In the end, it all comes down to the memory. Currently, airplane’s “black box” flight data recorders (FDRs) are designed above all else to preserve the memory in the event of a crash. In the case of Malaysia Airlines lost flight MH370, however, the question may now become about how the reporting and recording is controlled. I spoke to EDN (our sister site) contributing editor Nicole Faubert last week, and she was wondering what electronics were inside the important black box. Here’s some of the things she found out.
According to the article on EDN, “A solid state flight data recorder (SSFDR) can store up to 25 hours of flight data. The main components of an SSFDR are an interface and controller board (ICB), power supply, crash survivable memory unit (CSMU) and an optional under water locator beacon (ULB).”
Electronics inside an open flight data recorder box (Source AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
"The CSMU is designed to be resistant to shock, temperature extremes, and pressure according to EUROCAE ED-112 standard for Minimum Operational Performance Specification for Crash Protected Airborne Recorder Systems...”
To read the entire article with images of what’s inside the flight data recorder and what information is automatically sent to the ground, visit EDN.com.
— Janine Love , UBM Tech