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Project OS 11/30 - Electronic Flight Bags (EFB)

Topic code: 
Flight Operations
Project status: 

Closure notes:

Project closed 11 December 2012.

Amendments to CAO's 82.0, 82.3 & 82.5 have been published and CAAP 233-1(0) has been published.

CASA intends to develop rules and standards that will address basic requirements for the issuance of operational approvals for the use of portable EFBs by air transport (passenger carrying) operators. Comprehensive guidance material will be developed to support the new standards along with guidance material for other users of portable EFBs.


The paperless cockpit has become a reality with the advent of the latest technological developments in commercial off the shelf (COTS) electronic tablets. Tablets such as Apple's Ipad, and other similar devices, loaded with purpose designed software are now being offered to the aviation industry for use by pilots as portable electronic flight bags (EFBs).

In response to this development, a decision by the International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) Operations Panel was recently undertaken to reconvene the EFB Subgroup (EFBSG). This was necessary because the Operations Panel recognised that ICAO's current EFB Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs), including the supporting guidance material (GM), has been made obsolete by the latest tablet technology.

Consequently, CASA recently participated in an EFBSG meeting in Montreal. The Subgroup has been tasked with the development of high-level SARPs and detailed GM that will address basic requirements for the issuance of operational approvals for EFBs by the State of the Operator. It is intended that the work will be completed by the end of June 2012.

Project Objective

The ICAO Subgroup identified a number of issues in relation to the development of new SARPS;

  • the pace of evolving technology makes the development of new and appropriate EFB SARPs and GM a significant challenge;
  • the data connectivity between portable EFBs and aircraft systems needs to be carefully considered. Two way data sharing between EFBs and aircraft systems raises data security and corruption issues;
  • aircraft performance applications for portable EFBs should be standardised, including the input/output features of these programs, and also data formats. Such programs should comply with the Standardised Computerised Aircraft Performance (SCAP) specifications, which define the interface requirements for airplane manufacturer supplied analysis software for implementation in the airline user environment;
  • the software assurance and the management of the integrity of safety critical navigational and performance data;
  • the significant difficulty in assessing electronic data bases derived from a paper origin (Aircraft Flight Manual); and
  • whilst the value of pilots using EFBs as a resource in the cockpit is universally acknowledged, the use of such devices must be regulated to ensure that the information provided is accurate and reliable, and that information overload does not result.

CASA's continued work in ICAO's EFBSG will ensure exposure and participation in the development of new international EFB standards that are harmonised and best practice. This along with reviewing other major aviation regulator material on the subject will assist CASA in the development of its own EFB standards and guidance for aircraft operators and pilots, through amendments to the CAO 82 series and development of a supporting CAAP.

August 2012: Formal consultation will now be undertaken via a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM). Amendments to the CAO 82.0 series and CAAP 233 will be included in the NPRM.


This project was approved by Rick Leeds, A/g EM Standards Development on 29 August 2011.

Project management

Project Leader: Charles Lenarcic

Project Sponsor: Greg Hood, EM CASA Operations

Standards Development Project Manager: Charles Lenarcic

Project Priority



Title Details Date
Consultation updates in 2012
Project OS 11/30 - Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) This project is now closed

Refer to the project closure notes for further information.
11 Dec 2012
Addendum to NFRM 1211OS – Electronic Flight Bags – Amendments to CAOs 82.0, 82.3 and 82.5 Addendum published. 10 Dec 2012
NFRM 1211OS - Electronic Flight Bags - Amendments to Civil Aviation Orders (CAOs) 82.0, 82.3 and 82.5 This NFRM has been published. 27 Nov 2012
NPRM 1211OS – Electronic Flight Bags – Proposed amendments to Sections 82.0, 82.3 and 82.5 of the Civil Aviation Orders This NPRM closed for comment 14 September 2012. 17 Sep 2012
NPRM 1211OS – Electronic Flight Bags – Proposed amendments to Sections 82.0, 82.3 and 82.5 of the Civil Aviation Orders All comments should be sent via the online system by close of business 14 September 2012 20 Aug 2012
Consultation updates in 2011
Project OS 11/30 - Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) Project approved. 31 Aug 2011