General Aviation (GA) accounts for the vast majority of aviation accidents in the United States every year. As a result of the implementation of Flight Data Recorders (FDR) in GA aircraft, we now have FDR flight data that we can use to improve safety, by detecting and correcting unsafe behaviors and habits. Because of the high variability in GA operations and GA flight performance, detecting these safety events is not trivial. In this paper, we evaluate the usefulness of an event-driven method in characterizing the safety of the approach phase of a flight. In particular, we develop algorithms to detect safety events during the approach phase from FDR data from a G1000 glass cockpit display on a Cirrus SR-20 fleet. We adjust the current safety event definitions to the SR20, and then change the limits of the safety events, to make the safety events in our dataset more consistent with each other. While changing the definitions gave us meaningful results, we also suggest that new metrics are developed to be used together with safety events in future work.
Fala, N. and Marais, K., “Detecting Safety Events during Approach in General Aviation Operations”, Aviation 2016, AIAA, Washington, DC., https://doi.org/10.2514/6.2016-3914