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An armed mode changes to an active mode. What does this mean?

  • A
    The aircraft changes its guidance function and the change is highlighted on the FMA.
  • B
    The pilot needs to make a new selection on the autopilot control panel.
  • C
    The armed mode remains armed and the active mode becomes active.
  • D
    A warning will sound to drive pilots' attention.

Refer to figure.
Not all modes have an armed state available; a mode will only become armed if certain criteria are met; an armed mode will become engaged (replacing the previously engaged mode, if any) when certain criteria are met.

Engaged modes should be annunciated at different locations and with different colours and font sizes than armed modes to assist in mode recognition. The transition from an armed mode to an engaged mode should provide an additional attention­getting feature, such as boxing and flashing on an electronic display for a suitable, but brief, period (e.g., ten seconds), to assist in flight crew awareness.

Aural notification of mode changes should be limited to special considerations. Colours, font type, font size, location, highlighting, and symbol flashing have historical precedent as good discriminators, when implemented appropriately

The failure of a mode to engage/arm when selected by the pilot should be apparent.

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