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SIDs, STARs, and Approach Transitions - Worked Example

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I have noticed that a few people are struggling a bit with routes, SIDs, and STARs - especially for flights in Europe. Here is a step-by-step example of how I would go about planning a flight from Copenhagen Kastrup (EKCH) to Oslo Gardermoen (ENGM) that I hope might be helpful. I've included instructions on where to download the charts you need from the relevant real-world authorities. (1) Get a valid route from somewhere, preferably one that begins and ends at SID / STAR transition points. vRoute is a good source for European routes (the freeware version should be fine). In this case we will use the route EKCH VEDAR L997 LUNIP ENGM (2) Work out which SID to use. Charts for EKCH can be found at http://www.slv.dk/Do...w/Collection-94 Select AIP Denmark > AIP PART 3 - AERODROMES (AD) > AD 2 AERODROMES > Koebenhavn/Kastrup - EKCH. Departure charts (SIDs) start from #21 (on the second page of the listing). If you take a moment to look at the SIDs in the list (#21-24), you can see that they are organized by departure runway. Usually either rwy 04R or 22R are used for departures from EKCH, with today's winds (200 degrees, 8kt) we will be using 22R, so download the .pdf document titled "22. EKCH SID 22L/R (P-RNAV)". We need a SID that connects to VEDAR, the first waypoint in our flight plan (VEDAR is to the north-north-west of the airport). From the chart you can see that the VEDAR1C departure is the one we need. On the second page of the document you can find details of the SID routing - in this case we need to track the runway centerline until passing 2 DME from KAS VOR and until we are above 1,500', then CH386 - NOVPO- VEDAR. Initial climb clearance is FL70 (transition altitude at EKCH is 5,000'). (The name "VEDAR1C" follows a scheme that is common for SIDs and STARs in Europe: "VEDAR" is the point where the SID ends, "1" is a revision number, and "C" indicates the departing runway. E.g. the SID to VEDAR from runway 04R is called VEDAR1A). (3) With the SID taken care of we need to find an appropriate STAR into ENGM starting at LUNIP (the last waypoint in our flight plan route). Go to https://www.ippc.no/...t/main_eng.html, select ENGM - Oslo/Gardermoen from the dropdown list, and press the "Go there" button. Under the "SID/STAR" heading on this web page, just above the next section heading "Instrument approach charts", you should find two links to standard arrival charts, organized by landing runway. Winds at ENGM are easterly, 095 degrees at 5kt, so let's assume that runway 01R is in use for landings. That means we want the first "Standard Arrival Chart Instrument ..." link, the one that ends with "RWY 01L/R". Conveniently, on the second page of this document, near the bottom of the page, we can see that there is a STAR that connects LUNIP to runway 01L/R, LUNIP1L. On page 3 you can see the details of the STAR routing (note that there are both speed and altitude restrictions to comply with). Also note that LUNIP1L takes us to RUVAS, which we must cross at 5,000' or above. (4) Find the approach transition. Open the web page from step (3) again (https://www.ippc.no/...t/main_eng.html) and select ENGM again, but this time look for the heading "Instrument approach charts" and open the link titled "ILS or LOC RWY 01R" (first link in this section). If you look at the plan diagram, you can see that there are two initial approach fixes to choose between, ABUBA and RUVAS. Since the LUNIP1P STAR terminates at RUVAS, this is the one we want to use. Summarising what we have done so far: 1) Found a route: EKCH VEDAR L997 LUNIP ENGM2) Found a SID (VEDAR1C) that connects our departing runway (22R) to the first waypoint in our flight plan (VEDAR)3) Found a STAR (LUNIP1L) that connects with the last waypoint in our flight plan (LUNIP) and ends at RUVAS4) Found an approach (ILS or LOC RWY 01L) that connects RUVAS to our landing runway. Now we need to enter all that information into the CDU: Aircraft is parked at EKCH gate A14, power is established, IRSs are aligning, and position has been entered. On the RTE page 1/2, start be entering the origin, destination, and flight number: 4381_ORGDEST.png Go to RTE page 2/2 and enter the route: 8222_RTE.png Now press the DEP/ARR key on the CDU: 3923_DEPARR.png Press the left LSK1 next to the <DEP prompt, select departure runway 22R and VEDA1C SID (in whatever order) 2754_EKCHDEP.png Press the DEP/ARR key again 3923_DEPARR.png Press the right LSK2 next to the ENGM ARR> prompt, select arrival runway 01R and the LUNI1L STAR 7445_ENGMARR.png Note the two transitions next to the right LSK3 and LSK4, ABUBA and RUVAS. These correspond to the two IAFs to ILS 01R approach (step (4) above). The one we need is RUVAS, so press the right LSK4. Next press RTE to see the final routing: 6676_RTEFINAL.png8217_RTEFINAL.png All that remains now is to complete the rest of the preflight and actually fly the route. Once you get the hang of it, all this is quite simple. The main hassle is to get hold of the right charts. There is a good collection of links to real-world sites with free charts here: http://www.simforums...opic39667.html. A payware option for charts is Navigraph nDAC (http://www.navigraph.com/www/ndac.asp). Payware planning tools like Flightsim Commander (FSC) and Aivlasoft Electronic Flightbag (EFB) makes the process much faster (once you learn how to use them). Even if you don't plan to buy it, I'd suggest downloading the 30-day EFB trial and use it while learning. (The navigation data that comes with EFB is some months older than those in the PMDG, but upgrades are available from Navigraph. It should be close enough without upgrading, though). Hope this helps, / Tom

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Excellent guide Tom! im Not Worthy.gif But whats the deal with no one using rfinder now days? Are the newer ones like vroute etc better?


Kind Regards,

Dan Wela

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But whats the deal with no one using rfinder now days? Are the newer ones like vroute etc better?
I like vRoute because the routes are checked against Eurocontrols flight plan validator when submitted. But Routefinder is excellent for the cases where I cannot find a route vRoute. Routefinder: http://rfinder.asalink.net/free/

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The other main difference is that rfinder 'calculates' a route and, just like a car's Satnav, can sometimes produce some rather strange results. vRoute has a database of proper routes.


Bill Casey

wpigeon.jpg

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I like vRoute because the routes are checked against Eurocontrols flight plan validator when submitted. But Routefinder is excellent for the cases where I cannot find a route vRoute. Routefinder: http://rfinder.asalink.net/free/
How does vroute fair with Australian routes?

Kind Regards,

Dan Wela

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Only problem with that tool is that if there are no appropriate airways between two airports, it can't generate a route. Try ESNU-ESNZ and you'll see what I mean. Also it doesn't take NDBs and VORs into account as approach points. For example, it couldn't give you a route like: ESSA KOGAV L77 ASNIK DCT NM ESKM. (where NM is a NDB) But for MOST routes it works.


Klas Nordström

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Nice guide! I am one of those struggling people, so thanks for the effort! However, my biggest problem is getting hold of the right charts AND finding the information I need on them... But I will certainly get Route now (didn't know there was a freeware version). I also usually fly on just a few airports in Europe (four ones I have from Aerosoft), so maybe when I spend a good hour on it I will be able to obtain all charts I need for those airports... ;) And then I must find a way to learn how to read those things...! ;) Anyway, great and clear guide, much appreciated! EDITHm, shame on me... it didn't even take an hour... Could someone check for me if these pdf's contain ALL I need for there airports? Three pdf's are from the same site so they probably are (more or less) the same when it comes to completeness: EGLL is from another site. http://www.fly-sea.com/charts/EHAM.pdfhttp://www.fly-sea.com/charts/EDDF.pdfhttp://www.fly-sea.com/charts/LFPG.pdf http://www.virtualiroma.it/eventi/VARLONDRA02/EGLL.pdf If these are ok, than I suppose I've got all I need for those 4 airports...? That would be nice! I did find other links, but usually those sites had a tons of seperate pdf's and I didn't know which one I needed...

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Tom, you are a legend im%20Not%20Worthy.gif Thanks you for taking the time to explain this very clearly; it is very much appreciated. I now know where I was going wrong, with regards to transitions. It's just a matter of picking the correct one, and now that I know how to do that I should be good to go! I'm going to apply your method to the flight I flew last night from EGKK to EHRD. Hopefully I'll be able to make a better fist of it this time! :(

The main hassle is to get hold of the right charts. There is a good collection of links to real-world
This is definitely the case. However, I have Navigraph charts, but I wasn't using them correctly lol! wink.png

Ed Haslam

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Those should be fine!Normally just search for "AAAA Charts" with AAAA being the ICAO code of the airport that interests you, and one of the firs results will be what you are looking for. For Italian charts the vatita.net site is great, I think. Furthermore, by using simroutes.com to generate your route, you'll be able to download it directly into .rte format, which is what is used by all of PMDG's aircraft.


Fabrizio Sassi

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Hey, great idea and thanks for the effort.Just for whoever might find it useful, Eurocontrol has EU charts, while I suggest the NACO charts for the US. Oh yes, and google works miracles as well, sometimes. BTW Just a detail, but I find when entering the departure runway it's beneficial to first enter the actual runway as that will cancel out the SIDs that are inappropriate for that particular runway. I don't think it behaves like that the other way round. sig.gif

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I'm glad you guys liked it. A couple of things worth mentioning: * After completing the CDU preflight, you may get a "NO DES PATH AFTER RUVAS". I'm not sure exactly why as the descent is definitely achievable. Anyway, at some point it stopped complaining, and I had no problems staying in VNAV until intercepting the glide slope. * There is a relatively long segment on the arrival where you fly at 12,000' and 220 kts in a quarter-circle around RUVAS. This is just for spacing purposes, and at some point you can expect ATC to give you a DCT to RUVAS. Enjoy your flights.

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It's a great example, however maybe you'd like to add this free method for having a flightplan file which can be loaded into the FMC. It would be practical especially for long routes.Go on simroutes.com, click on generate route, and input the departure and arrival airports, and the flightplan:clipboard01dfmo.jpgThe result should be something like this: select "PMDG" format, and download the file.clipboard02eeup.jpgSave the .rte file here:plan31f55.jpgAfter this, it will be available when clicking the LSK for "CO ROUTE" in the RTE page, without having to type it manually.


Fabrizio Sassi

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Is there a way to show your aircraft traversing the route on the google map selection? tongue.png

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