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The US regulator mandates additional measure for inadvertent autopilot engagement in A220s during take-off

WASHINGTON — The Federal Aviation Administration revealed two of 38 Airbus A220 take-off incidents were nearly catastrophic. The unintentional autopilot engagement requires additional precautionary measures to prevent a recurrence, the US regulator says. ( More...

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Scott Campbell 4
Flown a few miles on the Canadair C1000 or whatever Airbus wants to call it, love them - but this is a BIG problem especially for Delta ...
bentwing60 11
Damn those pesky New age autopilots, they want to do it all!
James Simms 3
Never would have had a problem w/Otto the AutoPilot
Ronald Spencer 3
The Robots are taking over
Tim Dyck 3
Wait til planes become self aware and see the pilots as a threat to safety. Science fiction has spent a century warning us of what will happen but we keep recklessly moving forward.
Mark Jenkins 6
According to the article that I read, human pilots are inadvertently selecting autopilot instead of auto throttle due to the relative proximity of two switches. This has nothing to do with self-aware planes and everything to do with poor user interface design.
darjr26 2
What is a detached auto throttle?
Peter Fuller 3
Seems “detached” was a poor word choice: “disconnected” or “disengaged” would have more precisely described the situation.
Steven Williamson 3
The software programmer who has never flown an aircraft had no problem with the original engagement!
Well the guy who installed the cupholders hasn't ever flown an aircraft either, so why aren't you bitching about them?
Chris B 5
This is a much better article than the posted one.
bentwing60 4
Yep, and these days it seems to have more to do with the 'Button pushers' than the buttons pushed!

Doug Parker 3
When I did tech support, we'd call that a PEBCAM error: Problem Exists Between Chair and Mouse.
Philip Lanum 1
The A220 uses a mouse during takeoff?

A joystick maybe, but a mouse?
When he did tech support, he'd call that a PEBCAS error: Problem Exists Between Chair and Stick.

Happy now?
davemc380 1
We call it a problem with the carbon-based interface
watters robert 1
Not really; pilot error is always blamed for shit design.
Stephen Leftly 2
I agree this looks to be a design failure ...on two or three fronts.

Firstly why is the auto throttle disengaging in turbulence - the reason given is inconsistent airspeed indications from sensors. That should be fixed. I would guess there is enough data to show that if there is a discrepancy either the lowest or highest reading is correct.

The second is that the two buttons should not be close together which allows for misselection and both have the word "auto" as a prefix.

Finally should the autopilot function be selectable at that low altitude just after takeoff?
Randolph Hesler 2
Many, many years ago Boeing had a similar problem on their 757/767 fleet. It was attributed to bad switches in the MCP (Mode Control Panel), if memory serves me correctly.


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