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Old 02-19-2021, 09:48 AM   #11  
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Originally Posted by luke3 View Post
If anything in the corporate world I'm seeing insurance crack down on single pilot ops. Those premiums have been going through the roof. And this is for aircraft already certified as single pilot. I expect the same thing to happen in the airline world if that ever becomes an option for them.
I've been told that there is at least one major insurance company currently researching how to underwrite single pilot and autonomous cargo aircraft.
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Old 02-19-2021, 10:07 AM   #12  
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You mean the same employer that declined additional 747-8s at discount bargain prices in favor of “new” MD11s that were practically given to us. Totally agree with your point. Our company is beyond frugal and would prefer to fly our current fleet until the wings fall off. The delta for return on investment between buying a two pilot used 76 conversion and a brand new single pilot factory freighter is sufficient to make the additional investment required unattractive. I suspect the ACMI companies have similar time horizons in mind when buying aircraft.

Single pilot ops is a red herring meant to force pilot unions to waste money and political capital. The next logical step from two pilot aircraft are autonomous aircraft. Eliminating an entire category of labor is attractive. However, the political and societal hurdles are significant. Not worried about it.
Yup, you know the people I’m referring to. 😂😂
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Old 02-19-2021, 10:32 AM   #13  
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I've received a lot of comments on my first post, but consider this. Do you remember when we used floppy disks, and the modems were dial up? Hmm? Now my home runs on blue tooth. Moore's law states, the number of transistors on a microchip doubles every 2 years. I just bought the Macbook Air with the M1 chip that has 16 billion (no, billion is not a typo) transistors on the chip. And it doesn't need a cooling fan .

Its all ball bearings nowadays.
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Old 02-20-2021, 11:07 PM   #14  
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It’s a Big Push, never discount technology and how $ pushes other barriers that impede so called progress/cost savings.
Must remain vigilant it can happen whether it’s within 10 years or 30. No one here most likely has their fingers on these programs or insurance companies yet we have significant skin in the game, literally 50%.....

Flip your viewpoint 180, focus is not on small feeder aircraft or the Germanwings argument, etc., but the ease of pseudo single pilot ops on board long haul cargo being first. Keep 2 pilots up front, 1 Flyer 1 Sleeper and Autobot on the right. Don’t need 4 anymore that’s is a 50% reduction. Nothing I want, but that is what I would do. Nice Comfy Recliner Left Seater and your glorified cot behind it. Hal 2000 sitting right. Not “Inconceivable” at all is it. 797 canceled or not, it was in the schematics/plan so it was on its way. Virus may have delayed it or accelerated other ventures, no one really knows. Just enjoying my chair before the music starts playing. Music will play someday, chair will be pulled - that is undeniable
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Old 02-21-2021, 01:07 AM   #15  
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I've received a lot of comments on my first post, but consider this. Do you remember when we used floppy disks, and the modems were dial up? Hmm? Now my home runs on blue tooth. Moore's law states, the number of transistors on a microchip doubles every 2 years. I just bought the Macbook Air with the M1 chip that has 16 billion (no, billion is not a typo) transistors on the chip. And it doesn't need a cooling fan. The DOD is already testing dog flights with one aircraft using AI. So far AI is winning The bottom line, technology is running a warp speed. And costs are coming down. GA aircraft now come with avionics that surpasses many commercial aircraft. Insurance, it may be high at first but as the technology progresses it will come down. The two downsides are public acceptance and on the regulatory front, eventually a pilot will have to leave the seat for bodily functions.
Cool story.

So what’s your background? Engineering, Data Science, CS with a specialty in AI?
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Old 02-21-2021, 08:13 PM   #16  
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You mean the same employer that declined additional 747-8s at discount bargain prices in favor of “new” MD11s that were practically given to us. Totally agree with your point. Our company is beyond frugal and would prefer to fly our current fleet until the wings fall off. The delta for return on investment between buying a two pilot used 76 conversion and a brand new single pilot factory freighter is sufficient to make the additional investment required unattractive. I suspect the ACMI companies have similar time horizons in mind when buying aircraft.

Single pilot ops is a red herring meant to force pilot unions to waste money and political capital. The next logical step from two pilot aircraft are autonomous aircraft. Eliminating an entire category of labor is attractive. However, the political and societal hurdles are significant. Not worried about it.
Yes sir! This is a ploy by management to get labor chasing their tail on something that is way far off on the horizon. Does anyone find FedEx’s timing impeccable on this issue 3 months prior to bargaining openers?
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Old 02-22-2021, 06:58 AM   #17  
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Cool story.

So what’s your background? Engineering, Data Science, CS with a specialty in AI?
Anybody who throws out Moore's law in relation to AI or aircraft automation has zero credibility. That's just sound bites from Newsweek, etc.
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Old 02-22-2021, 06:59 AM   #18  
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Nothing much to see here, AMFLIGHT's been doing it for years...


https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EdFoOHAUYAE4au2.jpg
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Old 02-22-2021, 07:08 AM   #19  
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Yes sir! This is a ploy by management to get labor chasing their tail on something that is way far off on the horizon. Does anyone find FedEx’s timing impeccable on this issue 3 months prior to bargaining openers?
Probably. It's a huge leap for large jets, and an incredibly vast leap for no-pilot ops. The real-world aviation ecosystem isn't built for that.

Might be concerned a bit if they actually implement autonomous road vehicles... that don't require a safety observer, and don't routinely kill people by running into large objects at full speed, a la Tesla.

And if they rush it, they'll end up with high-visibility accidents which will just set them back more decades. Atlas 3591 didn't get a whole lot of press... but if it had been unmanned, it would have lead for days (especially with Trump out of office).

Last edited by rickair7777; 02-22-2021 at 07:19 AM.
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Old 02-22-2021, 07:15 AM   #20  
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I’m sure they did. But going from three to two is much different than two to one (or zero).

I watched a major biz jet manufacturer recertify an airplane from an existing model into a new and improved model, they changed wings and engines, and it took them seven years to get it approved. That was a model they were already producing. It was a fairly simple change and it took years.

To get a single pilot airplane certified, all the important switches need to be within reach of the guy flying the machine. As it stands right now, those switches are scattered all over the panel and overhead. Boeing and Airbus would (probably) gladly do the research and development to move all these switches and make them accessible to the one pilot, but A. there’s no room to fit them all within reach, and B. It’ll cost millions and millions to research it, develop it and certify it. Who is supposed to pay for all that development? The airlines buying the plane. The manufacturers will have to add millions of dollars to the price of each copy to get a return on their legwork.

I don’t know where you work, but I guarantee my employer won’t pay one extra nickel more than necessary to buy another airframe, let alone a few million more per plane. They’ll gladly continue paying us hundreds of dollars to continue operating the airframes we already own. It doesn’t make any sense. But then again, we get our flight releases on dot matrix paper, so that confirms the frugality.

That doesn’t even include the billions it would cost to upgrade the technology to pull off single pilot or autonomous aircraft operations. We don’t have autonomous trains or ships, and they’re single and dual axis controlled, making them much easier to operate remotely. Once that technology is in place and deemed hack-proof, only then will I even consider worrying about single pilot operations in large airliners. And I still stand behind the statement I won’t see it in my career (20+ years to 65).
This is another reason it won't happen soon... airline managers are interested only in next quarter's earning report, they're quite simply not in the business of making vast investments today with an expected ROI in 20-30 years.

The airframers will have to foot the bill alone, and it will be incremental... they'll slowly add the tech to new models so they can collect the data over many years.

At some point there may be a computer onboard which is virtually "flying" the plane as a shadow pilot to generate and record data for comparison.
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