The FAA And Your Kindle

via Ben Brooks. Nick Bilton, The New York Times:

The F.A.A. requires that before a plane can be approved as safe, it must be able to withstand up to 100 volts per meter of electrical interference.

The Kindle emits 30 microvolts, or 0.00003 volts, per meter. But how about a hundred Kindles? EMT Labs testing manager Kevin Bothmann answers that question:

Electromagnetic energy doesn’t add up like that. Five Kindles will not put off five times the energy that one Kindle would.

Even if it did linearly add up, to get to 100 volts per meter from Kindle electrical interference a 365 passenger Boeing 777-300ER will need 3.3 million Kindles. Or over 9000 Kindles per passenger.


The F.A.A. and other groups seem to be running out of reasons we can’t use digital e-readers on planes during takeoff and landing. Maybe their next response will be: “Because I said so!”