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dnldbllngs

Runway Assignment for Landing

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On approach to any given airport ATC only allows us to begin contact with the tower at around 30 NM out for a runway assignment. Is there a way to increase this distance to allow for a more realistic approach, or is this the way it really is in the real world?Just registered as a new user but have been reading the forums since FS98, and have enhanced my flight sim experience immensely with the help from all of you.Many thanks to all,Don Billings

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Don:In the real world:1 - VFR: You contact ATIS to get your runway information then you contact tower before you enter the Class terminal airspace assuming that you are below the ceiling for contacting approach. You do NOT contact tower for runway info if the airport has an ATIS and you will need to provide the tower with the correct weather observation letter as part of your initial contact.For instance:ATIS: KPWK information A, 1250Z (weather) landing and departing runway 16, advise controller on initial contact you have A.You: Executive Tower, Cessna, 87JA, 8 miles Northeast with Information Alpha, full-stop landing.Tower: Enter left downwind runway 16.2 - IFR: Same thing. Once "in-range" you should tune to your destination airport's ATIS. You will need to have the current weather observation when contacting tower but before that happens approach should give you the runway in use at the destination airport once you contact them. FS doesn't do this correctly:You: New York approach, Continental 5-1 with you out of FL180 for 1-4 thousand (let's assume you are about 40 miles away).NY Approach: Continental 51, roger, expect vectors to runway 4R, descend and maintain 11,000, reduce speed 250kts, cross Robbinsville at 12,000.If flying into congested airspace, you'll be flying a STAR and will continue lateral navigation along that STAR with vertical guidance from ATC. Bear in mind that ATC can pull you from the STAR as they desire and you DO NOT ask to fly a STAR and you DO NOT ask for vertical clearance to keep in accordance with your STAR plates!!!Unfortunately, FS doesn't handle IFR flight very well. VFR is a lot more relaxed whereas as long as you stay in the class E airspace and out of positive controlled airspace (A,B,C,D), you have a lot more freedom and FS ATC has a lot less to do.Hope this helps.Mike T. Unfortunately, FS does not replicate IFR ATC well in this regard.

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Contacting a tower which controls the airspace of 5nm surrounding the airport. When using a Class D airport (Tower only), you don't need to call them prior to at least 5nm. However if you listen to the ATIS you'll have what the winds were at the top of the hour and the runway that is still probably in use. If you're flying into Class B or C airspace, the approach control only controlls from 5nm to 30nm from the airport. Depending on your altitude, you probably can't reach tower beyond 30nm anyways and if you do, they will just tell to you call back when you're inside 10nm out.

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A very good and thorough explanation that brings up one more question. In real life, I believe you are able to receive the ATIS from around 150-200 miles from the airport. In FS, I normally can't pick it up until 50 miles from the airport. Is this another FS problem or do I have my facts incorrect?Curt

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Curt:You are correct. Depending on the station's location, surrounding obstructions, atmospheric conditions and your altitude you can get ATIS at least 100nm from the airport.Pilots call their OPS and report in-range (to get wheelchair assistance, unaccompanied minors, etc) 1/2 hour from the airport ~200nm and you can generally start getting ATIS around that time.FS has the distances woefully incorrect.Regards,Mike T.

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150-200 miles out??? Yes probably, but only above FL250. Down low you normally can't get ATIS until you're about 30nm out.

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Nowadays you would be using ACARS for your arrival weather anyway, ATIS would be a way to confirm the weather and any additional issues like runway closures.Rob

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>Nowadays you would be using ACARS for your arrival weather>anyway, ATIS would be a way to confirm the weather and any>additional issues like runway closures.>>RobWell not really since ACARS is an OEM option or aftermarket option. Normally only airliners have ACARS and then not all of them do, with very few large private jets having ACARS. Also I can't imagine all large turboprops have ACARS because there is a large chuck of Saab 340s that don't even have FMSs.

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Yep your right Dan, should have stated I was talking about airliners. I was thinking along the lines of long haul where you want to keep updated on your arrival weather way before being within ATIS range. It's usefull for getting a rough idea of your expected STAR and arrival RWY.CheersRob

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Thank you all for your meaasges on receiving runway assignment from the tower prior to landing. Nice to see experience at work here at the forms. Will apply your ideas.Thank you,Don Billings

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