'Glass' Boxes Proposed for Aircraft

DENTON, Texas, July 20 (UPI) — Aircraft black boxes, the flight data recorders and cockpit voice recorders, should be replaced with real-time data transmission systems, a U.S. researcher has proposed.

University of North Texas computer scientist Krishna M. Kavi says the boxes can be damaged or difficult to recover and can only store limited amounts of data, IEEE Spectrum Magazine reported Monday.


A real-time data system, Kavi argues, would guarantee access to critical information not only at the time of an aircraft accident but for years to come so safety experts could study and predict patterns.

Because the data would be available to all safety analysts, making the system transparent, Kavi calls his system a “glass box.”

Aircraft would kept in touch and transmit data to computing systems directly while over land and when flying over oceans could transmit to satellite connections, he said.

With vast amounts of data at their fingertips, safety experts could identify many flight problems that now escape notice and establish procedures to handle them, Kavi said.

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