25 hour flight data recorder certified for Boeing aircraft


A cockpit and voice data recorder jointly developed by Honeywell and Curtiss-Wright has been certified for use on the Boeing 737, 767 and 777 aircraft.

Cockpit voice and flight data recorders, or black boxes as they are more commonly known provide a valuable source of data for investigators and engineers if an aircraft crashes.

The Honeywell Connected Recorder (HCR-25)  is compliant with the latest regulations and requirements and meets the mandate from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) of a minimum 25-hour cockpit voice recording for aircraft weighing over 27,000kg. It is the first Curtiss-Wright product type-certified on 737, 767 and 777 aircraft.

Several regions around the world have issued related mandates in accordance with EASA, including Europe, Canada, Mexico and Singapore.

The HCR-25 can be ordered directly from Boeing or Honeywell. The device is based on Curtiss-Wright’s Fortress cockpit voice recorder technology and Honeywell’s Flight Recorder 5 (HFR5) design concept.

Steve Hadden, vice president of services and connectivity for Honeywell Aerospace said, “Reliable cockpit voice and flight data recorders are vital to flight safety and since 2019 we’ve been working with Curtiss-Wright to design and develop the next generation of mandate-compliant voice and data recorders using real-time connectivity. Through this increased connectivity, aircraft operators have another source of data collection to improve aircraft maintenance and performance,”

Real-time access is provided by access to Honeywell’s satellite communications network, enabling data to be downloaded remotely. The data recorder also has a Gigabit Ethernet interface for Flight Operations Quality Assurance.

Flight and voice data recorders have been required to provide 25 hours of recording time by EASA since 2021. Steve Lambert, head of customer-facing avionics at Curtiss-Wright said, “With more space you can capture more data because sometimes it’s not just what happens during the flight that matters. The more data you have the better.

Curtiss-Wright is the exclusive supplier of Honeywell’s next-generation recorders for the air transport and business aviation markets. The recorders are also suitable for retrofit applications and can be form-fit replacements for Honeywell’s HFR5 series units when upgrading.

Lynn M. Bamford, chair and CEO of Curtiss-Wright said, “We are proud to announce this important Boeing type-certification milestone that allows the commercial airline industry to take advantage of the latest generation of Curtiss-Wright’s voice and flight data recorders,”

Curtiss-Wright designs and manufactures its flight recorder products at its Bournemouth, England, facility.

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Ben has worked as a journalist and editor, covering technology, engineering and industry for the last 20 years. Initially writing about subjects from nuclear submarines to autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies, he was editor of a leading UK-based engineering magazine before becoming editor of Aerospace Testing in 2017.

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