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jlund

Runway lights always on?

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Watching the video where the A320 lands in Seattle(at 2x speed) on rw 16L, I noticed that all three runways were lit up like xmas trees.

Is that normal in real life,or is it just the rw in use which has all the lights on?

Maybe something Asobo could implement in the future, where only the rw in use is lit up.


Jorn Lundtoft

I don't always stop and look at airplanes.........Oh wait, Yes I do.

 

 

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Normally all of the runways would be lit, unless a runway is officially closed. Even if planes are landing only on one runway, it helps them identify the correct one if they can see all of them (also refer to Air Canada at KSFO near accident).

The runway lights are normally not on of if the visibility is good enough, but at night or in hazy conditions they would be on (at sufficient brightness). The pilot can always call the tower and request a change of the lighting status, of course.

Cheers, Jan

 

Edited by Janov

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Thank you, I remember it being the same in FSX, and always thought it was just in the sim, but good to know it's also like that in real life.


Jorn Lundtoft

I don't always stop and look at airplanes.........Oh wait, Yes I do.

 

 

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Runway lights aren't on in the daytime in VFR conditions unless the pilot requests it. 

They are turned on during IFR and night VFR and IFR conditions.

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Matt kubanda

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Well, they are probably really proud of their runway lights - not only have they been on in most videos I saw during the bright day, they also added runway centerline and taxiway centerline lights at airports that don´t even have them in real life (KSEZ)... 🙂.

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It's not unrealistic for them always to be on. Just use your imagination, pretend maybe they are testing them or something.


Alan Bradbury

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@Janov do you know if it’s common to have both sets of PAPIs on?

Eg runway 16 is active, would the PAPIs for 34 be on? I’d think not but perhaps they do for emergencies. 


Nick Botica

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Normally the opposite approach lights/PAPIs would be turned off - as an added safety feature where a pilot would not be tempted to approach opposite to the landing direction.

There are exceptions to this, for example during circling-approach situations where you approach the runway opposite to the landing direction, but then circle the airport to land against the wind.

In a flight simulator where the user may want to land at any runway he seems fit I would advocate against going that realistic, though. It would be too much to ask of most but the very hardcore users to call the tower and request to use another runway than the one in use (which would of course be possible in real life and done quite a bit in low-wind situations for operational reasons).

In X-Plane there is an option to "disable downwind ILS" - this will turn off the ILS that is radiating opposite to the landing direction. This is confusing a lot of users already.

Cheers, Jan

 

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I know at certain uncontrolled airports, the pilot can activate (or deactivate) the lights themselves by clicking the mic.

Fairly certain that's not something which will be simulated though.

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19 minutes ago, RioPilot said:

I know at certain uncontrolled airports, the pilot can activate (or deactivate) the lights themselves by clicking the mic.

Fairly certain that's not something which will be simulated though.

Yep, this is called PCL (pilot controlled lighting) - usually on airports that are unattended and see little use at night, so it would be uneconomically to run the lights all night.

To my knowledge this has never been implemented in any simulator and it would be an even more confusing feature (for most) than having to call the tower and ask for the lights to be turned on 😉

It is a pretty confusing feature in real life, too - I have used it a few times back in my flight training days in Arizona, and you have to click the mike a certain number of times to get the desired result (you can switch between bright and dim as well...). So I clicked and counted and it was as trial-and-error as it sounds 😂.

Cheers, Jan

 

Edited by Janov

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On 8/1/2020 at 3:20 PM, Janov said:

Normally all of the runways would be lit, unless a runway is officially closed.

True, but not always fully illuminated. I regularly see non-active runways only have their threshold and edge lights on, while the active have PAPI, ALS, TDZ and centerline on as well.

 

On 8/2/2020 at 6:47 AM, RioPilot said:

I know at certain uncontrolled airports, the pilot can activate (or deactivate) the lights themselves by clicking the mic.

Fairly certain that's not something which will be simulated though.

 

On 8/2/2020 at 7:06 AM, Janov said:

To my knowledge this has never been implemented in any simulator and it would be an even more confusing feature (for most) than having to call the tower and ask for the lights to be turned on 😉

It's been there in FS98, maybe even in versions before, maybe after, can't remember. But it has been in MSFS even decades ago. Not to the realistic extent though with multiple mike clicks changing brightness etc., but you could activate the lights with the radio.

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On 8/1/2020 at 3:20 PM, Janov said:

Normally all of the runways would be lit, unless a runway is officially closed.

Many uncontrolled airfields do not have lights at all.
I hope it's the same in MSFS.

Edited by dilore

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On 8/2/2020 at 2:06 AM, Janov said:

To my knowledge this has never been implemented in any simulator

I think flight unlimited 2 had it?


Dave

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