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Some questions about routes.  Topic is solved

OpenRadar is a standalone radar screen which connects to the FlightGear multiplayer servers. It is currently being developed.

Some questions about routes.

Postby morlanius » Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:25 pm

Hi,
I'm sorry for all the posts but I wanted to keep this one separate. I am looking at adding some SID/STAR data to my airport, I have found a few sources for data and I still have questions (Don't worry its not about XML).

Much of the information I have found has a lot of conflicts or differences, which ones do I use? I have found some adapted for the the Sim world and some real life ones, Which ones do people use here?

If I start using these will people know what I'm asking them to do?

And compounding the other two, does the OR system send the route to the server so the client can get at it? otherwise how is everyone co-ordinating this? because when I fly anywhere the autopilot normally just says "(none)" or "DEFAULT" for SID/STAR etc, yet I have seen a number of people where that data is populated. What is the mechanism by which this is happening?

I hope someone can help.

Thanks

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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby sanhozay » Mon Jan 25, 2016 11:29 pm

The SID/STAR entries in the route manager are set up by adding procedures files, e.g. obtained from Navigraph, to your local (FGDATA) installation. The route is also configured locally by the pilot, not downloaded. The OpenRadar route server just allows ATCs to handover pilots and see notes added by the ATC, e.g. route.

If you want to ask pilots to follow a SID/STAR, it makes sense if you can provide a URL where they can view the procedure, then give the code as listed, e.g. TIPOD 2F. It doesn't really matter if it is the current real life procedure or a sim only chart, as long as you are both singing from the same approach plate.

For arrivals, you are more likely to direct them to an initial approach fix and vector onto ILS or visual from there. With SIDs there is more time to sort things out with the pilot so providing a procedure becomes more practical.
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby Lydiot » Mon Jan 25, 2016 11:47 pm

From what I've seen there are a fair amount of instances where using standard procedures don't really "make sense" in a virtual world. Basically a lot of pilots in FG only ask if they can take off or land, possibly what runway to use. They might not be able to navigate using the auto pilot, and they might not care or want it. So asking them to follow a procedure by giving them the name or "too much" information won't work. Of course vectoring them point-to-point works if they're willing.

The other thing of course is that some airports have restrictions based not only on topography but on noise abatement. So rather than flying straight in there might be some turns that make absolutely no sense to an FG pilot when there's only two planes around, none even close. In other words they don't see a reason to go around in circles or flying from x-to-z-to-n-to-y because noise abatement is a non-issue in a virtual world.

Either way, all that was just to say that I think you could just do whatever you want. With a moderately interested pilot you'll have to vector them so the won't know what date or version chart you're using. With an experienced pilot I'm guessing they might have their own SIDs/STARs already.

I'm rambling.... I just had coffee.... sorry....
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby morlanius » Tue Jan 26, 2016 12:36 am

Ahh ok, So I might as well plot out the routes I'm finding useful. As Lydiot said the dynamics are different. I'm a newbie at this, so I'm learning as I go. and I find there are routes that I see very often that aren't catered for in real life. So I've been making up my own routes and making up my own XML files to help me.

So would it be unreasonable for me to put up a web page with not only the layout (I already have this) but also a couple of the routes I have, then they can just tell me they have the entry route?

Would it be advisable to incorporate a predefined squawk code for these routes (I could just put on there if you are entering this route switch to XXXX)?

Thanks
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby Lydiot » Tue Jan 26, 2016 1:29 am

So, this is just my personal opinion, and I suppose you can take it for what it is (I doubt there is consensus here)...

If I'm out flying and an ATC pops up, I may or may not play along. It's just the way it goes. Sometimes we're in the mood, sometimes we're not. I will however always try to stay out of other people's way if I'm interrupting. But having said that; just because I might be more inclined to follow an ATC doesn't mean I'd go online and study made up routes. I already have routes for my "favorite" airports, and I think they're semi-official and get regularly updated.

Now, since I already have updated charts I'd certainly prefer following them rather than new ones, especially if the new ones are entirely fictional. So, in my opinion, I think it'd be wiser for you to grab routes that are official even if they're outdated, because from what I've seen there are several pilots that will prefer a real route rather than a fictional one. So in other words why go through the trouble of programming routes and uploading if you have people not following it because it's not real...

See what I mean?

As far as squawk codes go I'm not a fan. I suppose it depends on the level of realism one wants and what ATC software one uses. When I've used OR I've never bothered with squawks since I can see the planes anyway. If the whole point of them in real life is getting more information then it simply makes zero practical difference in our fictional universe. So just be prepared that some don't really care about them.

So for me, it is usually enough if an ATC tells me to cross the entry fix at altitude x and report back, and then I can follow my own route if I have it, or they can vector me. But I don't think I'll go online and pull a chart and follow it. I'd rather communicate with you.
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby morlanius » Tue Jan 26, 2016 9:55 am

Hi,
Thanks for the repllies, I'm trying to learn all this and want to be as effective as I can. Of course I am not suggesting that anything is mandatory and if no one has seen my route and wants to be vectored I can simply use a route. I understand not everyone wants ATC services and want to free fly, I don't see why that effects too much if im in a tower and someone tells me they are free flight ill leave them alone other than giving some traffic information if required.

So what I'll do is add in the two main routes that I have seen people use and plug that into XML (it makes it easier) and I'll also plug in a couple of routes that I find useful for vectoring. I normally am stationed at EGSS which has some awful routes because of the noise reduction (as mentioned earlier) which has no effect, and quite often people coming accross from the EDXX airports don't actually meet any of the official routes thats why I have a few that I use to intercept them, and I just direct them using headings or navaids etc.

I'm not trying to impose anything on anyone I just want to provide as best as I can, I'm a newbie and I make mistakes, having some set of pseudo-procedures has helped me since I've been using them.

I see about the squawk codes, it was just an idea that I thought people could use (as I seem to be picking up some regular flights lately) to make things a little easier and immersive even though it would not be 100% realistic.

Thanks,
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby Lydiot » Tue Jan 26, 2016 6:19 pm

I think you're on the right path and I certainly didn't want to imply that your work wasn't appreciated. There will definitely be all sorts of pilots, including those wanting squawks, that will want your service :-)
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby OE-PH1 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 7:32 am

I am one of these few guys who want it as realistic as possible when I visit a controlled airport with my airliner. VATSIM is doing a good job there. in FG multiplayer it's much more liberal with how to deal with procedures. I think in FG everybody has the freedom to contribute as much as he/she can. Means for ATC: I appreciate every level of controlling, either just simply clearances, vectoring or also supporting full procedures like SIDs, STARs, transitions... whatever. The higher the level, the more sophisticated it gets for both parts, controllers and pilots. Ideally, both parts meet on same level!

Charts/Routes:
For me, as a well trained pilot, on "high level controlling" I suggest ATCs to provide a link to which charts they want me to use. Of course, I have many SIDs/STARs in my aircraft's database, but if they differ from what ATC wants me to use, it's my job to follow the charts given by ATC. For me, it doens't matter if there is much traffic or not, if there is noise reduction or not. As a pilot I follow exactly what the controller wants me to do. In reality, this would save mine and my passengers' lives! (presuming that the controller's instructions make sense! using the correct phrases is mandatory!)

Which charts to prefer: Have a look on which charts VATSIM users would use. These are the most realistic ;-)
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby morlanius » Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:51 pm

Hi,
This is great, these are all the kinds of things that you don't initially discover as a newbie. So far I think I'm doing okay no one has complained yet and for the most part people have been very positive.

The routes at EGSS are a little confusing (IRL) but I have been going over them and adding what I can into XML.. I'm currently using 2 northern routes (west and east) and 2 for the south respectively. Pretty much these are the textbook ABBOT LOREL routes.

Although in some cases I simplify so that the finals are the same for all ABBOT routes, but no one comes in from the west very often, and when they do they are so close to a vector for LAM I just send them there, then up into an ABBOT approach. I like this one because it gives pilots more time for descent and the vectors are at a less aggressive.

If there are just one or two arrivals I will just bring them in via LOREL but I would normally use that for departures as it seems to make sense, and this way is pretty close to the CAA website once you get past all the heaps of routes that purely route to other places.

There is a dynamic in FG that people fly routes depending who is on, what they feel like, distance/time available, everyone turns at different rates and has different response times so I simply do not use or include any of the routes that would be tricky.

So based on the few posts here there is a kind of consensus: be as real as practical, make my routes available, and be consistent. My battle with improving my VFR technique is ongoing.

I'll prefix any "very fictional" routes which I use for "special occasions" with MOR. But I expect the only people using those will be the few guys that I direct to that page because they practice regularly from my airport.

I have all kinda of rants on my blog which is a a flight log of sorts, tracking my learning progress, at morsflights.blogspot.co.uk

Everyone’s input is much appreciated and I'm learning all the time. Its especially nice to get advice and views from actual pilots.

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Re: Some questions about routes.  

Postby Johan G » Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:21 am

@ Morlanius: Tip: Add a link to your blog to your forum signature (User Control Panel > Profile > Edit signature). ;)
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby morlanius » Tue Apr 26, 2016 9:08 am

Done :) thanks.
Although now I am using the published routes (except ASKEY and CASEY as they are the same as LOREL and ABBOT)

http://www.lifemud.com/FG/EGSS/ is the link to a dedicated page i am setting up for this purpose.
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby elgaton » Tue Apr 26, 2016 9:50 am

The OpenRadar author has set up a SourceForge repository to collect route files, so I think it would be better if you submit your routes there :wink:
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby jaxsin » Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:05 am

I bookmarked your blog, hope to see you continue writing.
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby PINTO » Tue Apr 26, 2016 4:40 pm

@elgaton, I have ~450 (I think, been a while since I've counted) free route files if you'd like them. I wont upload them to sourceforge, but I'll send you a zip.
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Re: Some questions about routes.

Postby elgaton » Tue Apr 26, 2016 5:12 pm

As long as
  • they are licensed under the GPLv3 or later, and
  • the authors are fine with this upload,
please do so! Feel free to send me a PM with a download link.

(By the way: Wolfram, could you please put a license file in the openradar-routes repository? I guess the license is the same as the one used for OpenRadar, that is, GPLv3+, but better be sure...)
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