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Noel

How does one select an appropriate STAR/SID?

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I'm using PMDG 777 and just started to use SIDS/STARS.  Is it a case of using airport charts to decide which SID/STAR fits with my destination airport route?  Right now for SID I just pick one and see how it looks on the glass display to see if it is compatible w/ my intended flight path.

Thanks!


Noel

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Have a read of this thread:

 

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Alan Bradbury

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15 hours ago, Chock said:

Have a read of this thread:

 

Thanks Alan I didn't get to the FULL SP yet and can if the information being sought is there, but I kind of knew the basics.  My question really was:   how does one know which one to choose in, for example, PMDG's FMS, when all you have to look at is inherently meaningless labels for the various SIDS/STARS/Transitions  Does this come from airport charts?  Some other reference?  What do RW pilots use to decide which ones to pick?

Cheers and thanks again!


Noel

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Often the easiest way is to look at a source like FlightAware and see what they are using out there in the real world.

Starting with basics, you look at the charts.  I use Navigraph Desktop Charts but there  are many ways to do this.  Go down the list of SIDS (I usually only look at the RNAV procedures) and I look for one that is appropriate for my departure runway and gets me going in the direction I want to be going.  It's that simple.  The last waypoint on the procedure might be a GPS waypoint not connected to an airway so from there you use a DIRECT to get to your first enroute fix or airway.

Note some places like KSFO will have special SIDS for quiet hours (night).

Trying to use the FMS to pick a procedure will always take you much longer and be a frustrating exercise than getting used to using charts.  If you don't have a dispatcher working for you, get charts.

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Dan Downs KCRP

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From the charts it should be pretty obvious which one you should take. E.g. here is a Navigraph chart for LKPR

sid-01.png

In this airport, each runway has its own SID. If I took off from RWY 12, the SID which would take me to VENOX, my first waypoint, would be VENO3H or RWY06 it would be VENO3E or VENO6D.

sid-02.png

Looking at the SID chart, I can see that VENO3N is available only for propeller aircraft only during the daytime and goes pretty close to LKVO airport. LKVO currently see little traffic (OTOH LKKB is a military airbase so you never know what's going on there). There is a lot of NIMBYs around LKPR and these routings are there mainly for noise abatement reason.

You can of course fly "online" on IVAO or VATSIM, if a controller is online, they would tell you which SID to take. The exact rules are available to ATC and not published to pilots.

But from this chart, I would expect a jet aircraft to go through VENO3B and turboprop through VENO3N. Since I "flew" this flight in MJCQ400 during the day, I used VENO3N which looks like a shortcut for turboprops.

If you fly offline, choosing a SID/STAR is completely at your discretion, you can even use a moving map software to "vector yourself" to a final of an approach procedure. Digging into Navigraph charts can help.

However in Europe, you can't get all the information from Navigraph. E.g. VFR routes around LKPR are not published by Navigraph, you need to dig them from the government charts:

sid-03.png

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@Chock : I love your sketch in the other thread!


- TONY -
 

 

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On 1/4/2021 at 7:07 PM, Noel said:

I'm using PMDG 777 and just started to use SIDS/STARS.  Is it a case of using airport charts to decide which SID/STAR fits with my destination airport route?  Right now for SID I just pick one and see how it looks on the glass display to see if it is compatible w/ my intended flight path.

Thanks!

I use a combination of LittleNavMap (it's free), Navigraph, Flightaware (sometimes), and Pilot2ATC to determine which SID/STAR to use.

Littlenavmap will give you a graphical overlay of the selected SID/STAR, and in so doing you can select the SID/STAR that is aimed toward where you are going.  You also have to take into account winds (some airports only have certain SID/STAR for certain runways).  Navigraph does that graphical overlay as well.  So does Pilot2ATC.  Also the PMDG 777's Navigation Display and FMS has a "Step" mode where you can step thru the various waypoints...sometimes zoomed out a bit this is a crude way to go thru a potential SID/STAR, even though a big map overlay is better.

Flightaware is useful because you can select a recently flight at the airport(s) and see which SID/STAR they're using right then (if you use current real weather you might want to use the same SID/STAR they are using in real life at that moment).

Are you using the 777 in v5?  I haven't tried to move it over yet.  Supposedly an update for the PMDG 777 is coming Soontm  but we all know how soon that could be 😜


Rhett

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Mace said:

I use a combination of LittleNavMap (it's free), Navigraph, Flightaware (sometimes), and Pilot2ATC to determine which SID/STAR to use.

Are you using the 777 in v5?  I haven't tried to move it over yet.  Supposedly an update for the PMDG 777 is coming Soontm  but we all know how soon that could be 😜

Thank you Rhett.  I am using PMDG 777 in v4.5 only.   I'm spending about equal time in MSFS and P3D 4.5 now and what I really am now enjoying is dialing back, bigtime, sliders impacting CPU & GPU load in P3D.  In P3D I do flights from dusk to dawn generally because I'm spoiled by the immersion in MSFS that comes from the scenery and more and more the atmosphere as it is improving now.  Because I'm not needing to see realistic scenery during these low light times of day I can dial back sliders in P3D and this does not adversely affect the experience.  I'm too busy managing the cockpit and crew (FSCaptain) and the outside scenery is kind of ignored, or is in my peripheral vision, so it works.  The exception is in 3rd party HD airports since that scenery to do see.  If I were to start fresh I would skip all of the Orbx regional scenery and just use their Global, and as I say upgrade my major airports used.  This decomplicates the laborious install in P3D as a side benefit.

I have no desire to update to P3D beyond 4.5 which works well for its role as a 'cockpit management simulator'.  And I really like the night lighting in P3D as well as dawn/dusk sky colors are often nice.  For the sense of flying in a real world, MSFS wins that prize hands down for me.   If MSFS does not mature to accommodate P3D's stuff, then I may re-look at P3D whatever version is offered, but all indications are PMDG will release their 777 and 737 in 2022, hopefully early in 2022.  If MSFS develops to include the nice planes from PMDG, Majestic and a few others I can see leaving P3D.

I have been using LNM but did not know it had the capacity you you mention.  That's awesome thanks!

Also, can you explain why Navigraph matters?  I had an account years ago but left it unfunded since near as I could tell it offered nothing meaningful for how I was using flight simulator.

Edited by Noel

Noel

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4 hours ago, Noel said:

Also, can you explain why Navigraph matters?  I had an account years ago but left it unfunded since near as I could tell it offered nothing meaningful for how I was using flight simulator.

It offers you two basic things:

1) Updates navigation database (of aircraft FMCs if they are supported by Navigraph or through fsAeroData even the FSX/P3D database)
2) Gives you access to charts and maps (my first two screenshots are from Navigraph, thrid is a RW chart)

The navigation database updates are important because the navigation points are constantly changing. If you are happy with the old database which FSX/P3D comes with, it's OK. However a lot of things changed during the past 20 years, e.g. Europe went all RNAV, no more enroute VORs or NDBs due to cost cutting. SIDs and STARs are usually RNAV due to noise abatement. My country has no en-route NDBs anymore and even some VORs were decommissioned (co-located DMEs remained because the big aircraft use them to calibrate their IRUs so you can still tune the frequency, dme would show you a good value but your HSI would not work). This is happening in the USA as well albeit much slower.

Charts are important because ... you need to know how to fly an approach procedure, which SID and STAR goes where (and how to choose an appropriate one if you don't have an ATC online), where are the stands at the airport, the taxi routes and a lot of information about the airport itself (restrictions, noise, operating hours...) etc. Chances are that PMDG 777 is so automated you can click a button in your cockpit and it flies by itself, it tunes an appropriate ILS frequency and sets a final course, it can hopefully fly even DME arcs. However if you would have a less automated aircraft, e.g. MJC Q400 or PMDG DC-6, you wouldn't be able to rely on automation and you would need to have the charts and need to know how to read them.

At the end of the day, if you know how to program a 777 FMC with a route somebody other told you (or Simbrief spat at you), you've just scratched a surface of IFR flying. If this works for you this way and this is what you want to do in a simulator, it's fine. You probably don't need Navigraph account for it. But this is not even a tip of an iceberg, it's a snowflake on its tip. If you want to dig deeper, you definitely would need charts and updated database. These two links are a good start when looking for more information: https://www.pilotedge.net/workshops (it's from USA but most of the rules are general) https://www.peter2000.co.uk/aviation/ifr-flying/ (the hellholes called Europe and England) And ... ehm ... if you decide to learn the basics, put your 777 aside and get A2A 172 + Flight1/RealityXP GTN750 gps. It makes your life much easier 😉 .

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, emko said:

It offers you two basic things:

1) Updates navigation database (of aircraft FMCs if they are supported by Navigraph or through fsAeroData even the FSX/P3D database)
2) Gives you access to charts and maps (my first two screenshots are from Navigraph, thrid is a RW chart)

The navigation database updates are important because the navigation points are constantly changing. If you are happy with the old database which FSX/P3D comes with, it's OK. However a lot of things changed during the past 20 years, e.g. Europe went all RNAV, no more enroute VORs or NDBs due to cost cutting. SIDs and STARs are usually RNAV due to noise abatement. My country has no en-route NDBs anymore and even some VORs were decommissioned (co-located DMEs remained because the big aircraft use them to calibrate their IRUs so you can still tune the frequency, dme would show you a good value but your HSI would not work). This is happening in the USA as well albeit much slower.

Charts are important because ... you need to know how to fly an approach procedure, which SID and STAR goes where (and how to choose an appropriate one if you don't have an ATC online), where are the stands at the airport, the taxi routes and a lot of information about the airport itself (restrictions, noise, operating hours...) etc. Chances are that PMDG 777 is so automated you can click a button in your cockpit and it flies by itself, it tunes an appropriate ILS frequency and sets a final course, it can hopefully fly even DME arcs. However if you would have a less automated aircraft, e.g. MJC Q400 or PMDG DC-6, you wouldn't be able to rely on automation and you would need to have the charts and need to know how to read them.

At the end of the day, if you know how to program a 777 FMC with a route somebody other told you (or Simbrief spat at you), you've just scratched a surface of IFR flying. If this works for you this way and this is what you want to do in a simulator, it's fine. You probably don't need Navigraph account for it. But this is not even a tip of an iceberg, it's a snowflake on its tip. If you want to dig deeper, you definitely would need charts and updated database. These two links are a good start when looking for more information: https://www.pilotedge.net/workshops (it's from USA but most of the rules are general) https://www.peter2000.co.uk/aviation/ifr-flying/ (the hellholes called Europe and England) And ... ehm ... if you decide to learn the basics, put your 777 aside and get A2A 172 + Flight1/RealityXP GTN750 gps. It makes your life much easier 😉 .

Thank you kindly for all of that detail, and I think it supports my prior conclusion I don't really need it.  In the, I have no idea what the current 'real' navaids are and unless I was using the simulators to rehearse real-world flying, I don't see how it adds anything of value for me so I think for my purposes, for the moment, and FWIW that moment has been decades long, I'm probably fine w/ the default dbase.  Yes the PMDG flies by itself and my chief gripe was I didn't know how to choose a SID/STAR compatible w/ my flight plan.  Years ago I learned enough to follow navaids in much less advanced avionics equipped planes but since I got into FMS-containing planes I end up using the automation.   I am clearly, unequivocally, a notch or two or three below.....Ted Striker :sad:.  But, I have a whole lot of fun pretending :smile:.  I have a couple of other hobbies that keep me busy too.

Seriously--thank you very much for that detail!

I do still need to learn how to find SIDS/STARS in LittleNavMap.  I opened it up last eve and remain clueless :blink:.   Google....just sent me to this:  it appears I need Navigraph of something called "fsAerodata" to have this capability, so there we go!  Now, which one?  Navigraph, or fsAerodata?  This is something I think I should only need to do once, i.e. update the database as again can't see value in 'staying current'.

Edited by Noel

Noel

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I use the Aviasoft Electronic Flight Bag for charts. Not as detailed as Navigraph but more than enough for sim purposes. I keep it updated with Navigraph ARAC updates. You can look at departure and arrival procedures quickly and choose the best on, off procedures for your route. You can use it for flight planning or import your flight plan from other sources such as Simbrief. It does have a moving map as well as taxi charts and best of all it is a one time purchase rather than an expensive subscription you have to keep paying every month. I have used about three years and am very satisfied. Probably over 90% of my simming is jet liners.

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Vic green

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Noel said:

so there we go!  Now, which one?  Navigraph, or fsAerodata?  

You will need both,  see FAQ on the fsAerodata site. (for fsAerodata,) Navigraph is ok to use without Areodata.

edit..    an example of seeing a SID overlay on to the Navigraph charts :-...

0dTydQl.png

bob

Edited by onebob

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41 minutes ago, onebob said:

You will need both,  see FAQ on the fsAerodata site. (for fsAerodata,) Navigraph is ok to use without Areodata.

edit..    an example of seeing a SID overlay on to the Navigraph charts :-...

0dTydQl.png

bob

pretty slick


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Posted (edited)

It's actually very common to not even file a SID,  and even if you do it gets striped out in processing prior to reaching ATC (especially at the busier airports). ATC will then assign what is appropriate when you get for your clearance/PDC.

Edited by Dave_YVR
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Dave_YVR said:

It's actually very common to not even file a SID,  and even if you do it gets striped out in processing prior to reaching ATC (especially at the busier airports). ATC will then assign what is appropriate when you get for your clearance/PDC.

Makes perfect sense.  So now, which ATC program interacts best with in-sim air traffic, such that the experience best matches real-world conditions, in contrast to simply learning to fly SIDS/STARS?  This sounds much more compatible with what I use the sims for.  It would be cool if FSCaptain could accommodate changes delivered by ATC!

Edited by Noel

Noel

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