[Avionics Magazine 11-10-2016] Azul Airlines pilots will be able to more effectively link Electronic Flight Bags (EFBs) with onboard and external networks with the new Rockwell Collins EFB Interface and Communication Unit (EICU) developed in partnership with Airbus. The EICU is a secure server router being certified by Airbus on the A320neo and A330neo aircraft families. The EICU will debut from 2017 onwards on 63 Airbus A320neos for Azul Airlines.
Packaged as a lightweight and compact unit, the EICU provides complex information assurance capabilities to protect data transfer over wireless and wired communications protocols, portable and factory installed EFBs. Rockwell Collins has designed it to move data on and off the aircraft using the most cost effective communications channel, including cellular, satcom or ACARS for data transfer both in-flight and on the ground.
The capabilities give airlines the ability to connect and run EFB apps while establishing a secure wireless access point for the cockpit and cabin crew. With its built-in avionics interface device, the EICU gathers and transmits industry-standard FOQA data files using cellular. Additionally, Rockwell Collins can move data directly to the airline’s back office using a managed network service.
Airbus selected Rockwell Collins to provide a wireless EFB solution in 2014, and was selected to install the EICU system for the Airbus A320neo, A330neo and classic aircraft variants.