The 20.2 release introduced a new tower command for Pilots for Departure in Sequence. More information can be found in the official Infinite Flight documentation.
Prior to 20.2 pilots were instructed to only request departure when 1st in line. Starting with 20.2 pilots now have the chance to let ATC know they are ready while they are waiting in line. The goal with this command is to reduce the precious time that pilots are sitting at the hold short line before asking for take off. At a busy airport this can often make or break your departure flow trying to slot departures into a line of arrivals
Reference the picture above. These four pilots are holding short for departure.
Pilot A has asked for departure but has been told to hold short.
Pilot B is ready for takeoff as well and has indicated this by choosing the “Departure” from the menu and then “In Sequence”
Pilot D is finally ready and announced their intentions to take off as well. Even though they are physically ahead of B the controller chose to give the the next sequence being 3.
Now that we have the pilots taken care of everyone is provided a sequence for departure. Hopefully this eliminates confusion and spamming of the departure command at busy airports.
A Few Notes
- Being given a departure sequence is NOT clearance to enter the runway. You will still be given an instruction to Line Up And Wait (LUAW) or Take off. Entering the runway without permission will result in a violation on the Expert Server.
- If you forget to request in sequence it is fine. The controller can still issue you a sequence number even if you did not request.
- Please be ready for take off when you request it. Requesting it and then multi-tasking can cost valuable time in terms of ATC spacing. If you fail to respond you may lose your departure slot and will have to wait for the next chance. This is not the time for you to start your other engine or practice a ramp up.
- Be proactive, look at the radar. Take a look at the radar and see how many inbound planes there are. Depending on the runway layout you may have to wait a bit.
- Expedite means don’t stop. Expedite is used for a reason. Roll onto the runway, line up, and apply thrust all without stopping. Failure to expedite is one of the most common reasons for other pilots to be issued a Go Around. Extended abuse of this may result in a violation on the Expert Server.
How about a nugget of realism...
As you are controlling and departing planes, take a look at their flight plan and see which way they are going. In the real world controllers may stagger departures based on their departure direction which in turn creates space.
For example, in the picture above Pilot A and Pilot C are departing East while Pilot B is departing South. Instead of the controller departing the two heading East at the hold short line, they may depart Pilot B between them departing South.
This allows the controller to depart planes faster knowing where they are going while also creating space for the two East bound planes.