Lufthansa Systems has announced it is working with the airline to develop a "next generation" Class II electronic flight bag (EFB) that will be compatible with its entire fleet, and retrofittable in any existing aircraft. Lufthansa began work on this project with US-based Goodrich in 2006, so the system definition is well advanced.

The advantage of what it has called the "EFB Next Gen" is that, unlike installed Class III systems, the pilot interface will be the same in all aircraft types, yet it will have a greater degree of integration with aircraft systems than earlier Class II systems such as Lufthansa's existing "pilot workpad".

As used by Lufthansa, the new EFB will come loaded with another Lufthansa Group product, the Lido eRouteManual with its digital charts.

In addition, says Lufthansa Systems, it will contain "an electronic briefing packet known as the Electronic Flight Folder that contains all data required for flight operations, a document management system, and the applications and features currently offered by the first generation of the pilot's workpad.

The company adds: "This complex software also handles connections between applications on board and on the ground, automatic updates and data synchronisation."

The EFB is designed to make the latest information more easily available to the pilots, and to provide them with current operational data for performance and other calculations. Lufthansa Systems says the laptop docking station and touchscreen interface from Goodrich will be used to supply power, display information and connect the new EFB to the aircraft systems.