Online service using Microsoft Azure cloud as a secure backup system for electronic navigation maps

Raunheim, Germany | August 3, 2017– Smooth flight operations are a top priority for airlines. Long delays or cancellations can result in high costs and damage to an airline’s image. Since pilots can not take off without navigation maps, backup solutions are essential to flight operations in case of a system failure. With its new cloud-based Lido/RouteManual Backup solution, Lufthansa Systems is offering a reliable and flexible online service as a digital backup for its electronic navigation maps.

Despite the popular trend towards a paperless flight deck, many airlines are still using paper maps as backup copies. But this negates some of the advantages of digital solutions because the paper maps still have to be printed out, picked up and carried onto the aircraft. “With Lido/RouteManual Backup, this administrative effort is a thing of the past. The new web-based solution enables fast, secure access to customized information – from anywhere, on any device,” said Igor Dimnik, Director Strategy and Market Development Lido/Navigation at Lufthansa Systems. “Pilots just need a functioning Internet connection to access the backup copy before a flight. They can view the maps in a browser or download them as PDF files. This forward-looking digital backup solution is Lufthansa Systems’ response to strong demand in the market.”

With digital solutions, there is always a certain risk of system failure. This is not due solely to the growing danger of cyberattacks. A minor software error, an operating system update that doesn’t support certain functions, a server outage or simply a malfunctioning device – there are many potential reasons for a temporary inability to access digital maps. For all of these cases, Lido/RouteManual Backup provides a reliable backup copy so that the aircraft can take off anyway.

Lido/eRouteManual complies with the rules of international aviation authorities. The online platform includes the same worldwide data as the map solution, and customer-specific information can be integrated as well. The backup system runs on Microsoft’s Azure cloud and is therefore independent of the infrastructure that Lufthansa Systems provides for its navigation apps. If there is a fault in the digital map solution or a server, the necessary data can still be accessed in a browser.

Airlines can choose between two different models of the Lido/RouteManual Backup solution. In single-user mode, there is one responsible administrator at the airline who has access to the online platform and can retrieve the required information if necessary and send it to the pilot. Alternatively, temporary access can be granted using a link and password. If an airline opts for multi-user mode, each pilot will have individual access to the solution. This gives the pilots control over their own updates and data, and they can access the platform quickly and directly if need be. In both cases, users can easily select the relevant destinations, view the maps in a browser or download them as interactive PDFs, store the data and even print it out if necessary.

  • Lufthansa Systems releases a new generation of its navigation app for iOS

Raunheim, Germany | September 6, 2016– Lufthansa Systems today announced the release of Lido/mPilot 2.0, a comprehensive update to its successful navigation app for the iPad. The new-generation app features a more modern design, faster loading times, better performance and a Bluetooth connection to flight deck avionics systems. Existing customers can download Lido/mPilot 2.0 from the App Store and update their systems from September 2016.

“The trend toward mobile solutions for a paperless flight deck and greater flexibility for pilots and airlines shows no sign of slowing down,” said Igor Dimnik, Director Products at Lufthansa Systems. “With our new Lido/mPilot 2.0 app, we are taking another step in the direction of connectivity on the flight deck. Our outstanding cooperation with industry partners enables us to offer airlines comprehensive, integrated solutions.”

Lufthansa Systems worked with UTC Aerospace Systems and their products to turn an iPad installed with Lido/mPilot 2.0 into a full-fledged Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) system. Using a UTC Aerospace Systems Tablet Interface Module®, which has a Bluetooth connection, the iPad is linked to the company’s Aircraft Interface Device (AID) which enables data management. This will provide access to relevant avionics data such as GPS information, and the aircraft’s speed and heading. Together the hardware and software will facilitate navigation and contribute to improved situational awareness for pilots.

Lido/mPilot 2.0 also reduces the workload for pilots. Before a flight, one of the pilots selects the airport maps and route and stores them on his or her device. Thanks to a new import function, the other pilot can then import this data directly to his own iPad without having to repeat the procedure. This simplifies the administrative processes and frees up pilots for more important tasks.

The user interface was completely overhauled for the update in accordance with Google’s Material Design principles. This gives users the benefit of a more modern and intuitive app design with a familiar, uniform look which can be used across all platforms. This design concept will also be applied to the Windows-based Lido/eRouteManual app very soon. The new Lido/mPilot 2.0 additionally offers faster, better performance and much shorter start-up loading times.

Around 70 airlines have already opted for the mobile Lido/mPilot navigation solution since the app was launched in early 2015. The modular app offers features such as airport charts, a dynamically generated enroute map and a document management and distribution system that enables pilots to access documents and messages both at home and on the move. A status overview with intuitive icons guarantees a clear flow of information.

  • 2015 EFB Forum: Lufthansa Systems presents new Lido/mPilot iPad app

Kelsterbach | June 3, 2015– Lufthansa Systems today announced that it will present its new Lido/mPilot app as well as the latest features of its Lido/eRouteManual navigation solution and Lido/AMM airport moving map at this year’s Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) Users Forum, which takes place in Denver from June 2-4, 2015.

Lido/mPilot is an iPad-based, all-in-one navigation solution from Lufthansa Systems. It includes terminal maps, a dynamically generated, seamless enroute chart and a system for managing and distributing documents. The modular app also offers a variety of additional features that improve flight deck workflow efficiency. In Denver, Lufthansa Systems and UTC Aerospace Systems will present an iOS-based prototype which integrates UTC Aerospace Systems’ new Tablet Interface Module TIM™ hardware into the Lido/mPilot application. This integration makes it possible to connect iPads via Bluetooth (or cable) so that pilots can quickly and easily exchange documents and information.

“The trend shows that airlines are increasingly using tablets in an EFB environment. Here in Denver we are presenting the corresponding applications and features – both for iPads and for Windows-based tablets,” said Igor Dimnik, Head of Product Management Flight Deck Solutions. “As connectivity in the cockpit will play an ever greater role in the future, exchanging information and integrating the relevant data – such as weather information – will happen even faster.”

The Windows-based Lido/eRouteManual navigation solution, which was originally developed for permanently installed devices, has also been optimized for tablet use by the airline IT specialist. Microsoft and Lufthansa Systems are closely cooperating in this context. The two companies are strategically aligned in regards to the further development of the Lido/eRouteManual charting application and its usability on Windows tablets. One focal point here is the future integration of the Windows 10 platform capabilities. Lido/eRouteManual provides electronic navigation charts for takeoff and landing procedures as well as airport and route charts that contain all relevant route information.

In addition to the product presentations at the Lufthansa Systems stand (number 7), experts from Lufthansa Systems will give a talk on Wednesday, June 3, 2015, about a new feature for displaying previously flown routes on navigation charts. This should give pilots a decision-making basis for optimal flight preparation.

The EFB Forum is one of the most important events in the EFB industry, where providers and aircraft manufacturers demonstrate their latest developments and discuss the technical and operational trends surrounding the Electronic Flight Bag with airline representatives.

  • New system will be an option on Airbus A320 and A330 aircraft families

Cedar Rapids, Iowa | May 4, 2015–Rockwell Collins has been selected by Airbus to provide the Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) interface and communication unit (EICU) for Airbus A320 and A330 aircraft families. The optional system for airlines, exclusively provided by Rockwell Collins, will be available and certified next year.

The EICU, a lightweight, compact unit that is part of Rockwell Collins’ Secure Server Router product portfolio, leverages proven technology from the onboard information management system that the company already supplies for other Airbus aircraft types. It securely connects to portable and factory-installed EFBs in the cockpit via wireless or wired connections.

The system’s embedded router enables the EFB to interconnect with select onboard and external networks, including the avionics, maintenance information, airline operating centers, connecting gates and the cabin. This technology finds the most cost-effective communication channel available, whether it is cellular, WiFi, SATCOM or ACARS, for connecting the EFB to external networks. The unit also features a virtual digital aircraft condition monitoring system (ACMS) recorder (VDAR) that leverages the ground cellular/WiFi connectivity to automatically download quick access recorder (QAR) files to airline ground servers.

“The EICU is a another step in the progression of our information management solutions strategy and an extension of the success we’ve had with Airbus on other aircraft types,” said Greg Irmen, vice president and general manager, Flight Controls and Information Systems for Rockwell Collins. “This new EFB solution for A320s and A330s is central to onboard and off-aircraft networks. It enables pilots to quickly and efficiently connect with essential decision-making tools to make flight operations safer and more efficient.”

The EICU will also be flexible enough to accommodate future networking technologies that may become available.

El Segundo, CA | November 20, 2013–  

A fifth generation Aircraft Wireless LAN Unit (AWLU) from Teledyne Controls, the aircraft data and information management business, has been successfully certified by Boeing as a Buyer Furnished Equipment (BFE) option for installation on all new 777 production aircraft.

The AWLU enables the secure, reliable and cost-effective transfer of data to and from the aircraft. In this 777 application, the AWLU provides the wireless transfer of Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) and/or Onboard Networking System (ONS) applications data.

The new AWLU is a compact, lightweight and cost‐effective networking solution that provides high-speed ground based off‐board wireless connectivity for any systems on‐board the aircraft, using 3G/4G cellular and optional WiFi technology. It is designed to be easily upgradeable to newer cellular standards as they become available.

“The AWLU provides a critical component of any airlines e-enabled aircraft strategy,” said Larry Levine, Vice-President of Marketing and Sales at Teledyne Controls.  “Using cellular and/or 802.11 WiFi technologies, the AWLU provides a secure, reliable and cost-effective link to connect the aircraft to the airline network to support current and future applications as they are developed.

Teledyne’s wireless solutions include the Wireless GroundLink® system (WGL) and the fifth-generation AWLU . Previous generations of these products have been flying in commercial service for over a decade and have given Teledyne a wealth of experience in the wireless transmission of data for the airline industry.  Additionally, Teledyne has recently signed a Technical Services Agreement (TSA) with Boeing to develop and certify in 2014 its Terminal Cellular System (TCS) for the Boeing 787, bringing communications capability similar to the AWLU to that airplane model.

  • Portuguese airline continues successful use of Navtech iCharts

Toronto,Canada | September 24, 2013– Navtech Inc., a leader in flight operations software and services, is pleased to congratulate customer, euroAtlantic Airways, for their extended Class 2 Type B EFB approval from EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency). This is one of the first EASA certifications for an airline operating an all Boeing aircraft fleet and utilizing Apple iPad hardware. The non-scheduled international airline, operating in diverse routes in the US, Canada, Caribbean, Central and South Americas, Africa, Middle East and beyond, will operate Navtech iCharts via iPads across their entire fleet. euroAtlantic Airways is also a subscriber to Navtech’s Navigation Data for the GE US and Honeywell FMS.

“We are always pleased to be a part of innovative technology solutions that give our customers cost savings, enhanced safety and overall increased operational efficiency,” said Mr. Heath Bowden, Product Director – Charts & EFB at Navtech. “euroAtlantic has had great success in removing paper from their cockpits.”

euroAtlantic Airways was a new customer to Navtech in 2012, signing two agreements for services within six months and becoming an ally for Navtech. “We have a very good, professional relationship with Navtech and we are happy to help bring them more attention through our story,” said euroAtlantic Airways Chief Pilot, Mario Alvim. “We are very pleased with our Navtech solution.”

Navtech iCharts is an application that brings Navtech electronic charts to your iPad. This allows the iPad to be used as a Class 1 EFB, or with regulatory and operational approval, as a Class 2 Type B device. Navtech has worked with customers, like euroAtlantic Airways, to achieve operational approval of the iPad as a Class 2 device. Navtech’s family of state-of-the-art aeronautical charts products have been developed using research from Human Factor Specialists and by gathering data from, and working closely with pilots who have years of experience using aeronautical charts. Each chart includes enhanced symbology and communication features. Navtech’s electronic chart viewing application, Navtech eCharts, has been used by Navtech’s customers for over ten years. Continued product enhancements will form the infrastructure for Navtech to easily support all Classes of EFB and all devices from tablets to installed avionics.

– Latest technology simplifies cockpit processes and lowers costs

Kelsterbach, Germany | December 11, 2012– Lufthansa Systems today announced that Lufthansa Passage pilots will be using a more advanced version of its Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) in the cockpit in the future. This solution from Lufthansa Systems will give the pilots continual access to updated electronic navigation charts, technical log books and operating manuals. The EFB reduces the amount of paper on board and saves weight while also cutting printing and logistics costs and protecting the environment. The nearly paperless cockpit is therefore an important step towards efficient, environmentally conscious flight operations.

Lufthansa will continue to use the EFB as a so-called Class 2 solution. “The decision for the further development of the EFB with Lufthansa Systems is a great sign of confidence and a credit to our development work in the field of Flight Deck Solutions,” said Claus Rohde, SVP Key Account Management Lufthansa Passage at Lufthansa Systems. “Together, we will provide Lufthansa pilots with an innovative tool which enables them to access up-to-date information even more quickly and flexibly.”

In addition to the electronic navigation charts of the Lido/eRouteManual, the EFB for Lufthansa encompasses an electronic briefing packet known as the Electronic Flight Folder that contains all data required for flight operations, as well as a document management system. This complex software also handles connections between applications on board and on the ground, automatic updates and data synchronization. It optimizes the information process in the cockpit, easing the crew’s work load and improving flight safety. Furthermore, the solution reduces logistics and other costs and helps conserve the environment by eliminating the need to print and regularly distribute the paper charts.

Brea, CA (November 16, 2009) – For the third consecutive year, The IMS Company, a diverse technology solutions provider focusing on communications and entertainment solutions in the aerospace, government and travel markets, has been named to the list of “100 fastest-growing private companies” in tech-heavy Orange County, California, by the Orange County Business Journal (OCBJ), IMS chairman and CEO Joseph Renton has announced.

“In view of the overall economic downturn, and the severity of the inflight entertainment and communications sector in particular, we are pleased to continue being among Orange County’s fastest-growing,” said Renton.
Earlier this year, IMS expanded its operations with the acquisition of FlightDeck Resources, a leading provider of Electronic Flight Bag solutions to commercial airlines, corporate aviation, air cargo and aircraft fleet operations worldwide. With that acquisition, IMS created “IMS FlightDeck” as an operating division along with IMS Engineering and IMS Entertainment, said Renton.

The company expanded its In Flight Entertainment and Communications (IFEC) product offerings in 2009 with the announcement at the WAEA Conference and Exhibition in Palm Springs, California, of a light-weight, low-cost embedded IFEC system that “leaves the head-end-centric architecture behind” says Renton. Called RAVE™, this system is architected so that all content, applications and playback capabilities reside at each seat rather than at the head-end.

IMS also recently announced a new generation of embedded data loaders utilizing solid state technology that offer significantly faster content load speeds, increased storage capacity, and the ability to interface with multiple IFE systems. “Migration from the Removable Hard Disk Drive (HDD) to Solid State (SD) media is definitely paradigm-changing,” says Renton.

IMS continues to be a key engineering solutions provider on complex programs such as Joint Tactical Radio Systems (JTRS), On Board Network Services program, for 787 and 747-8 aircraft and highly specialized engineering for numerous unmanned vehicle platforms.

Founded in 1996, The IMS Company is an entertainment and communications solutions provider in the travel industry and a systems and software solutions provider to the aerospace industry and the military. Organized into three business units, IMS serves more than twenty commercial airlines with portable entertainment, wireless communications, and content management services via IMS Entertainment. Via IMS Engineering, the company provides advanced systems and software engineering support in the development and deployment of the latest in inflight entertainment, cabin avionics, and media distribution systems, as well as engineering services and software development services to unmanned vehicles and software-defined radios. The recent acquisition of Flight Deck Resources resulted in the creation of a third unit, IMS Flight Deck, which provides Electronic Flight Bag and other solutions for the flight deck. IMS has expanded into the provisioning of content services and hardware solutions for business aviation, rental car, rail passenger, and related markets reaching the traveling public.

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To be known as “IMS Flight Deck”, the new division provides Electronic Flight Bag solutions

Brea, CA (April 22, 2009)—The IMS Company, an entertainment and communications solutions provider to inflight entertainment , aerospace and travel industry markets, has announced the acquisition of Flight Deck Resources (FDR), a leading provider of Electronic Flight Bag solutions to commercial airlines, corporate aviation, air cargo, general aviation and aircraft fleet operators worldwide.

FDR, which will now be known as IMS Flight Deck, will join IMS Entertainment and IMS Engineering as a division within The IMS Company, according to IMS chairman and CEO Joseph Renton.

“As a result of the acquisition, we have synergistically expanded our product reach and will now have the ability sell products and services to our customers not only in the cabin of the aircraft but also in the flight deck,” said Renton. “It is our ongoing strategy to find ways to prudently grow our business and we see the FDR acquisition as one of those ways.”

A number of FDR’s executives and employees joined IMS Flight Deck and have moved into IMS’ facilities in Brea, California, thus ensuring a smooth and efficient transition for current customers. “As a turnkey Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) solutions provider, FDR—now IMS Flight Deck—is a single source for EFB hardware, software, mounting, and certification,” said Renton. The acquisition is part of a strategic initiative to provide an integrated package of products and services that are comprehensive and complementary, Renton commented.

IMS provides portable entertainment solutions, applications, wireless communications, cabin avionics, media distribution systems, content delivery network services, content and data-loading solutions, and advanced systems and software engineering services, according to Renton. “The ability to provide a comprehensive solution set for the flight crew and the flight deck of the aircraft further demonstrates our commitment to a robust and compelling set of aircraft solutions,” he said.

IMS Flight Deck offers the SkyTab Electronic Flight Bag product line in addition to its proprietary EFB software applications. These Flight Deck Management Systems (all single piece Class 1 and Class 2 portable EFBs under FAA AC-120-76A) are capable of hosting and displaying navigational charts, digital terminal procedures charts, GPS data, company policies, documents, aircraft manuals, and preflight planning applications. They also perform exceedingly complex functions such as performance calculations, satellite communications, display of real-time weather information, and airport moving map applications, said Renton.

Despite the current economic environment, The IMS Company, the leading provider of inflight portable entertainment solutions, has continued to operate on sound footing, according to Renton. Earlier this month IMS announced a large portables sale and three year support agreement to supply portable media players (PMPs), ground-based delivery infrastructure, and recurring content management services for Kuwait Airways, and another sale for PMPs and content management services to Air Gabon.

About The IMS Company: Founded in 1996, The IMS Company is an entertainment and communications solutions provider in the travel industry and a systems and software solutions provider to the aerospace industry and the military. IMS serves more than twenty commercial airlines with portable entertainment, wireless communications, and content management services, as well as the provision of advanced systems and software engineering support in the development and deployment of the latest in inflight entertainment, cabin avionics, and media distribution systems. IMS also provides engineering services and software development services to unmanned vehicles and software-defined radios. IMS has expanded into the provisioning of content services and hardware solutions for business aviation, rental car, rail passenger, and related markets reaching the traveling public. In 2008, IMS was named the 14th fastest-growing privately-held company in technology-heavy Orange County, California by the Orange County Business Journal, moving up from 24th fastest-growing in the 2007 survey.

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Despite the economic downturn, The IMS Company is continuing a pattern of strategic growth initiatives with this week’s announcement that IMS has acquired Flight Deck Resources, a leading provider of turnkey Electronic Flight Bag solutions. As IMS chairman Joe Renton points out, this strategic acquisition enables IMS to “sell products and services to our customers not only in the back of the aircraft but also in the front of the aircraft.” This extends IMS’ product reach from passenger services to flight crew services, an area in which IMS has previously offered only applications and not a full suite of solutions, and increases IMS’ presence in the business aviation and air cargo markets.

Upon absorption into the IMS infrastructure, Flight Deck Resources becomes “IMS Flight Deck”, an operating division of The IMS Company alongside IMS Entertainment and IMS Engineering. “The acquisition is part of a strategic initiative to provide an integrated package of products and services that are synergistic and complementary,” Joe Renton told IFEXpress.

IMS Flightdeck will now offer the SkyTab Electronic Flight Bag product line. These FlightDeck Management Systems are all single piece Class 1 and Class 2 portable EFBs under FAA-AC-120-76A, and are capable of hosting and displaying digital terminal procedural charts, GPS data, company policies, and preflight planning applications, as well as exceedingly complex functions such as performance calculations and display of real-time weather info.

Coming in the same month as its announcements of a large portables sale to Kuwait Airways, that included a three-year support deal and recurring content management services, as well as a portables sale to Air Gabon, IMS still maintains it primacy in the portables space, and is demonstrating an aggressive and strategic approach to the business, even while the broader market feels the downward pressure. “It is our perpetual intention to continue to find strategically sound and prudent ways to grow our business and extend our product reach,” Renton told IFEXpress. “This acquisition is one of them.”