshield and automatically records, uploads to the internet, and analyzes the data from each flight. Wi-Flight will email Sunrise Aviation whenever a flight exceeds school set safety parameters including low-level flights, flights in unauthorized airspace, or even hard landings. Wi-flight’s playback features will also allow flight instructors and students to review each flight visually through the use of Google Earth 3-D simulations. The audio features of Wi-Flight will permit playback not only of each radio transmission to air traffic control but will include all crew intercom communication and ambient noise as well.
Devon Dorato, Chief Pilot at Sunrise Aviation, stated that “the Wi-Flight flight data recorder will not only add an element of safety to our flight program, but will also enhance our flight training capabilities. “
Pascal Gosselin, president of General Aviation Safety Network and makers of the Wi-Flight system, commented that “We are delighted to have Sunrise Aviation evaluate Wi-Flight for fleet-wide deployment.” In addition, Gosselin mentioned that “Wi-Flight’s full automated flight capture, upload and analysis were tailored exactly for the type of mixed fleet operations of larger flight schools such as Sunrise.”
The Wi-flight system consists of a Neo mobile phone which serves as a wireless flight data recorder. That flight data recorder automatically records GPS position and accepts audio input for the entire flight. When the flight ends, the device uploads the data to the internet via the nearest Wi-Fi network for analysis by the Wi-Flight servers. Sunrise Aviation already has a wireless internet system in place and will optimize that system for better uploading.
Flights instructors, students and management will be able to view browser-based internet playbacks to “view” their flights using Goggle Earth 3-D that features both cockpit and chase plane simulated views. Streaming audio from the radio, intercom and ambient noise will be available with the simulated view. Instructors will be able to view how well the student executed each maneuver. Students can login at home and review each flight at their convenience. All students will be able to listen as often as they like to their own communications with air traffic controllers.