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Slick9

intelligent programming from Boeing?

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I had a great experience this weekend w/ the 777LR on a long run from KABQ-WSSS.  I was taking off from KABQ's (Albuquerque, NM) runway 8 full of fuel for the 18.5 hour looooonnnnng haul.  The weather was good, but a look at the SIDs for the airport warn of "mountainous terrain, all quadrants", a few miles from the end of runway 8 are the Sandia Mountains, clearly visible as I rolled down the runway.  

 

The takeoff roll was uneventful, but i was relatively tense as I was hand flying to 10,000 feet and the LARGO TWO departure calls for a vectored 180 degree turn right after takeoff.  At some point after liftoff and cleanup I noticed a yellow "TYRE" message popup on the EICAS.  #####? was my first reaction, I immediately called for the FO to display the GEAR page on the MPD? The problem was immediately obvious, we were showing "0" pressure on the third inner tyre on the left gear truck. Apparently we had blown a tyre on our takeoff roll.  A quick review of the Non-Normal Checklist suggests the only action the flight crew needs to take is not to use the auto brake during landing.  As the flight progressed, though, I kept a close watch on the various system pages just in case the blown tyre caused some other damage that the aircraft did not detect immediately.

 

What I thought was cool, but I'm not 100% sure of was that the "TYRE" warning indication did not pop up on the EICAS until we were cleaned up.  I was concentrating heavily on maintaining speed and navigation during the climb out so the warning may have popped up before and I just didn't notice it, I doubt it though. I believe I remember Capt. Randazzo, or Ryan mentioning something about certain warning being inhibited until it was safe for the crew to attend to them.   Anyway, I thought this was a pretty smart piece of programming from Boeing, because the last thing I needed as I was turning 180degrees, at low altitude and heavy weight was the distraction of a warning message.  Kudos to PMDG for a faithful representation of this masterpiece aircraft.

 

Richard Bansa

 

ps If I had one bone to pick w/ Boeing though it would be w/ the ALTN page on the CDU.  THe weather on ALTN when requested seems to me to display the weather at your current altitude over the particular alternate airport.  I could be wrong, but I was seeing the winds at the alternates around 50 mph and the temps around -26. If I had to divert, I would much prefer to see the weather conditions on the field itself. Of course I could be missing the logic behind the way they programmed this. 

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ps If I had one bone to pick w/ Boeing though it would be w/ the ALTN page on the CDU.  THe weather on ALTN when requested seems to me to display the weather at your current altitude over the particular alternate airport.  I could be wrong, but I was seeing the winds at the alternates around 50 mph and the temps around -26. If I had to divert, I would much prefer to see the weather conditions on the field itself. Of course I could be missing the logic behind the way they programmed this. 

 

I don't think this is a Boeing issue. I believe it's simply how you've configured your options under PMDG SETUP > OPTIONS > SIMULATION [PAGE 7/7]: INCLUDE ALTNS IN PLN.

 

You must set this to ON. Otherwise, ASN (or other weather programs) usually only pull in weather within a certain radius of your current position, which would explain what you're seeing.

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I don't think this is a Boeing issue. I believe it's simply how you've configured your options under PMDG SETUP > OPTIONS > SIMULATION [PAGE 7/7]: INCLUDE ALTNS IN PLN.

 

You must set this to ON. Otherwise, ASN (or other weather programs) usually only pull in weather within a certain radius of your current position, which would explain what you're seeing.

 

Thnx Kyle,

 

I do have the "Include Alts in Plan" set. I wasn't getting any ALTN weather before and after some research I finally figured out I had to make that change in the CDU.  What is confusing me though is when on the ALTN page, if I hit the LSK for "Weather Request", the winds and temps do populate for the 4 alternates on the page.  But I believe for each alternate, the wind and temps that are populating (on LSK3 and LSK4)  are wind and temps at altitude overhead the ALTN, not the winds and temp on the ground at the alternate.  

Richard Bansa

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But I believe for each alternate, the wind and temps that are populating (on LSK3 and LSK4)  are wind and temps at altitude overhead the ALTN, not the winds and temp on the ground at the alternate.  

 

Interesting. Perhaps something to bring up with the weather add-on developer. I'll see if there's something on our end, too.

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LARGO2 Rwy 8 departure is turn left/right to assigned heading when weather is 5000 ceiling and 7  nm visibility; otherwise, you don't see very many Rwy 8 departures.

 

I've departed Rwy 12 (too short for B777 fueled for long range flight) in a light twin several times to find the terrain climbing almost as fast as I was... it gets your attention.  I've seen Rwy 26 departures used when landing Rwy 26.  NASA had a B747 testbed aircraft there for a long time, still might be there for all I know.

 

Nice airport, many don't realize it's higher than Denver.

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LARGO2 Rwy 8 departure is turn left/right to assigned heading when weather is 5000 ceiling and 7  nm visibility; otherwise, you don't see very many Rwy 8 departures.

 

I've departed Rwy 12 (too short for B777 fueled for long range flight) in a light twin several times to find the terrain climbing almost as fast as I was... it gets your attention.  I've seen Rwy 26 departures used when landing Rwy 26.  NASA had a B747 testbed aircraft there for a long time, still might be there for all I know.

 

Nice airport, many don't realize it's higher than Denver.

 

The "simultaneous" departure and arrival on rwy 26 sounds like something only FSX ATC controllers would do. :P  

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Thnx Kyle,

 

I do have the "Include Alts in Plan" set. I wasn't getting any ALTN weather before and after some research I finally figured out I had to make that change in the CDU.  What is confusing me though is when on the ALTN page, if I hit the LSK for "Weather Request", the winds and temps do populate for the 4 alternates on the page.  But I believe for each alternate, the wind and temps that are populating (on LSK3 and LSK4)  are wind and temps at altitude overhead the ALTN, not the winds and temp on the ground at the alternate.  

Richard Bansa

That line select key, in real world will request Metars for the four airport listed in your ALTN page plus your destination. It would be the same as requesting the weather for those airports from the cummunication page (ACARS) but that is not simulated by PMDG. So in other words, the WX Request LSK is a shortcut link to an ACARS weather request.

 

The wind and temp that is seen on the ALTN page of each alternate airport is the ENROUTE wind and temp to that airport.

This is enroute performance data, not weather at destination data.

It is there to help the FMC calculate more accurate ETA and fuel upon arrival at ALTN airport. This way you can make a more precise descision as to what airport is the nearest (in terms of time).

 

As far as I know the weather request LSK should not populate the wind and temp data on those ALTN pages (I am not 100% sure though because I never use that feature to get my METARS, I just get them from the (not simulated) ACARS communication page).

 

I guess at this time our weather engines have not implemented the METAR request yet and instead just input the Enroute winds there.

Or the software developers have misinterpreted the function of the WX Request LSK?

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Thnx for chipping in Rob. I talked to Kostas, the guru of ASN and he told me the same thing you are saying Rob, namely the wind/temp data on each ALTN is the enroute wind/temp designed to help the CDU calculate fuel and time predictions.  

 

 

 

That line select key, in real world will request Metars for the four airport listed in your ALTN page plus your destination. It would be the same as requesting the weather for those airports from the cummunication page (ACARS) but that is not simulated by PMDG. So in other words, the WX Request LSK is a shortcut link to an ACARS weather request.

 

I'm a little confused because above you seem to say that the LSK will pull in METARs for the alternate airports and then in the quote below you say the Weather Request LSK should not populate wind/temp data for the alternates.  Thnx for your patience.

 

 

 

As far as I know the weather request LSK should not populate the wind and temp data on those ALTN pages (I am not 100% sure though because I never use that feature to get my METARS, I just get them from the (not simulated) ACARS communication page).

 

 

 

 

Richard Bansa

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I've slept a couple of times since I played with ALTN WX but I think this is a communications function that is not implemented. LEGS and DESCENT values are fetched but not ALTN if I recall correctly.  I never include alternates in flight plan so maybe that is why in my case.

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I've slept a couple of times since I played with ALTN WX but I think this is a communications function that is not implemented. LEGS and DESCENT values are fetched but not ALTN if I recall correctly.  I never include alternates in flight plan so maybe that is why in my case.

 Yes Major Downs, you do have to include alternates in your flight plan for the ALTN WX field to populate.  It took me a while to figure that out.  One of the things I love about the PMDG777 is as much as I fly it, i'm still finding and learning new things about it.

 

Richard Bansa

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@Richard,

 

Not sure what is confusing, but we shall get to the bottom of this, :-)

I tried to explain what that LSK should do and what it should not do, but seems to be doing.

 

That weather request LSK L6 SHOULD request the METARs for the alternate airports listed on the ALTN page 1/2......it SHOULD NOT request (nor input) enroute winds and temps, for the ALTN pages.

 

So far (talking real 777 here) I have allways had to enter the enroute winds and temps manually on the ALTN pages if I desired them there (which is not often actually).

(note: I am not talking about the winds request for the LEGs page here).

It is possibly that at other airlines the ALTN pages are pupulated with winds/temps automatically but I doubt that.

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Crystal clear now Capt Rob. There may be some confusion then with the programming of the PMDG CDU or more likely with ASN's data feed to the ALTN Weather LSK, not sure which program dictates what is displayed when a particular LSK is pressed (as far as weather is concerned).  

 

I asked  at the HiFi ASN forum about why the ALTN Metars were not being shown.  My question and the answer I received from Kostas is below (my question is in red, and Kostas' answer is in blue).

 

Good morning,

I had a short discussion
[on the AVSIM PMDG forum] regarding the weather forecast for the alternate airports in the PMDG 777 and while they are looking at the issue [Kyle mentioned he would possibly discuss it w/ the team] it was suggested that I also ask the question here. I'm not 100% sure that what I'm seeing is a problem and not simply the way Boeing programmed the CDU in the 777, so that's what I'm trying to resolve.

I finally got the correct setup to be able to pull in the weather forecasts for the 4 alternate airports in the CDU on the ALTN page. I always thought the forecast for each of the four alternate airports would show the forecast for the weather on the ground at the alternates, but I THINK, what i'm seeing instead for the alternates, is the weather forecast for the altitude I'm currently flying at above the alternate airport that I'm looking at. For eg. I was on my way from KABQ to WSSS and flying at FL350, i hit the ALTN key on the CDU and then hit the "weather request" key on the R6 LSK, once the weather populates, I select one of the four alternates airports and at the L4 and L5 LSK I am seeing temperature and winds for FL350 overhead whichever alternate I am looking at. As I said this may be the way the CDU is supposed to behave, I really don't know. The gents at PMDG are looking into it, so just wondering if you weather gurus could shed any light.

Thanks all.

 

 

Hi Richard,

this is by design. ASN generates a file (at <FSX>\PMDG\WX folder) named DEPICAODESTICAO.wx (e.g. KLAXKBOS.wx). This only contains aloft data from 6000 feet and above to be used by the T7 FMC for fuel calculations. 

Please read the PMDG-777-Introduction.pdf and look at the specifications required by PMDG as defined in the file PMDG-WIND-DATA-REQUEST-readme.txt (in <FSX>\PMDG\Wx folder)

 

Richard Bansa

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Yeah, that is what I thought.

ASN has programmed it so that when you hit the WX request LSK......you get wind and temps aloft (at altitude).....current actual winds that is...not a forcast (just for info).

Better than nothing in my opinion, but not perfect.

 

I dont use ASN....I use OPUS, and you can use it to retrieve METARs (that is actual current weather at the ground, same as ATIS......so also not a forcast) but with OPUS there is also no provision to retreive METARs via the FMC/CDU from OPUS.

I dont know if the request weather LSK does anything at all with OPUS actually.....never tried it.

 

It should be possible to program this (by PMDG).....I mean we can request and upload the enroute winds and temps for the legs page....why not the METARs.......but it would require (a lot of) programming probably.

I can live without the feature but if it was implemented that would be realy cool........much better than going into an OPUS or ASN menu to get METARs.

 

The communication part with ACARS for weather, NOTICES to airman requests, communication to ground (maybe to one of those addons that add passenger boarding and delays etc) and NAT clearance request to some ATC addon or for those who fly online......lots of realy cool stuff would be possible.

Maybe this communication part could be sold as a separate addon/plugin for the PMDG777 so it makes sence to program all those features......just thinking out loud here :-)

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I'll wait and see what Kyle has to say on this, definitely not a big issue at all.  It's just one of those "would be nice to have if it's not a PIA" things.  Thnx for helping to clarify this Rob.

 

-- at least i know my thoughts on what info i would want if i had to divert are parallel to the Boeing programmers' logic. ie. i'd want to see the METAR for the ALTNs i was considering, the weather aloft that the CDU needs for calculations don't need to be seen.

 

 

Richard Bansa

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What I thought was cool, but I'm not 100% sure of was that the "TYRE" warning indication did not pop up on the EICAS until we were cleaned up. I was concentrating heavily on maintaining speed and navigation during the climb out so the warning may have popped up before and I just didn't notice it, I doubt it though. I believe I remember Capt. Randazzo, or Ryan mentioning something about certain warning being inhibited until it was safe for the crew to attend to them. Anyway, I thought this was a pretty smart piece of programming from Boeing, because the last thing I needed as I was turning 180degrees, at low altitude and heavy weight was the distraction of a warning message. Kudos to PMDG for a faithful representation of this masterpiece aircraft.

This kind of thing is called a flight phase inhibit. Certain warnings and cautions are inhibited during certain phases of flight or if other cautions are already displayed. So during takeoff you only get the most relevant and critical information. It's a feature of all aircraft with EICAS/ECAM/MFD style central warning systems, not just Boeing and the 777. You'll find it on Airbus, the MD-11, even the Fokker 100. It's on the 744 of course too.

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