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Airbus plans floating black boxes


January 14, 2015

Published on Jan 14, 2015

 

New devices to help search teams follow over-sea crash

Airbus is planning to equip its long-haul aircraft with a new type of floating black box, making them easier to find following a crash at sea.

Travel Daily AsiaAccording to a Channel NewsAsia report, he AFP cited "aviation sources" as saying that the new devices will be automatically ejected from the aircraft and float when coming into contact with water.

They would also be fitted with tracking systems to allow search teams to locate them. Information from the flight data recorder would then allow investigators to find the exact coordinates of the aircraft at the time of the crash, helping with the search for the wreckage.

"The idea is to modify the black boxes so that each one records the flight details and [cockpit] conversations. One would be ejectable, the other not," one of the source told the news agency.

The technology has already been approved for military aircraft, has not yet been used in civil aircraft. But a recent spate of over-water crashes, including the Air France flight 447 disaster in 2009, the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in March 2014 and, most recently, the loss of AirAsia flight QZ8501, has prompted the call for new technology.

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