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International, independent, e-magazine on skydiving, BASE & tunnel

Unwanted AAD Activations

Velocity 103 in a dive — by Alex Verbruggen
Velocity 103 in a dive — by Alex Verbruggen

The ability to exceed activation speeds with an AAD (Automatic Activation Device) under canopy is not a new issue. With canopy designs that are capable of higher vertical speeds, advanced landing techniques and higher wing loadings, AAD activation while under canopy is something that should be in the forefront of people’s minds.

Knowledge is Power

We want to remind everyone that it’s important that you understand the parameters under which your AAD operates. Keep in mind that if you are doing high performance landings, it is possible to achieve descent rates under canopy that may activate your AAD.

Even though an AAD may be performing as intended, unwanted activations under canopy have led to fatalities in the past. This is an issue that should not be taken lightly.

unwanted activations under canopy have led to fatalities in the past

Specialist AADs

Most AAD manufacturers have developed options with increased activation speeds to accommodate jumpers who are doing high performance landings. It is important to know when you should be using these units, but also to understand the tradeoffs. Consult with your AAD manufacturer if you have questions regarding your AAD settings, and with your canopy manufacturer for any questions about your canopy.

The above is a Press Release by Performance Designs, dated 2 July 2015, see original here