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Scott AFB Pilots Test Out Cockpit iPads

MASCOUTAH, Ill. (AP) - Pilots at Scott Air Force Base are decluttering cockpits, swapping pounds of paper maps and bulky flight manuals for iPads Minis.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports the experiment involves C-21A planes. Typically, each plane has about 50 pounds of paper on board, including maps, navigational charts and flight manuals. The printouts must be replaced every two months because they're continually updated. 

That costs money: about $25,000 a year in printing costs alone, plus the additional fuel that's consumed because of the weight.  Maj. Jared Detloff is one of the pilots testing the 11 ounce tablet, which he velcros to a control yolk in the cockpit.   He says there's been a learning curve to using the tablet, but so far it has been well-received. 

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