IFR Capability?

  • I am thinking of buying Aerofly FS 2 for PC to practice IFR procedures and including en route Nav (VOR/NDB), NBD and VOR holds and a multitude of approaches including NDB/DME and ILS/DME. Is this currently possible in AeroFly FS 2 and are all the navaids modelled and could I use real world plates and conduct a full hold and approach?


    Also are the systems sufficiently modelled to allow this?


    Is there a way to view plates in the cockpit in VR?


    Jacks

  • you can display any desktop application in VR if you have an oculus rift. You get a screen you can resize and position free in your sim, so it should be possible to display any digital charts.

    Wish for Aerofly FS 2:

    - Flightpath recording on hard drive and replay in sim from different view points

    - Smoke for aerobatic planes

    - Multiplayer or at least watching other people flying sitting on ground or inside tower

  • I think you would be very content with FS2 as an aid to instrument flying training.


    You cannot do audio idents on the navaids which does not seem to be regarded as important. I don't think our IPACS FS2 friends in Tübingen have instrument ratings! The nav aids work well with the exception of manual tuning of the 737 ADF which is hopefully temporarily broken.


    The DME is a little bit hit and miss and is hard to predict, it is currently unreliable in the Aermacchi military trainer and in all other planes does not always work with published DME equiped navaids. There is no ground speed or estimated time of arrival function. Most cockpit clocks give working timers which is nice.


    There is no military TACAN and no navaids in the F-15 or F-18. TACAN simulation would be unusual. ADF needle dip in a turn is not simulated but I have never seen it simulated anywhere else.


    The minimum visibility is reasonable for Cat I ILS approaches, it could be a bit less for a 200 foot height decision and Approach Lighting is permanently on which spoils true minimums at big airports. The minimum cloudbase is about 1,200 feet which does not suit cloud breaks at low lying airports.

    The in sim 'navigation' page allows a 2D route to be created which can be seen in any cockpit map displays. A separate map can be displayed in flight. The published waypoints in approach plates, SIDs and STARS are very well represented and are normally accurate. The nav aid database is not kept up to date which does not bother me.


    The sim is very young and is regularily improved so shortcomings will probably be resolved at some point in the not distant future.

    There are many other rounded and entertaining features and the sim is a really rewarding experience. I don't have VR but with paper or tablet displayed charts and plates a very authentic IMC flight can be created, The nav aids work world wide and allow basic non 3D scenery IMC practice outside FS2 defined areas.


    Flights into mountainous region airports in (free) Southern California and (add-on) Switzerland are excellent in IMC and with selected visibility with charts or plates are thoroughly immersive, hill tops and peaks passing by in the convincing murk are impressive in the Palmdale area and on approach procedures to Zurich runway 28. Sion and Lugano steep approaches work well.


    The FS2 planes feel good, it does a good job of simulating real flight. The sim doesn't need a super computer to give first class performance so I'd say go for it AND it looks great in good weather AND has a very good helicopter.

  • The published waypoints in approach plates, SIDs and STARS are very well represented and are normally accurate.


    Flights into mountainous region airports in (free) Southern California and (add-on) Switzerland are excellent in IMC and with selected visibility with charts or plates are thoroughly immersive, hill tops and peaks passing by in the convincing murk are impressive in the Palmdale area and on approach procedures to Zurich runway 28. Sion and Lugano steep approaches work well.

    I seem to have a different sim. ;) Due to the automatic FAF that AFS2 adds to the flightplan, I find it pretty hard, if not impossible, to program approaches into the flightplan. You will more or less have to fly them 'manually'. Besides, the sim doesn't know approaches, SIDs and STARs (also no holds btw) so if you want to fly them you have to program them point by point into the flightplan. Which may be a problem due to that automated FAF. I myself have also problems programming point by point because I do not see all those published waypoints (but that may be my bad) and often end up adding user waypoints to get things done.


    All in all I do not think AFS2 is the sim to get if you want to practice real world IFR procedures. Too many things are missing and what's missing is hard to get done in other ways. Besides, most of the planes don't have the systems to fly entire approaches. Flying basic ILS's can be done in some and you can somehow do fake RNAV approaches but for realistic practicing you should look at P3D (FSX) or maybe XP.


    EDIT

    BTW Another problem of that automated FAF is that it is added at a fixed location (10 nm out of the runway) no matter what, so even if that leads you into a mountain... Even doing fake RNAV approaches doesn't help here: AFS2 simply doesn't know where the mountains are and plans the approach the same way for every runway out there. This will probably and hopefully be solved whenever ATC will be added in the future.

  • I agree with J van E. We were lead to believe the fixed approach points would be update, fixed, removed, or something some time ago. This came to a head when Innsbruck approached put a mountain in your approach path. So that is how long ago we were told it would be corrected.


    An easy fix would be to make those fixed points adjustable by the user. Just let us click on the point and drag it to a more practical location for the approach.


    Regards,

    Ray

    A steely-eyed Sierra Hotel record setting F-15E Strike Eagle simulator pilot. 8o
    Out now: Hawaiian Islands 8) Part 1: Kauai + Niihau v2 and Part 2 Oahu Island.

    On short final Part 3: Molokai, Maui, Lanai, Kohoolawe + Molokini Crater



  • An easy fix would be to make those fixed points adjustable by the user. Just let us click on the point and drag it to a more practical location for the approach.

    Yes, how hard can it be to simply remove that fixed FAF, I wonder... That would be great already.

  • I also think that for practicing real world IFR procedures there are better options out there, but they need further investments to be "as real as it gets". I don't know anything about xplane, but for P3D you'd need some Addons to simulate real world procedures : a complex airliner with a fully functional FMC, for example the PMDG Boeing 737, 747 or 777, or the fs labs Airbus A320. Then you need to update the default database which is from 2006 and only knows basic navaids, for SIDs and STARs to show up correctly you'd probably need something like a Navigraph subscription to keep you up to date. Another thing you should consider is that real world procedures would probably also mean realistic ATC. Aerofly doesn't have ANY ATC, and P3D only has a very basic ATC which is suitable for standard approaches but nor for special procedures like Innsbruck. That said you need to choose one of the available third party options for ATC, none of which is perfect. And maybe you'd also like an Addon for real world weather conditions like Active Sky. All in all you're going to spend a lot of money if you really want to practice real world procedures.

  • on the oculus panel in VR Mode you have on the right side a clickspot for this. I am in a train now, cannot give you the exact procedure. :) Possibly you also need to activate something in a preferences menu once, but i am not quiet sure.


    I can also display AF2 in the window. XD

    Wish for Aerofly FS 2:

    - Flightpath recording on hard drive and replay in sim from different view points

    - Smoke for aerobatic planes

    - Multiplayer or at least watching other people flying sitting on ground or inside tower

  • All in all you're going to spend a lot of money if you really want to practice real world procedures.

    True. But at least you have the options to get it done. ;) Hopefully AFS2 will offer those options out of the box somewhere in the future!

  • How does that work? I want to display XCsoar when flying gliders in VR...

    It is called "Virtual Desktop". And you can pin the window with the icon in the right bottom.

    I cannot recall if you can even undock a single window….

    Wish for Aerofly FS 2:

    - Flightpath recording on hard drive and replay in sim from different view points

    - Smoke for aerobatic planes

    - Multiplayer or at least watching other people flying sitting on ground or inside tower

  • Ladies and Gentlemen please refer to the original post, can FS2 give effective assistance to someone studying the skills of IFR navigation presumably leading to a professional standard qualification for an IR or as part of a CPL or ATPL program?

    This sim will help a student acquire the demanding skills to prove their competence with primary nav aids, they will need to demonstrate safe and controlled flight perhaps on one engine in a twin, down to the minimums of their desired licence and aeroplane.


    FS2 will absolutely allow realistic raw precision and non precision instrument procedures down to an decision or minimum descent height as low as 250 feet in a piston twin or single with regular avionics. That is the standard of an Instrument Rating, the WHOLE point of the original post.

    To get an IR there will be no programing of an RNAV route, there will be no FMC/CDU proficiency check, there will be nothing relevant to the admittedly 100% sub-standard FS2 navigation feature. Safe, thorough, procedure-compliant, required performance, acceptable instrument flying will be assessed, no more and no less.


    I think Aerofly FS2 will be a major help to an instrument flying student. It is not perfect but coping with what you have is part of safe flying. I wish I had it in my student IR time.


    I am very fond of and respect the forum user community and do not wish to wind up any earlier contributers but please consider the requirements of the original poster. It is NOT about simulating some transoceanic flight using the current FS2 sim’s dodgy ‘area navigation’ capabilities. It IS about perfecting basic instrument flying and navigation.

  • To give some more info. All my approaches would be in the C172 (since the Robin DR400 is no longer in the sim) and programming an approach into an FMC is not important. Shame about no audio indents so I can't practice select, tune, identify and it is a shame the DME is not accurate. X-plane seems great for IFR practice but the poor VR performance is a deal breaker at the moment. I assume there is no demo version of AF2 to test performance and IFR complexity?

  • Sorry to give the wrong impression about the DME, it is accurate but sometimes it is not available with an expected nav aid, for example an approach plate might show a DME associated with an ILS but it does not appear in the sim. This is not that frequent and it makes one navigate using the published alternative such as by taking a published defined VOR cross radial to give an ILS height-position check. DMEs do go down for maintenance and sometimes might be faulty so in a way it adds to the training experience. As I’m sure you know the correct audio ident is not only an assurance that the proper frequency has been selected, it also indicates that the navaid is believed to be working and reliable. A strange ident is supposed to be an indication that a fault has been detected but that the facility has not been repaired yet or shut down.

    I’d say that the missing navaid audio idents is the biggest drawback for serious instrument flying practice but the idents do display in the glass cockpit screens and the sim is still a useful training tool, remember not everything works all the time in the real world and it broadens your experience having to make use of the back ups.

    It is a young sim and improvements and fixes appear all the time, I’d still say it is worth buying for its realism and nice flying, seeing misty hill tops in the side windows adds to the semi-vertigo feeling when trying to hold a critical track, height and heading in challenging terrain in IMC -with the sound turned well up.

    Other sims will have faults too, the FS2 ones do get fixed when people raise them here, providing IPACS prioritise them.

    One very nice feaure in FS2 is that you can quickly adjust the zoom so I like to zoom well in until only the central instruments are visible, the magnification allows more life-like interaction with subtle instrument movements easily missed with any digital computer screen. This is a big help in instrument flying realism.

  • To give some more info. All my approaches would be in the C172 (since the Robin DR400 is no longer in the sim) and programming an approach into an FMC is not important. Shame about no audio indents so I can't practice select, tune, identify and it is a shame the DME is not accurate. X-plane seems great for IFR practice but the poor VR performance is a deal breaker at the moment. I assume there is no demo version of AF2 to test performance and IFR complexity?

    I think there is a way of getting the Robin DR400 into the Sim with the Aerofly SDK. There is a tutorial somewhere. Someone else might be able to help you with that.

  • I am not using the mobile version of AF2 anymore as my ipads are pretty old and so have low performance and my new tablet is a surface go and so is on windows 10 rather than ios or android.


    I have done some instrument flying on the mobile app but found only one approach that could be done due to not being able to adjust VOR radial.


    I also have a desktop with an 8700k at 5GHz and a GTX1080 that I use for VR so would be looking at the desktop version. Shame IPACS don't do a demo so I can compare to xplane.