White Papers

Simplified Replacement of Older Flight Data Recorders to Meet New Regulations and Data Collecting Needs

October 25, 2019 | BY: Steve Leaper

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For decades, Flight Data Recorders (FDR) have helped accident investigators determine the cause of accidents. Throughout their history, FDRs have changed to meet new regulations that better aid FDR survivability, locatability, and to provide more information to investigators and authorities that can result in changes to aircraft construction or operations.

Operators of aircraft may find they need to upgrade existing FDRs for a variety of reasons including meeting new regulations, obsolescence issues, reducing size, weight, or power (SWaP), or to gather additional data. Whatever the reason, a key concern will be how best to replace the existing FDR as quickly and easily as possible.

Flight data Recorder

                                            Figure 1: Modern FDRs provide a host of benefits over older models

The procedures that must be followed in order to change one FDR for another depend on the recorders and the needs of the aircraft. This document discusses why one may decide to upgrade FDRs and uses a specific case to discuss the benefits of modern FDRs and the replacement procedures. While this is specific to certain recorders, the principles and steps are similar for any other FDR combination.

Download the Simplified Replacement of Older Flight Data Recorders White Paper to learn more about:

  • FDR regulations
  • Difficulties encountered changing recorders
  • Upgrading from Curtiss-Wright’s MPFR to Fortress

Author’s Biography

Steve Leaper

Product and Avionics Bids Manager

Steve Leaper works for Curtiss-Wright in the role of product manager for flight recorders and bids manager. He joined Curtiss-Wright in 1986, initially working with tape based voice and flight data recorders. Steve has spent virtually all of his career working with the flight recorder product range, with extensive knowledge of the product range and requirements. Steve has held the positions of engineer, programme manager and had key account management responsibility for Leonardo Helicopters, BAE Systems, and Collins Technologies (formerly Goodrich) amongst others whilst also representing Curtiss-Wright at international committees such as ARINC and EUROCAE.

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