After reading flight incident reports I was wondering why the black box is kept on the aircraft.
If the aircraft is lost there needs to be a tremendous effort to recover the information. If the aircraft is not lost the pertinent data has often been overwritten by the time an investigation is started. The CVR only seems to last for 2 hours.
Whils I am not advocating removal of these recorders. In these days of satellite communications, would it not be possible for the information to be duplicated on a database on the ground. The information gathered could be analysed proactively. Regular occurrences of minor issues would be highlighted. Occurrences that seem not to have been re-acted to could result in a call to the aircraft to make sure they have been noted and all is well.
Taking it further, miscalculated take-off weights, insufficent fuel allowances and other serious situations would be noticed if the passenger and cargo manifests, fuel purchases and consumption figures were also considered.
The technology to transmit the data volumes off aircraft from any point in the globe at a cost which is close to 'affordable' is only just entering the market (Ku / Ka band). To send even the mandatory parameters would cost the airline industry many millions of dollars per annum . The investment in equiping and carrying the weight of SATCOM hardware with bandwidths able to support the large volumes of data required would also be massive investment . For the tens of thousands of flying hours per day of data sent to be stored again a problem . As to alerts , if its important the crew will know about it , if it a minor fault the crew don't need to be distracted. Anyway how do you propose that all this data is monitored real time?
As with all these things , back up remote collection of aircraft FDR and CVR data probably can and will happen one day , but it will take a long time before it is the norm . The industry as a whole will need to have access to affordable broadband equipment and low enough data transmission costs for it to be standard on every airliner built . Agreed procedures for data storage and security , a whole host of other issues with Pilot unions , other industry and regulatory groups sorted out first.
Currently the humble CVR and DFDR do the job for a one time purchase price ( at a fraction of the cost of Broadband). In the majority of crashes they are recovered. The effort in recovering the data is not the 'raw data' ,its interpretation of the many parameters , background sounds and crew conversation to build the time line and picture of events , that won't change .
Its all about $$$.
Is the Amount of Bandwidth needed worth it.considering the probability of not recovering a CVR/FDR.
I guess your right HAWK21M. Also the number of black box versus the number of "Incidents" i imagine would be very low. This would also support your argument.