As of January, Silverhawk has been granted initial approval to use Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) in place of paper charts. The initial approval comes with a six month trial period, where we still have to carry paper charts as backup, but we are one step closer to entering the digital age and gaining an extra few pounds of useful load!
The process to get here has taken nearly an entire year, multiple paperwork revisions, and several training sessions with each of our pilots. The end result – having charts for all of North America, and eventually all of our company manuals at the touch of a finger, without having to search through hundreds of pages to find the right approach plate.
We use two iPad minis per aircraft, loaded with the ForeFlight software that contains every VFR sectional, low and high enroute IFR charts, approach plates, and other nice features to have on standby whenever we need. Having access to our EFBs will greatly enhance our crew resource management and keep our pilots even more safe.
It definitely takes a lot of time and effort to get this approval, but if anyone is contemplating adding this, start reading AC 120-76C or reach out to us, and we can get you pointed in the right direction.