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the value of flight route and flight level

Route details in a flight record  

2 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you put anything in the ROUTE field of a flight in PHPVMS V7

  2. 2. Do you put anything in the Flight Level Field of a flight in PHPVMS V7

  3. 3. Do you use Simbrief integration to get Flight Plan and OFP

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  • Poll closed on 04/30/23 at 09:35 AM

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The title of this question at first glance might seem a little odd, but let me explain

In PHPVMS V7 there is a large scale and very useful integration with SIMBRIEF and as such the Route for a flight is often passed for example to the Acars from the simbrief OFP.  Likewise when you look at the briefing for your flight level  for FMC MCDU input it is there in the detail of each flight leg.


So to set the question is to what value in PHPVMS V7 is having anything in the route field of a flight have with the rest of the system .  Yes it gets sent to Simbrief  and is used to generate the OPF but Simbrief will give you a flight plan route if there is nothing to start with been trying to work through the code for that.  Likewise the same for flight level.


Or are these fields  just there as to be compatible with migration from V5 or just in case you do not use Simbrief at all.



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1. Only if mandatory between city pairs, like a specific company route between DEP-ARR, or a route forced by ATS with special levels/speeds.


2. Only if mandatory between city pairs or needed by ATS ('cause Flight Level is subject to load-performance and wx along the route)


So having YES/NO for questions 1 and 2 is not enough, it really depends on the situation.


As an example to #1, you need to file RATVU UT35 BABSA for an IST-AYT flight, this is mandatory and published as RAD (Route Availability Document) by ATS. So I do have that route inserted to all of my IST-AYT flights (and have a similar one for the return leg).


What v7 needs (in my opinion) is a detailed "Route Database", instead of inserting the same routes over and over, we should be able to have a table (with details and maintenance options) and it should offer pre-defined/saved routes between city pairs when planning (also frontend flight details page can use those stored routes on the map, which then will give ideas to pilots between options etc)


What SimBrief gives you is another topic and should be checked before using (check SimBrief docs/forum) 'cause it does NOT auto generate always, to speed up things most of the time it gives you the last route planned between those city pairs so if someone tries a strange route (or sends in an old route from his company db) then you will have the same.


Safe flights

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Yes I know that from simbrief in that on one tour leg in my Airline I used the simbrief option and it sent me a route for a 53 mile trip that was 250 miles and what I saw on the map was the flight spelt the words "VULCAN 2 "  which may look pretty and Yes I did not fly it anyway.


I agree with the idea of a routes database in PHPVMS that you could subscribe to and use for your airline , it sounds like a great idea but the problem I see is that  who is going to be the guardian of it and prevent routes being added in a similar way that bugs Simbrief from time to time. 


Obviously a route sharing system would be nice for PHPVMS but I suspect that this will not happen because of the time involved in setting it up the storage costs for the database and obviously changes to PHPVMS for it to be used to upload and download routes.


The other factor is that the database has to be maintained using the cycle of ARINC so as to be useable for all as in a few cases each month or year certain waypoints and fixes either get removed or are re-named and so on and as such each route would need to comply with the Navdata cycle each month. 


The other thing to get interest in this facility is that one would need a sort of 'starter' database so that everyone can get some routes to start with rather than it gets going as an empty system.


What is also needed is a priority system where the likes of my friend DISPOSIBLE-HERO has a high priority in uploading and maintaining routes because of his working knowledge from the real world airline industry.  That means that somebody with a lower priority cannot overwrite his routes.  


The only other problem I see is that this system would be in effect yet another competitor to what is already there on the internet and as such rather than just copy what they do it would need to have features that give it an edge over other systems otherwise the take-up is not going to happen that well.


The technical side of things would work in a sort of Simbrief Integration where when adding a route the details are formatted into parameters and then passed to the PHPVMS route system and then on return you have a sort of PHPVMS Approved route that is updated to your files automatically,

Likewise there should be a 'maintenance' option where you can run a task or have a cron task run that updates your flights to the current routes from the database or submits your routes to be added as well if you have the permission  set to upload as a virtual airline.  That would need just a token key like the acars and simbrief use so it would be monitored.  Obviously a 'registered' uploader if they send weird or bad routes , then they risk of course being denied access to upload in the future.  All routes will be logged against who uploaded them and when and for what navdata cycle and so on.


I have a vmshost account and if more space is needed to hold such a database then I am sure Nabeel would do this for me as I can spend time in development of the tables and other aspects concerning this if he feels it would be a good thing to do.



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Also in the UK there is a standard document of entry and exit points from UK airspace so to conform to this and many other countries needs some good logic to get acceptable routes.  Generally speaking there are many Virtual Airlines dotted around the world and each is likely to have more flights in a region than other regions .  My new virtual airline covers the North Sea and northeast Atlantic over 5 countries , Scotland , Ireland ,Iceland , Norway and Faroe Islands so in theory I could cover that area with the 3000 routes I have that arrive or depart these five countries.  Likewise Disposable Hero I think has many flights around the area of Turkey and of course there will be airlines that cover areas of the United States  and so on.

If we all teamed up I guess we could get a pretty good database going that is in compliance with local ATC and Aviation Authorities regulations and controls. 

That way we can have a database that the likes of VATSIM and IVAO and others will have flight plans that they are more likely to be happy with.

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I also forgot that Simbrief always gives you a runway and a Sid and star where possible between the departure and arrival airports.  This may seem good to start with but with airports like Heathrow where they have noise abatement runway alternation many simbrief plans become useless after they swap the runways around.  Therefore it would make sense for a route database to show the waypoint at the end of a SID and only the waypoint at the start of the STAR on arrival.  That way when you get the runway in use then you just use the Sid for that runway and likewise for the STAR arrival.  The database should never have routes that include runway based sids and stars as winds and wx can cause the runway in use to be changed and so on 

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I did a simple test of what various products could give you back using Airbus A320 

I used Simbrief Flightplan Database, LittleNavMap and Navigraph Charts 

the route was from Lisbon LPPT to Vagar EKVG 

and to no surprise for me there appeared to be 4 different routes .

Simbrief , LittleNavMap and Navigraph Charts all have an AUTO-ROUTE or Calculation so which one is the best to use and which one would you send to PHPVMS Route Database

I have PFPX somewhere I think and that could throw up another route as well.


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I was not talking about a shared, worldwide route database... I was thinking about a local, VA only database with some critical (dep-arr-route-airac-active) and optional (rwy-sid-star-remarks-validity etc) fields. Which will be maintained by the VA staff. I am not after something to hurt my own mental health like providing route to different VA's, if someone is creating a virtual airline, then that same someone should be able to handle all aspects of managing an airline (or be able to create an experienced team to do that).


Personally I am already dealing with my own (real) airline's route database and it is a complex task. There are lots of people working in the background to support front line dispatchers on daily planning, so no, I am not that mad to do that for a bunch of VA's spread around the world :)


Anyway, one day (hopefully after retiring) I will convert that idea to code, at least it will be enough to fulfill my own needs. 


Safe flights


PS: There is no such thing called "best route", it depends on a lot of factors and that factors can change daily. So you can not have the "ultimate best" generated and saved somewhere, it is a dynamic process ;)

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I see now where you are aiming at ,  sounds like the database would need something like a Navigraph/Navdata upload each month and a process like PFPX where you can re-check all your route information each month.  Of course if one wanted to share the routes with other Virtual airlines then a hosted PHVVMS library of the routes could be done as well. 

[1] Virtual airline maintain their own routes

[2] Virtual airlines can deposit routes or take out routes from a 'global' shared database if they want to do so . 


I see it that way where everyone if they want can share their knowledge through the routes they build and maintain .  Having good routes helps everyone running a Virtual Airline as well as those pilots who connect with Vatsim etc.  


I do not work in Aviation despatching but I can see similarities to freight logistics which I have worked on software to do with planning deliveries and schedules to meet customer needs and driver legal hours driving regulations.

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To have a route database, you do not need something more, it is just a route database... If you want to check your routes validity/legality for each airac cycle (like we do in real world) with some code/automation, then you will need some data for sure. Navigraph and Aerosoft are the only companies providing such data for simulator usage but you may need to check their licenses about possible different usage scenarios (they may not allow you to use their data like that). Anyway, this is more deeper than just a bunch of data and it is not our topic.


It is not about sharing data or hiding information, it is about responsibility. If you are going to manage a VA, then you have to consider and cover all aspects of it. One should not build something with relying on external sources. So if a VA needs to have valid, current, usable route database, then that VA should not look outside. This is what I am saying, but you are still thinking about sharing routes between VA's :)


Safe flights

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