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Cold Calc MDA: The Must-Have App for Any Commercial Airline Pilot

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During my time at Apple Expo in Toronto, I met Captain R. Sulpizio, an active Canadian commercial pilot. He has developed an ingenius app to help pilots make instant calculations for the minimum descent altitude (MDA) by quickly filling in a few fields. If you’re a pilot, or one in training listen up, as the following will make sense to you. Here’s the app description:

Cold Calc MDA is designed to clearly and simply input the minimum required fields (Elevation, Charted MDA and the reported temperature) to obtain a temperature corrected MDA. Once these three variables have been entered simply touch the background to dismiss the keyboard and your results are immediately calculated for you and your HAA ( Height Above Aerodrome ) and corrected MDA are clearly displayed.

Error Checking

The app automatically checks for input errors such as:

-MDA being lower than the Elevation,

-MDA equals Elevation,

-Either Elevation and/or MDA being omitted etc.

Modifications

The temperature is input via a slider making it easy to modify the reported temperature without having to type in numbers via a keyboard. These modifications are always displayed in real time.

Once you have set-up your parameters and corrected your MDA the app can be turned off. Should a change occur at your destination airport, turning the app back on will reveal all the previous entered data so only the changes required to be made require entry.

Very Simple, Very Clean & Very Accurate

Scenario example :

You are setting up for an ILS approach. You enter the following data

Elevation : 230 ‘

Charted MDA : 442’

Airport Temperature : -17 c

The app will calculate the :

-HAA

-Correction to be applied to your MDA &

-Corrected MDA.

As you approach the field, the controller advises that the Glide Slope is u/s and the approach has now changed to a “Localizer Only” approach !

You pull out “Cold Calc MDA” app and the only change you require is the “LOC ONLY” charted MDA. You now enter the Loc Only MDA and your new Corrected MDA is immediately displayed in bold large easy to read digits.

As always, this app is not meant to be used as a primary tool, but as an aid to assist in making calculations. Do not rely on this app, as there is also a disclaimer clearly included within the app. Captain Sulpizio claims this is the only app of its kind in the entire App Store, and so far the positive reviews have indicated other pilots have enjoyed it too.

For you pilots out there, you’re in luck because Cold Calc MDA is selling at 50% off as an introductory offer. There is also a free lite version to try before you buy. Click here to download it for $2.99, and let me know what you think!

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  • Anonymous

    its neat, but arent you sappose to have your phone off while flying…?

  • Anonymous

    its neat, but arent you sappose to have your phone off while flying…?

  • Anonymous

    its neat, but arent you sappose to have your phone off while flying…?

  • Airplane Mode.

  • Airplane Mode.

  • Mac

    Lol still wouldn’t wanna be riding in a plane with someone relying on their phone to tell them how to land the plane lol

  • Mac

    Lol still wouldn’t wanna be riding in a plane with someone relying on their phone to tell them how to land the plane lol

  • Mac

    Lol still wouldn’t wanna be riding in a plane with someone relying on their phone to tell them how to land the plane lol

  • Anonymous

    The app is pretty simple and handy.  Depending on the type of automation in your aircraft, you might have to do all these calculations yourself and that would traditionally involve flipping through charts and calculating several multiplication equations and writing lots of notes etc.  Yes you’re ‘heads down’ using the app, but you would be even if you didn’t have the app, and the app reduces the heads down time because it’s way quicker.  All these calcs would be done en-route anyways (in airplane mode) to avoid doing it during critical phases of flight.  Pretty good app.

  • Rick

    The app is to be used as a reference. Once you quickly find your corrected altitudes, you have time to do it manually against your airlines/government approved charts. you’ll find that the calculations are exactly as the charts as it uses the standard and identical formulas. 
    Using the app actually has more accurate results as the charts “round” the numbers.
    ColdCalcPRO (also available on the app store ) has more fields like FAF,M/A & FPA.

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