Flying through cyber space

The airline carrier, United Airlines, is joining the technological revolution by throwing the manual out the window and by giving its pilots 11,000 iPads.

The airline’s upgrading from large, cumbersome flight manuals to the lightweight and slim-line iPads in a bid to save weight and therefore money, with all the flight manual information being stored directly onto the iPad

The iPad weighs just 0.7kg compared to the 17kg flight manual. United Airlines have calculated the conversion will save them 1.5 million litres of fuel and 16 million sheets of paper a year, in-turn saving them millions of dollars.

Captain Fred Abbott, United Airlines senior vice-president of flight operations, said: "The paperless flight deck represents the next generation of flying.

"The introduction of iPads ensures our pilots have essential and real-time information at their fingertips at all times throughout the flight."

United Airline is one of the world’s largest airlines based in the USA and it is expected that the iPads will adopted by umbrella company United Continental Holdings.

United Airlines are the second major carrier to adopt the iPad as a key pilot flight aid in the USA after Alaska Airlines, who brought in the ipads in May.

Alaska Airlines stated: “With iPad, pilots are able to quickly and efficiently access reference material without having to thumb through thousands of sheets of paper and reduce clutter on the flight deck.”