airbus disater wating to happen?

  slimvices 15:20 31 May 2005

I have just read in one of my journals , that airbus are going to connect all the enertainment sytems on its new plane to a ethernet cable and connect to the internet so all passengers can surf and fly at the same time. great!. the artical then goes on to say that all the fly by wire systems for the plane are to use the same cable. So if my understanding is correct, some hacker somewhere should be able to bust into the flight systems on the new plane when it goes into service. Does this seem like a good idea?(the plane design not the hacking in bit)

  Total Care Support 15:55 31 May 2005

Hi Slim

the same cable or the same type of cable?

if it is the same cable and the data for passengers usage is the same data cables as that used to fly the plane it does seem a little strange as you would think when planes now days have so many redundancy systems so that if something fails that their is a back up system to cover it that the idea of access to the computer systems controlling the flight would be so exposed. I would have thought that with the new caution in the air (no pun meant) that if they design along those lines it would not FCC would not approve it this would mean the plane would not be allowed to enter the USA.

Considering the size of the new plane if you take USA out of approved flight paths the cost of the project would prob not cover itself. With the US government being that paranoid and the ideas of Hijacking being in the forefront of their minds they would have to be very very inept to miss this.


  DieSse 17:30 31 May 2005

"So if my understanding is correct...."

I can't see any possibility that your understanding is correct.

  slimvices 17:41 31 May 2005

The article referd to the same cable. I would like to think it is run as a loop so it needs to break twice to fail!. They don't normally run redundant cabling on planes (there is big pressure to reduce wieght, in fact in the mid 80's it was found that the insulation on the wires absorbed water over time and was causing electrical shorts and fires on some passenger aircraft. It is cheaper to build a new plane than re-wire it so the industry used a new type insulation on the new planes made, and sold the old planes to third world airlines). I have just had a look to see if I have kept the article,but cannot find it. I think it was in "new electronics" .

  Total Care Support 18:00 31 May 2005

Ok so I am sad.

I had a quick look about and found these to .Pdf's

click here

click here

I will admit i have only scan read them but they appear to be reports regarding the in flight entertainment systems and mention Airbus as one of the people involved. but I have found no mention (only scan reading remember) of it being the same cabling as the flight controls. This is something I would not mind knowing the answer too now as I would not want to get on to a plane that has that sort of cableing I understand the need to keep weight down but at the cost of security??????

  slimvices 20:47 31 May 2005

the original article is in new electronics april 2005. It says that all the planes systems will run on an ethernet. They plan to use an ethernet switch to enbale the flight systems to have priority over other systems. The bit that worries me is do you want to have internet access on a plane with the flight systems running on the same network. It sounds a bit worring to me, especially as it is airbus(they seem to have a high number of failures, and more often than not the flight control systems seem to often crop up in the aftermath).

  Forum Editor 21:23 31 May 2005

I'm really looking forward to my first flight in the new aircraft, and it won't worry me that the flight systems are using the same cable runs as the entertainment systems (if indeed that's the case).

I know enough about networking to know that the onboard flight computers will not be accessible to a hacker. A Boeing 747 carries about 1200lbs of paint externally. A couple of reels of ethernet cable weight about 40lbs. Take it from me, the new Airbus will have a degree of separation when it comes to data systems.

  TOPCAT® 12:25 01 Jun 2005

Looks as though the Airbus designers have dropped into the forum and read these comments with some alarm. :o))

Sorry, FE but you'll have to wait a bit longer for that first flight!

click here

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