TechBits: electronics in the air (10.02.13) - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

TechBits: electronics in the air (10.02.13)

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BIRMINGHAM - AL -

The FAA is considering new rules for electronics on airplanes- and there are a few issues behind new recommendations that people be allowed to keep their gadgets on during takeoff and landing.

Tests on how electronics affect airplane systems were done in 2006- with electronics different form the ones most people use now.  How newer versions of wireless standards could affect planes hasn't yet been tested.

There have been claims that radio signals from electronic devices can interfere with airplane electronics- but pilots and engineers dispute those claims.  Airplane instruments use dedicated frequencies.

Use of electronic devices by airplane crews can also be a factor.  Many pilots are going to flight manuals on tablet computers, instead of older, bulkier paper versions.

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