Delta Airlines will issue Microsoft Surface 2 tablets to its nearly 11,000 pilots, beginning later in 2013.
The lightweight tablets will be used initially as electronic flight bags to replace the traditional 38-pound paper-based pilot flight bags.
This will save the airline about 1.2 million gallons of fuel annually and about $13 million per year in fuel and associated costs.
Delta plans to expand the functionality of the tablets in the future by providing the pilots electronic dispatch and flight release information, real-time weather forecasts, up-to-the-minute operational information and communication with technicians on the ground.
The airline will begin issuing the tablets to pilots of its Boeing 757 and Boeing 767 aircraft later this year with fleet-wide use of the tablets to be achieved by the end of 2014.