posted on Dec, 3 2004 @ 03:35 PM
Originally posted by RAB
I some times wonder the if the GPS and autopilot system can be updated from the ground. If you update the waypoints and the landing system radar
landing, information to the new ILS setting for the new airport. And lock the autopilot on ON!
If you are talking about reprogramming the course remotely, I don't think so. If we have any commercial pilots here, they may correct me. Software
updates obviously have to be done by the technicians physically on the AC.
I don't know about Airbus, but on Boeing aircraft, most of the newer planes can be flown semi-autonomously and autolanded. They are even capable of
taxiing to the gate (within limits). But the flight crew still has to punch in the destination on the FMC, and physically engage and disengage the
autopilot and autothrottle.
Speed and flight level changes are made by the flight crew en route. The autopilot then recalculates the flight parameters wrt eta, beginning of
descent, etc. During an autolanding, the flight crew still has to lower the gear, engage the thrust reversers and brake the aircraft manually, though
the autothrottle will pull back to flight idle at the B/D, and the autopilot will perform the touchdown.