With fast-changing technology, safety mandates, and continued flight training, there is no doubt the aviation industry has become safer over the years. Even so, flight safety continues to be top priority. And safety programs that advocate continuous improvement of pilot performance are becoming a necessity for aircraft owner/operators.

What is FOQA?

“If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”

Flight Operations Quality Assurance, or FOQA, was introduced in the 1990s and designed to make commercial aviation safer. It allows commercial and military aviation including the FAA, to share de-identified aggregate information to help monitor trends in aircraft operations and address operational risk issues. For aircraft equipped with Flight Data Recorders (FDRs) and Quick Access Recorders (QARs), FOQA is now the standard for flight safety data analysis and training for commercial and military aviation.

FOQA Flight Data Analysis for Business and General Aviation

No longer limited to the commercial and military aviation sector, the business and general aviation communities can now take advantage of FOQA Flight Data Analysis, or Flight Data Monitoring (FDM), to improve pilot performance and safety. This intelligence program allows pilots the opportunity to evaluate their performance, spot trends and take corrective action before a serious incident can occur.

Avidyne’s IFD Series, ATLAS ™ and HELIOS ™ are the only FMS/GPS navigators on the market that have integrated flight data analysis capability. This allows for quantitative aggregated data that can be analyzed by the pilot and/or a flight organization of the owner/operator’s choice from any smart device or web browser.

Slide to view various applications.  Click an image to enlarge.

How does it work?

It’s as simple as flying the airplane, landing, and opening the app on your smart device.

The Avidyne IFD, ATLAS and HELIOS Flight Management Systems are equipped with attitude reference sensors, GPS, and the ability to record avionics data via the aircraft databus. Because Avidyne avionics include integrated WiFi and Bluetooth®, flight data is easily transferred to the AirSync service for post-processing and analysis through the AirSync Bridge, a small remote box kept in the aircraft with worldwide cellular connectivity and WiFi interface.

Once the aircraft is powered up, flight data is streamed wirelessly from the Avidyne IFD to the AirSync Bridge throughout all phases of flight. When the aircraft lands, the AirSync Bridge automatically detects shutdown and transmits the flight data over cellular to the AirSync Service where the pilot has access via mobile device using the app or web browser.

Avidyne’s Flight Data Intelligence provides an affordable FOQA solution for virtually any airframe not currently equipped with an FDR or QAR.

What kind of data is available?

FOQA Flight Data Intelligence provides in-depth data as it relates to flight Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) including pilot and aircraft performance and maintenance data. For example, stabilized approach criteria is very important to pilots who fly business aircraft, particularly turbine-class business aircraft. Pilots can evaluate how well they performed their mission from a debrief available through a third-party app installed on their smart phone or other portable devices within minutes of powering down. Through the app, the pilot selects the flight he or she would like to analyze. Upon selection, the pilot can view their performance data based on selected parameters. The pilot receives a performance “grade” (red/yellow/green) which is evaluated against the desired standard. The pilot can go deeper by clicking anywhere on the trace of the flight to view data such as glideslope, lateral and vertical deviations and more. It’s important to note the type of data available is dependent on the platform as well as other avionics installed in the aircraft.