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captain420

Using Pro-ATC/X with PFPX, AS16, AIVLASOFT EFB, FS2Crew

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For those of who you use the following combination of apps together when flying. Could you please tell me the proper order to get the most out of PATCX.

 

I currently have been doing it this way, but if there's a better and more efficient way then feel free to share. I'll describe my steps below. Now that the new version of PATCX finally fixed the SID/STAR issue, we can see it being a bit more realistic.

 

1. Start my flight planning using PFPX... since my PFPX is configured to pull the weather data from AS16, it will automatically assign the departing and arrival runways. Now since I want to fly a bit more realistic, meaning I want PATCX to assign me the SID/STAR entirely and tell me which runways I need to use. How would I go about using PFPX so that it only finds me the route only without the SID/STAR waypoints, and without the runways? Is there a feature somewhere that will allow PFPX to behave like this? What I currently do is after PFPX assigns me a route, I just look for the ATC ROUTE and copy the waypoints in between the SID and STAR and paste that into PATCX. At the final steps, I'll usually export 2 files... the Aerosoft Airbus .flp file (since that's what I'm currently flying) and a Prepar3D .PLN file (this file is used so that I can load up into AS16 > Flight Plan and also into Aivlasoft EFB). Those steps are optional. I don't export/save the Aerosoft Airbus .flp file anymore from PFPX, since I can just cut and paste that from the ATC ROUTE section on the OFP. 

 

2. Load up PATCX and go to Import Flight Plan from CUT & PASTE or Create a new one and paste it into the Route window. There are some new features and options in PATCX 1.8.5.0 that I don't quite grasp. For example there's the option of 'Prefer ILS/LOC Runways instead of transitions'. Should this be checked or not if I'm aiming for more realism? When enabled, does this mean that PATCX will always try to assign me a runway with ILS?

 

3. After filling out everything else I will choose to FLY THE PLAN i have just made, and then PATCX pops a window allowing me to select my Simulator and an option to load flight plans for various airliners such as Aerosoft Airbusm PMDG, Wilco, etc... I'm not sure if I'm doing this part right, so correct me if I'm wrong. So I proceed by checking the Aerosoft Airbus because that's what I'm going to fly... and then at the bottom there's 3 more options: Create default flight plan, Load flightplan automatically, Add procedure waypoints (SID/STAR/Approach). Which ones should I check for realism?

 

3. Load up AS16, and load the flight plan file that I exported from PFPX

 

4. Load up Aivlasoft EFB, and load the flight plan file that I exported from PFPX.

 

5. Load up Prepar3D, my Aerosoft Airbus A320 is set to default Turn Around state... I start to load fuel/pax, and set up MCDU and load the flight plan. Request ATC for clearance so that it can assign me SID/STAR runway and all that important information for my departure. Then go into the MCDU and setup my departing runway/SID. The STAR I will get later from ATC when I'm closer to my destination airport, so I don't need to do anything else.

 

Not sure if I'm missing anything, but if you guys have a better way of doing things, please feel free to share. I also plan on using FS2Crew as well, so I won't be using PATC's checklist/automatic co-pilot feature. Does anyone know what options I need to select from PATC to allow FS2Crew to have full control over my flight? I don't want any conflicts between PATCX and FS2Crew. If you look below, what settings/features should I check to have everything working well together and for realism.

 

option2.png

 
option1.png
 

BTW: You guys may want to double check and confirm what checklists your airplane is set to. I found out that under PATCX's Data > Aircraft menu, that every one of them defaults to the Boeing 737 checklist. I'm not sure if any of the other fields are valid or not either. I would hope that for every plane that it comes with, that the values are correctly entered. Not sure how valid these are:

 

Screen_Shot_2016_10_11_at_6_35_18_PM.png

 
Screen_Shot_2016_10_11_at_6_34_41_PM.png
 
Screen_Shot_2016_10_11_at_6_34_13_PM.png
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Hi Aaron,

 

"How would I go about using PFPX so that it only finds me the route only without the SID/STAR waypoints, and without the runways?"

 

In PFPX after created a FP, under the "Flight" tab, click "Edit" a new window opens. There you have the runways, Sid and star. Remove them, click Apply...Done !

 

Regards,

 

Richard Portier

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I use the following programs in the order I start them up when doing a flight:

 

ASN, PFPX, AS A320 (fsx), GSX, FS2Crew, ProATC, EFB, FS FlightKeeper, TOPCAT

 

1. I start ActiveSky first as it will provide weather data for my addons (that do not read NOAA weather)

 

2. I create a flight plan with PFPX. I import a route from either flightaware or eurofpl. If no route is found, I let PFPX generate the route

 

3. I setup weights as per the OFP from PFPX and start the sim

 

4. When I'm in the aircraft, I will get GSX and FS2Crew started with their actions as FS2Crew pre-flight events take 30 minutes to be done

 

5. While FS2Crew pre-flight events are on the way, I create a ProATC flight plan based on the PFPX flight plan. I use the copy paste method, where I do not include the SIDs/STARs

 

6. Then I start ProATC and get my departure clearance. I then compare the clearance SID with the one PFPX flight plan has. I enter both of these to TOPCAT and see which I want to use. Normally I use ProATC's SID but sometimes PFPX has a better one selected and I will request PFPX SID from ProATC. (FWIW I don't export flight plans to the aircraft. I always enter the route manually)

 

7. I the setup EFB flight plan using copy/paste.

 

8. Lastly I start FS Flight Keeper.

 

All of this can be seen on my latest video. The description has shortcuts to my ProATC options (that work in tandem with FS2Crew), creating ProATC flight plan from PFPX flight plan and so on: 

 

https://youtu.be/2GtYTNoHkt0?t=1m12s

 

As for the questions:

 

 

 


For example there's the option of 'Prefer ILS/LOC Runways instead of transitions'. Should this be checked or not if I'm aiming for more realism? When enabled, does this mean that PATCX will always try to assign me a runway with ILS?

 

In the video I linked, I managed to explain it completely wrong (the danger of live streams). If you enable this option, you are more likely to get vectors from STAR exit to you approach. Otherwise ProATC will attempt to find and approach transition that will link the approach and STAR (thus removing the need for vectors).

 

Enabling this option can be considered more realistic as you will get shortcuts by vectors. Having said that, use with caution on airports that are surrounded with high terrain. With dangerous terrain, you will want to have this option disabled.

 

Speaking of mistakes on the video, in the ProATC flight plan, I set the same airport as primary and secondary airport. Didn't mean to do that.

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Jarkko, thanks but I'm curious why do enter your flight plan in manually? Wouldn't it be much faster and easier to load the flight plan instead?

 

Also could you or someone else here verify to see if the Airbus A320 profile in PATCX has the correct data?

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Jarkko, thanks but I'm curious why do enter your flight plan in manually? Wouldn't it be much faster and easier to load the flight plan instead?

 

I have been burned too many times by company routes that are not correct. PFPX started including mysterious FAP waypoints. Another program included SID/STAR waypoints without asking -> causing a havoc if the SID/STAR doesn't match the weather. Also PMDG's MD11 had a bug where having more than 256 company routes in the flight plans folder crashed the sim. This is why I feel safer typing in the route manually :)

 

 

 

Also could you or someone else here verify to see if the Airbus A320 profile in PATCX has the correct data?

 

I don't think I have the default profile. I have created my own that works both with A320 and the NGX. I will post it here tomorrow if you don't mind (don't have access to my ProATC computer at the moment).

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Jarkko, ahhh I see... I didn't realize that. I never seem to have problems loading my flight plans, or perhaps I never really noticed. :)

 

Yes I would love if you can share your PATCX aircraft profiles. Do you happen to have one for the PMDG 777 as well? 

 

Those are the main 3 tubeliners I fly the most.

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Here is the config I use for A320/B737. Not that different to the config you are using:

 

ProAtcGenerisAircraft.jpg

 

My MD11 config (comparable to 777?) is almost the same. Takeoff runway length set to 6500ft, landing runway set to 5000ft. I have generic placeholder values in the v-speeds because I don't use the ProATC's co-pilot for announcing the speeds.

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FS FlightKeeper

I have that addon Jarko, but have not used it for yonks as I thought it did not work with SE and P3D ? No issues ?

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Jarrkko, could you add more details on how you use TOPCAT in your mix? And how you make your decisions based on TOPCAT. Also what are your AS AirbusX profiles for TOPCAT, where did you get them from?

 

Thanks,

Dirk

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I have that addon Jarko, but have not used it for yonks as I thought it did not work with SE and P3D ? No issues ?

 

 

Sorry about that, I forgot to mention that I only use it with vanilla FSX.

 

 

Jarrkko, could you add more details on how you use TOPCAT in your mix? And how you make your decisions based on TOPCAT. Also what are your AS AirbusX profiles for TOPCAT, where did you get them from?

 

Thanks,

Dirk

 

I use TOPCAT in two phases, during planning and during flight (after departure clearance and after approach clearance).

 

During planning, I use PFPX's takeoff and landing calculations (it uses TOPCAT in the background). I will check that I can takeoff and land safely with the weights and weather for a given flight. I then include this data in the Operational Flight Plan generated by PFPX for future reference.

 

After I am sitting in the aircraft and ready to fly, I export my PFPX data to TOPCAT (there is a dedicated export function in PFPX). I then as for my departure clearance from ATC. I then know what runway ATC wants me to use. What I do next, is input the runway in use and the current weather into TOPCAT just to double check that I will still be able to takeoff from the runway I was told to use.

 

If the runway is too short, I will then check which runway would be more suitable and will then ask ATC if I would be use a more suitable runway. (If I'm looking at a very long taxi, I will also check if I would be able to do an intersection takeoff, just to save some time during taxi).

 

Same thing hold true for landing. I will check if landing is doable or not. I will also check which auto-brake setting is needed for the landing.

 

As for the TOPCAT A320 profiles, I'm not sure if this was built in or if I created it manually, but here you go (I don't use TOPCAT for loading payload or fuel, I use the Aerosoft's fuel/payload manager for that):

 

AsA320Topcat.png

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I use TOPCAT in two phases, during planning and during flight (after departure clearance and after approach clearance).

 

During planning, I use PFPX's takeoff and landing calculations (it uses TOPCAT in the background). I will check that I can takeoff and land safely with the weights and weather for a given flight. I then include this data in the Operational Flight Plan generated by PFPX for future reference.

 

After I am sitting in the aircraft and ready to fly, I export my PFPX data to TOPCAT (there is a dedicated export function in PFPX). I then as for my departure clearance from ATC. I then know what runway ATC wants me to use. What I do next, is input the runway in use and the current weather into TOPCAT just to double check that I will still be able to takeoff from the runway I was told to use.

 

If the runway is too short, I will then check which runway would be more suitable and will then ask ATC if I would be use a more suitable runway. (If I'm looking at a very long taxi, I will also check if I would be able to do an intersection takeoff, just to save some time during taxi).

 

Same thing hold true for landing. I will check if landing is doable or not. I will also check which auto-brake setting is needed for the landing.

 

 

 

Wow... by the time you did all that I've already landed.  :Tounge: Does it ever happen you actually have to change runways...? I never ever ran out of runway during take off or landing. Must be because I mainly fly the A319 whenever I fly an airliner. It's great though how deep you can go with details like this! 

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Does it ever happen you actually have to change runways...?

 

Let's just say that spectacular crashes are a quick way to learn ;) My first failures happened after I bought Orbx KJAC airport. High altitude and a short runway will easily catch you by surprise.

 

I normally fly flights generated by AirHauler. Near maximum weights and short runways equal higher revenue. This is why I fly good amount of the time on the limit.

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Jarkko, I noticed in your video demonstrating PATCX that when ATC tells you to descend/climb to a particular height, that your Altitude dial is in MANAGED mode (with the small dot to the right of the altitude). I thought the proper way to do this is to pull the knob towards you, and then dial in the altitude, this way the computer knows that you're in control of the altitude, otherwise won't it use the altitude that's in your flightplan from the MCDU? Or else wouldn't the plane be confused on which altitude it's suppose to use if it's already programmed in the MCDU under your flight plan and also dialed in under "MANAGED" mode. How would the plane know which altitude to use in this case?

 

https://youtu.be/2GtYTNoHkt0?t=46m50s

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If you pull the altitude selector, you are choosing open climb/descent. What open climb or descent means, is that the aircraft will try to get to that altitude as fast as possible.

 

In open climb the engines go to full thrust. In open descent, the engines will go to idle thrust. In these situations the aircraft will use pitch to control speed. This can cause excessive descents or climbs that can be uncomfortable for the passengers.

 

The reason I'm using managed mode is, that it's more comfortable to the passengers. The aircraft calculates a thrust setting that will result in a nice constant climb/descent. All altitude restrictions are respected when flying in managed mode.

 

I personally only pull the altitude selector when ATC tells me to expedite climb/descent. For everything else, I use the managed mode. (There is also expedite mode in the A320, but I use very rarely. Here's what real pilots say about the EXP mode http://www.pprune.org/tech-log/464946-expedite-mode.html)

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One thing I forgot to mention is that you can always check which altitude the aircraft is trying to achieve next by looking at the Primary Flight Display. If the aircraft is in climb phase, you will see an altitude target number above the altitude tape. If the aircraft is in descent phase the altitude target number is shown below the altitude tape.

 

If the target altitude is shown in blue letters, there are no altitude restrictions between your current altitude and the altitude you have selected with the altitude knob.

 

If the altitude target is shown in magenta, then there is an altitude restriction between your current altitude and the one you have selected with the altitude knob. The aircraft won't go above/bellow the altitude depicted in magenta until you have passed the waypoint with the altitude restriction or you manually remove the altitude restriction.

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Jarkko, that makes sense! Because I have been using the PULL method, which I thought was correct, and I had a lot of WARNINGS go off, and my plane became very unstable, the speed was out of control. Thanks for clearing that up with me. I learned something new today. :)

 

With that being said, I have a question about the runway departures/arrivals that AI use. Do you or anyone here know how the AI decides which runway to use for depature and arrivals? Do they use certain runways based on the weather that is being injected into the sim or is there something else at play here that I'm unaware of. I'm curious to know because there's an option in PATCX for "Use same runways that the AI are using" which I see you and me both have checked. Because if the AI planes follow the realworld based on wind, then it would make sense to have that option in PATCX enabled. But if not, then I would like to know why so I can make a better decision on whether I should disable that option for more realism.

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I want to add here, that you can export the generated PFPX plans to various locations:

 

Documents\Aivlasoft\EFB\UserData\Routes

MainSimFolder\PMDG\FLIGHTPLANS\777 or NGX

PRO-ATC-X\import\Flightplans

 

Normally I start my flight at the gate, so that AS16 is loaded and can produce the needed weather file (I often fly historical, meaning mybe an other time of day to get the nice morning fog etc.)

 

Then I plan my flight with PFPX and let it export

 

Then I load from the above locations the files into AivlaSoft EFB and PATC

(in EFB I had to manuall delete that PFPX FAP Waypoint - haven't find out to stop PFPX producing that)

When a flightplan is loaded and activated in EFB, it is also loaded in the sim if you have this action enabled. And therefore, AS has now the flightplan also.

 

Then I start PATC and load the generated file. If the clearance delievery gives me another Runway/SID, I change that probably in PFPX or TOPCAT and let calculate it new and enter it then finally into my FMC (and also the expected STAR etc.).

Accordingly I change the porcedures in Aivlasoft EFB if needed.

 

 

That is how I handle that stuff.

Interesting thread, thanks

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I'm curious to know because there's an option in PATCX for "Use same runways that the AI are using" which I see you and me both have checked. Because if the AI planes follow the realworld based on wind, then it would make sense to have that option in PATCX enabled.

 

The AI will basically try to land based on the winds that are injected into the sim. They have also rules which runways to use when winds are calm. Especially in calm situations you want to use the same runway as AI. When I didn't have this option selected, I ended up taking off with landing traffic coming head on with me. Not a fun experience.

 

Having "use AI runway" enabled has two drawbacks:

 

1. If you have disabled some runways inside ProATC's airport config, this closure isn't bypassed if AI is using the runway that you have manually closed for takeoff/landing.

 

2. You will have to wait in line for takeoff, because everyone will use the same runway. The new version allows you to ask for another runway for takeoff so this isn't as big of a problem as it used to be.

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