Re: Can't use GPS on Alaska Airlines

From: (Gerard Foley)
Organization: The Greater Columbus FreeNet
Date:         13 Sep 96 03:03:33 
References:   1 2 3 4
Followups:    1
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Dave Benjamin ( wrote:
: Robert Moore wrote:
: >(snip)
: > One of the worst airline midair accidents was caused by a passenger playing
: > his portable FM receiver during flight. (snip)

: Please identify the accident and the circumstances.

: It seems incomprehensible that aircraft avionics that MUST frequently
: fly over high-powered radio transmitters could be so suceptible to stray
: onboard RF.  My understanding is that the restrictions on in-flight use
: of electronic devices is based entirely on unsubstantiated anecdotal
: evidence.

IEEE magazine "Spectrum" Sep 1996 has a long article on this subject.
One curiosity is that the in two incidents described in some detail, where
the flight crew "confirmed" the interference by having the passenger
carried devices turned off and then on to produce the observed effect,
the affected instruments were compass or gyro.  There is no discussion
at all of how electromagnetic fields from a radio receiver could
possibly affect a gyro.