IF how to greatly improve ATC || ATC only update idea


#1

Hello guys,
After my couple of visits to my local atc facility I have tried to determine what we do not have yet that they do. I concentrated on things that are doable and that aren’t too complicated to get used to. I also thought of solutions to some features so that it can be adapted to our way of controlling (which means it’s not exactly what they have).

I have have made a list of features and linked them to their feature request topic if they have one. What I am hoping is that those topics which now don’t have many votes get some. Some really have small ideas of things to implement but they actually have a really big impact in my opinion for the atc part of the sim. I am also hoping that by doing this staff will maybe look into doing an update just for atc (as in a big one with lots of new tools). I can understand that their main goal is to make the sim attractive to new customers but I have a few arguments that show why it would boost it on the long therm.

So like I said FDS want the sim to be attractive. Showing lots of liveries and planes obviously is brilliant and they’re doing an excellent job. But think about it, there’s a big part of the sim which is ATC. It’s the best sim for ATC out there in my opinion (on mobile) since there aren’t many anyway. So why not try to promote that side of the sim even more?! Making that part better also means the flying part will be better on long therm. We will have people installing IF just for ATC and they will become expert controllers. More controllers=more open atc frequencies. It makes it even better for pilots and more and more realistic. And on a shorter therm… having better possibilities for us air traffic controllers means that we will manage more traffic and it will make it more realistic for both us and pilots. This is why I think a full ATC update would really be worth it for ATC, pilots and FDS.

Now let’s get to this list. Here’s what I thought of. Please choose your favourite topics and go vote for them! The more the votes the more likely they’ll do this such needed update!

The list you’ve been waiting for

ATIS:

No direct RW crossing ATIS || no direct RW crossing

ILS approaches only

Approach:

Map:

Terrain map

Custom waypoints Approach/Pilot waypoint feature request

Custom routes Map sketching (radar frequencies)

Display:

Waypoints and VORs seen when de zoomed Make vors and fixes seen without zooming in so close

Seeing pilots FPL ATC and Flight Plans

Airspeed visible too

Become green when cleared Aircraft tag become green when cleared on approach

Lock aircraft tag Lock Aircraft tag on approach

swipe aircraft directly on radar screen ATC || swipe aircraft directly on radar screen

Remove data tag after swiping flight strip Remove data tag when swiping flight strip away

Custom map (second one zoomed on localiser) ATC || Customise different views on radar and camera

Commands:

Deny because pattern not allowed (check atis)

VS command

Procedure:

Contact further than 50nm or everyone at 50

Tower:

Tool:

Drag and time feature ATC Drag and time feature

Display:

Customise map (zoom on runway end) ATC || Customise different views on radar and camera
Aid to visualise sequencing Enhanced Radar Map for Sequencing

Command:

Line up behind ATC Commands

Speed commands Tower ability to issue speed restrictions

Altitude command (go around stay underneath)

Exit via xyz Exit Runway Via… Turn Onto Taxiway…

Maintain runway heading “Maintain Runway Heading” Instruction

Approaching the wrong runway end warning An ATC warning if someone approaches to the wrong runway

Maintain separation with nearby traffic command

Ground:

Tool:

Drag and taxi “Drag and Taxi” Feature

Commands:

Follow x aircraft ATC Ground - “Follow X Aircraft”

Aircraft too big for gate

Display:

Cuatomise map (zoom on localiser to see if runway soon in use) ATC || Customise different views on radar and camera

Taxiway map Improved Ground ATC Experience

See more aircrafts on ground Tap to Show Aircraft for ATC

Customise camera angles (different parts of airport) Tower split screen view for Air Traffic Controllers

Special ground camera angle New ATC camera option

Procedure:

Gate reservation Gate Bookings | Infinite Flight Ground

Departure:

Map:

Terrain map

Custom waypoints Approach/Pilot waypoint feature request

Custom routes Map sketching (radar frequencies)

Commands:

VS command

Display:

Custom map (second one zoomed on localiser)ATC || Customise different views on radar and camera

Waypoints and VORs seen when de zoomed Make vors and fixes seen without zooming in so close

Airspeed visible too

Remove data tag after swiping flight strip Remove data tag when swiping flight strip away

swipe aircraft directly on radar screen ATC || swipe aircraft directly on radar screen

Procedure:

Preferred cruise altitude File Cruising Altitude in Flight Plan

Unlikely possibilitie (needs some more thinking as to how to implement):

Procedure:

Clearance delivery Clearance Delivery Frequency

Slot system

Center Center Control - Automatically Control Aircraft

If Center comes:

Map:

Custom waypoints Approach/Pilot waypoint feature request

Custom routes Map sketching (radar frequencies)

Display:

Waypoints and VORs seen when de zoomed Make vors and fixes seen without zooming in so close

Custom map (second one zoomed on certain parts)ATC || Customise different views on radar and camera

Airspeed visible too

Lock aircraft tag Lock Aircraft tag on approach

Remove data tag after swiping flight strip Remove data tag when swiping flight strip away

Seeing pilots FPL ATC and Flight Plans

Commands:

VS command

Procedure:

Preferred cruise altitude File Cruising Altitude in Flight Plan

other:

Reminder if checking help pages if user got one on the last flight Notice: Check Help Pages

change airlines callsign to match their icao airline code Change airline’s callsign to match their ICAO airline code

There are a few features that haven’t been requested yet so here’s the explanation and reason for them

Terrain map

To make it simple I was thinking of a minimum vectoring altitude map. That’s what they use here at LSGG and I think we could easily use that. It doesn’t have to be the official one for the airport as with some code it can be made (an approximation that’s already helpful.) @DenverChris is already working on something similar for his website but unfortunately he probably won’t have time to finish the MSA kind due to work. (But he’ll do normal terrain!)
Here’s what it could look like:

Airspeed visible too

This is would be handy if for example you want a plane to slow down a bit but not too much. You can easily see which speed to give instead of trying to guess what speed he’s at and then subtract what you want. At LSGG what the controller had is they could see what the pilots had as information and what they selected on the autopilot. The autopilot part isn’t really needed but the info I think is

Tower: altitude command

It would be handy for example if there’s a go around. You wait a bit and then clear the aircraft for takeoff and clear for a certain altitude. You also clear the go around with a slightly higher altitude like that separation is kept and you can clear a bit earlier for takeoff. (That’s what they do at LSGG)

Tower: Maintain separation with nearby traffic

the idea is that people on tower often get too close to nearby traffic / traffic they are sequence behind and either break separation or are at risk for doing so … if egregious we ghost but it would be nice to have a command that lets them know what they are doing wrong … similar to the command “maintain safe distance from aircraft ahead please” on ground … but for tower

VS command

The VS (vertical speed) command is something that could be helpful for approach. Sometimes you have some pilots that are descending really slowly and the only solution is a delay vector or say “expedite”. The expedite command is really confusing because you have to make the link between that and the altitude. With the VS command there is no more confusion and it is more realistic. Sometimes it may be useful too in situations where there is terrain and you have to maintain a certain VS or you won’t descend fast enough to intercept the localiser. For example at VNKT it’s too risky to directly give the clearance for 6000 so the controller will keep you a bit above and on the last turn will give you the descend command. Unfortunately some pilots may not know that it’s important there to not go at 500ft/m and that is not enough… no delay vector is possible in that situation and you’ll have to go around. So this is a feature that won’t be used very often but when it is used it is really valuable.

Contact further than 50nm or everyone at 50

Here’s a simple change in procedure (not really much to ad to IF other than a tutorial and informing of the change. The problem we currently have is that pilots contact approach at varying distances. In those conditions it can be hard to plan in advance and form a good line of inbounds. The problem is that pilots can tune in really far away (if I remember correctly 200nm) which is good and gives us space to work with but at the same time if they want to they can wait until 50nm… so for example if a plane is inbound from the east and our approach line starts north east of the airport if he contacts far away from the airport we send him directly to the end of the line. If he doesn’t contact us until 50nm he might start going south east of the airport and then when he contacts us he might not be in a handy situation to be vectored anymore or he might be interfering with other aircrafts already (but we can’t ghost since he’s not on the frequency…) another problem is for example some people will stay above FL 180 and contact when they are very close (even closer than 50nm) that’s very annoying since we can’t just give a random vector away from the airport and altitude since we don’t know when he’ll have reached a certain altitude and if it may create conflict… this is a really helpful change if it comes and would greatly help approach in my opinion.

Please if you want to help all IFATC and promote even better service go vote on a few of those topics! Here I have also made a little poll to get an idea of your opinion. It is just to get an interesting stat but to really have an effect we need to promote those little topics and give them some votes.

  • Yes I would like an ATC only update
  • No, it is not a priority nor a problem

0 voters

If it’s a no please tell me why as I am happy to hear your point of view. It’s always interesting to have a little debate and different points of view😉

I hope FDS reads this post and tries to make ATCs experience on IF even better and more realistic.

Simple things can really be game changing and this is an example of why!


What to add next to infinite flight
#2

Only 1 request please, not 728!!! (joke)

No, that’s a great suggestion. ATC does need an update, but not only on the controllers side but also on the pilot side. The map needs definitely a general improvement.

However: That’s a start. More than a start. Very well done. Maybe I find a vote. Problem is I’m out of them. We’ll see…


#3

Thanks for inviting me to your feature. I taken my vote for my feature request to yours as it more detailed and more accurate than mine.
Good day!


#4

Not a feature request any longer? That’s a pity.


#5

Chris changed the category so I guess not. Maybe they’ll look at each small request instead I don’t know though.


#6

We’re only allowed one item per feature request, so this did not quialify as one. It’s just a way to get the word out ;)


#7

I disagree. Some features simply have to contain more than thing or one picture. This one here requested a major ATC improvement and added multiple ideas of how this could look like. And I rather have one big suggestion instead of 20 small ones. I really don’t like that rule. As I said, some requests are more complex so sometimes one picture or one idea isn’t enough.

But who am I to decide and judge. I don’t have to agree with everything. Anyway… Let’s hope the word will reach the right place. 😊


#8

After a few days now I see we’re at almost 90% that want this update! That really shows that as a community we understand how important ATC is. For all who voted yes please don’t forget to vote for your favourite of those requests as that’s really how we can have an impact and show our desire for a great ATC update.

You may have noticed that the thread has been moved to #atc. It’s mainly because of the format and how I requested the ATC update. However this means that there are some ideas that I posted here haven’t been requested yet. I will request them as soon as I find time to do so and I’ll update you with the links to the thread. If any of you guys have ideas I forgot or that haven’t been requested please tell me and I’ll ad the link to the topic. If it hasn’t been requested I’d happily make a request or otherwise you could make it and I’ll as the link and explanation here.(I don’t mind)

As a little conclusion to this post I really want to show how important it is to show our interest for such an update. It is partly like that that FDS may consider it and if it’s doable, do it. Voting on the pole I made obviously gives an idea of how many people would be interested, but it’s just an interesting stat. It’s unfortunately not enough (the way) to really show that we want the update. It’s by voting the proper way with limited amounts of votes the we can have an effect.


#9

So I’ve just made the two requests (that didn’t already exist) that I find the most important. I have added them to the list so go vote! I also added a new feature request garry made which I find awesome!

So here’s what’s new




#10

Would be interesting to have some of the capabilities of just the ATC side to be implemented onto a PC, specifically the use of a touchscreen PC. I think there could be some really cool data links from the interface into IF that could make controlling even better.

Also, if you were to have an ATC app/program that connected into IF, you could have it on the PC side with terrain and not worry about the device be able to handle it as much.


#11

I really do wish this was a feature, as I think this is worth one vote, but I’m not about to put out 2 votes😉😕


#12

I totally agree. Unfortunately that may be a bit unlikely. Mainly because FDS are aiming the mobile market but also because lots of us can’t afford/ have a computer. That’s one of the reasons why we’re on mobile 😉… so in my opinion if they do implement an ATC part on computer it’s only if the full app is available for computers too. Just my opinion though hopefully they think differently it would be nice to have it on a computer it would offer so many possibilities!

Otherwise what I think they did talk about is having two devices for controlling (as an option). It would be nice but again I think the amount of people that actually have two devices is small so they probably won’t do it in a near future…

Who knows though…!🤷‍♂️


#13

Little update:

I’ve made the feature request for the aircraft tag becoming green when cleared (for approach) if you want more information please follow the link here or otherwise it’s in the list now.

I have also updated the thread with a little explanation for the VS command and done a bit of cleaning up so there aren’t explanations for the topics that already exist. Here’s the explanation for the VS (same as in the thread now)

VS command

The VS (vertical speed) command is something that could be helpful for approach. Sometimes you have some pilots that are descending really slowly and the only solution is a delay vector or say “expedite”. The expedite command is really confusing because you have to make the link between that and the altitude. With the VS command there is no more confusion and it is more realistic. Sometimes it may be useful too in situations where there is terrain and you have to maintain a certain VS or you won’t descend fast enough to intercept the localiser. For example at VNKT it’s too risky to directly give the clearance for 6000 so the controller will keep you a bit above and on the last turn will give you the descend command. Unfortunately some pilots may not know that it’s important there to not go at 500ft/m and that is not enough… no delay vector is possible in that situation and you’ll have to go around. So this is a feature that won’t be used very often but when it is used it is really valuable.

Have a look and vote for your favourite requests! If you have any questions I’m happy to help!

Edit: I’ve also added this explanation:

Contact further than 50nm or everyone at 50

Here’s a simple change in procedure (not really much to ad to IF other than a tutorial and informing of the change. The problem we currently have is that pilots contact approach at varying distances. In those conditions it can be hard to plan in advance and form a good line of inbounds. The problem is that pilots can tune in really far away (if I remember correctly 200nm) which is good and gives us space to work with but at the same time if they want to they can wait until 50nm… so for example if a plane is inbound from the east and our approach line starts north east of the airport if he contacts far away from the airport we send him directly to the end of the line. If he doesn’t contact us until 50nm he might start going south east of the airport and then when he contacts us he might not be in a handy situation to be vectored anymore or he might be interfering with other aircrafts already (but we can’t ghost since he’s not on the frequency…) another problem is for example some people will stay above FL 180 and contact when they are very close (even closer than 50nm) that’s very annoying since we can’t just give a random vector away from the airport and altitude since we don’t know when he’ll have reached a certain altitude and if it may create conflict… this is a really helpful change if it comes and would greatly help approach in my opinion.


#14

If they could add more commands for approaches because aircraft often fly the wrong approach on parallel runways especially on training server. So if you could add a phrase like wrong runways approach that would be great.


#15

Yeah I understand that. It’s for when approach hands of to tower right?
If so here’s the request 😉

Approaching the wrong runway end warning An ATC warning if someone approaches to the wrong runway


#16

Little update with a few new suggestions from IFATCs.

There’s also this that would be nice to have as an option in ATIS. I’ll make a request sooner or later but not now as it’s pretty self explanatory and it’s not the most important. The message is

“ILS approaches only”


#17

Pilots should not be penalized if the ATC controller instructs an airline to fly at a certain speed. There’s a 250kts speed restriction below 10,000FT and if the controller wants to clear up the congestion or if the airspace is pretty clear, an instruction where speed can be > 250kts below FL100 can be passed.


#18

In real life they do that, but mainly on departure for heavy planes that have to go fast. On approach I have to admit I wouldn’t be a fan of it. Simply because the turns are much wider at 250kts and there would be a big difference in speed with slower planes. So I wouldn’t use it much…

However there is a feature request! I’ll go look for it and give you the link if you want to vote🙂

Edit:
Here it is. But it’s for departure really ATC No Speed Restrictions, Initial Climb, etc.


#19

I really do think that the terrain map is a must have. Especially for the approach controllers it would be a great improvement. If there would be a way around the performance issues of the terrain radar, I would love to have it back.


#20

For the moment there is a workaround. It’s ifatc.org . Really really recommend using it it’s great, and there are lots of features in progress that you will discover soon!🙂

But yes if we could have it in the sim it would really be handy. Especially for people with only one device