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Understanding Normal and Atypical Operations through Analysis of Flight Data

By Thomas R. Chidester


Over the past several years, airlines have initiated or participated in a number of safety data programs. Each involves collection of voluntary safety reports or the monitoring of flight data. These initiatives grew from recognition that mitigating safety risks requires monitoring a variety of data streams – reports, observations, and flight data. They have spawned technologies within air carriers, including Airline Safety Action Programs (ASAP), Line Operational Safety Audits (LOSA), improved analysis of training and checking data through the Advanced Qualification Program (AQP), and Flight Operational Quality Assurance (FOQA) programs. NASA has supported development of an Aviation Performance Measuring System (APMS) to facilitate development of advanced concepts and prototype software for the analysis of flight data, in order to further FOQA programs toward the proactive management of safety risk. This paper will discuss the functions that can be served by flight data analysis, describe the development of tools for those functions, and review applications of these tools which advance knowledge gained from flight data. Sophisticated and labor-efficient processing and analysis of flight data will play a key role i

Year: 2009
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