Great SIM and great VR! Please just do a quick fix on Thermals... so many of us out there for gliders!

  • Hello IPACS, you guys have done sucha great job so far! Just help us out a bit more on a few features for the gliding/soaring community out there. Flying with the OrbX scenery is great but if we could just have a quick fix on the Thermals would go a long way to start... I think many of us would be happy to support a kick starter for more on gliding options.


    • Official Post

    I'm also a glider pilot and would love to see the winch back in the game and also a towing plane. I'm sort of waiting for vehicles that can interact with the aircraft and those are very likely to come since so many people want push back trucks. When that happens I'm also going to urge adding a towing plane and which back in or even program them myself. I do have a real world license to be towed by an aircraft and a winch so I hope I can get everything right.

    Do you guys tow in the "normal" position behind the aircraft, above the propeller wash or do you tow in the low position underneath the propeller wash? What aircraft types do you have for towing in the real world?

    Also for planning purposes: how long are your winch cables and how much horse power do you got? Steal or fiber?

    And Luis, can you please specify what parameters of the thermals would like to see fixed?
    We had a similar thread in the past where I said we could maybe tweek the values for the diameter, spacing and strength.

    • Official Post

    You're right, we had this discussion before. So you want stormy winds at the mountain tops when you set the wind speed to roughly a light breeze, is that what you mean? I've been in the mountains IRL and was never pushed across the ledge like in the old wind system, so I actually find the current wind field more realistic in Aerofly FS 2 and don't want the old one back. What do you prefer in the old system that the new one doesn't offer? From my experience slope soaring still works in Aerofly FS 2 so what is it exactly that you want back? Turbulence simulation? I'll ask about that, yes.

    General overhaul of weather system is on the wish list, that will probably include changes to the wind system towards more detailed wind systems, I hope. But right now we are busy with other things, like ATC for example.

  • I am not sure that I have detected the changes between the two versions that you have referred to, however for me the windfield simulation has two benefits. One, is that is a good training aide when it comes to understanding ridge lift and simulated wind flow. Secondly, it also represents a good substitute for real world cues.



  • Apologies if I have got this wrong but I am referring to the thermal and windfield display option in version 1. The effect is to produce arrows in the virtual environment representing wind speed and lift or sink. I have not been able to find this in version 2 ( but it may be there?)

  • Thermals that drift and cant with the wind due to gradient and friction, but also turbulence....

    Thermals that have an, even simplified, life cycle...

    Thermals that are possibly triggered by Sun radiation ( angle is important and a function of time and day of year, latitude, but also the type of terrain, which could be simplistically determined from the orthos...

    So many things I would like to have - the ideal would be something along the line of how soaring weather was modelled in my 3 preferred soaring sims, SFS PC, Condorsoaring and Silent-Wings...

  • Hello Jet-Pack, thanks for reaching out. for me I think the major issue first would probably be the diameter as it seems very small and dificult to center. On a second approach off course if they could be more linked to the Cumulus... anyway any steps towards more of the "Condor" approach would be great. Cheers!

  • luis I'm glad i'm not the only one finding the thermals difficult to center. Or find, or when you've found one and you have some wind - the wind will set you off but the thermal seems to stay in place... work to be done.

    Agreed, tried a few hours yesterday in a flat region where we fly in France. Found a few but have never been able to center no matter what technique I tried., they must have very very small diameter. With a Oculus Rift you can get very accurate circles as you have the great freedom of view but still no way to center for me, wind at zero, thermals at max... still love the simulator but... I wish they could just on that on a quick fix, can't be that hard to change the diameter parameter somwhere in the code, guess we need to be more patient. :)

  • I agree. Ridge soaring the ORBX LOWI scenery in the Oculus (with pilot enabled in cockpit camera) gives an amazing sense of reality (Jaw dropping on my first flight). A winch or air tow with a more usable thermal model would take us a lot further in the sense of immersion. Also it would be nice to have more complete ZANDER functionality for those cross country challenges. Perhaps we can hope someday for on-line soaring competitions as in Condor.

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  • No one answered the questions about launch techniques, so I will give it a try (applies to western US). Aerotow is almost always done in the high position unless doing ferry tows or two glider tows. The sight picture is much better in the high tow position and the break after release is safer (no tow rope above you). If towing in extremely rough air, such as through wave rotor clouds, whatever tow position keeps you connected to the tow plane is appropriate. Tow rope length is 200 ft-300 ft standard, with the rope becoming somewhat shorter as the rope wears out. I have never been on tow with a rope less than 150 ft long. In the old days, automobile launch was much more prevalent than winch launch, as Americans had high powered cars and trucks. The tow lines were armored surplus tow cables from military aircraft target towing and were 2000 to 3000 feet long. All you need is a big dry lake and some dust devils to show where to go with the tow. Perhaps Aerofly can be the first simulator for auto tow. I have not launched off a winch as the modern preferred method is aerotow. Auto tow is still used in some remote desert locations if a tow plane is not available. Auto tow technique for the pilot is the same as winch launch, and we could get 1200-1500 ft on a 3000 ft cable.