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Questions tagged [navigation]

Navigation is the process of planning and controlling travel from one location to another. There are many methods of navigation using different techniques and instruments.

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How is device control software checked for quality?

Many, many reports on the now infamous MCAS suggest a software patch is forthcoming in the next several weeks that will address the confounding single point of failure with the two AOA sensors that ...
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0answers
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How was the navigation managed on jetliners before having programmable routes?

This in-flight photo provides a look into the pre-FMS era (also pre-INS), i.e., not having a programmable route. How was the navigation managed back then? (Question limited to 2-crew jetliners, or ...
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What is RNP and ANP in area navigation [duplicate]

RNAV often comes with RNP and ANP . I can't understand what they indicate ? Even in boeing 737 at the bottom of Navigation display RNP ANP are shown and this changes place to place . Please tell me ...
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2answers
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What is the difference between RTK GPS and GBAS?

My understanding is that real-time kinematic (RTK) is also a differential GPS technology to enhance accuracy by using a ground-based station to provide the correction data to the onboard GPS receiver. ...
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1answer
141 views

Is navigation around thunderheads done at the pilot's discretion?

It's my understanding that if a pilot is flying over an ocean or otherwise uncontrolled airspace and they encounter a cumulonimbus, they navigate around it at their discretion. How does this happen ...
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1answer
120 views

Can you guide me about the purpose of fine alignment in inertial navigation systems?

I am new in inertial navigation field. I have some confusion about fine alignment process of INS. I want to ask that what is purpose of fine alignment? I know by process of alignment we find the ...
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1answer
181 views

Can an orienteering compass be used in place of a protractor?

First off, please forgive me if this is a stupid question. I was given a protractor during flight training, learnt to use it and obviously works quite well. However, I've started using my old maps ...
5
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1answer
133 views

Staying oriented in VFR

This is something I have been questioning more and more often on how pilots do it. So, let's say we are flying on a new location and know very little about it. When flying around and keeping the ...
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2answers
128 views

Why are waypoints not named uniquely?

Waypoint names are not unique. Why ? This is unnecessary (it would be possible to use unique names only). It introduces potential for confusion. So why are duplicate waypoint names permissible and ...
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186 views

Did AF447 cross dangerous weather?

question Did the Air France 447 pilots endanger the passengers by not diverting around but flying straight through the weather system encountered and pictured below ? Or was this a defendable, ...
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1answer
167 views

When do pilots facing bad weather turn back (U-turn)?

Passenger aircraft are not supposed to cross red areas on the weather radar. But what if the weather system is too large to circumnavigate and red areas inside the system are too large/prevalent to ...
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3answers
141 views

How can I use an ADS-B receiver to make my aircraft visible in Flightradar24?

I recently bought a SENTRY ADS-B receiver for the aircraft in order to track the flight. How could I make Flightradar24 or Flightaware show my aircraft and how to register my aircraft on the website?
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191 views

How do pilots decide whether to circumnavigate bad weather?

How does an airline pilot decide in the air whether to circumnavigate or fly through bad weather visibly looming ahead and/or displayed on the weather radar ?
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4answers
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How can pilot remember when or where to do tasks such as changing radio frequency and change fuel tank? [duplicate]

As a student pilot, I sometime forget tasks such as changing radio frequency after reaching a location or switching fuel tank in long navigation. These tasks happen in specific time or location ...
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4answers
249 views

Can longer paths consume less fuel than the (shorter) great circle path?

Is the most fuel-efficient route between points A and B always along a great circle ? Although somewhat counter-intuitive, this comment on an aviation blog seems to suggest that longer paths (in ...
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2answers
118 views

When must airliners follow airways? [duplicate]

Please give a basic explanation of how commercial aviation traffic is routed for readers without any foreknowledge: Can commercial aircraft only follow airways like cars on highways ? Or are ...
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1answer
671 views

Are QDM and QDR the same as 'inbound' and 'outbound' courses?

I'm about to take my last test to join an airline: the simulator. I've been told they ask to perform some QDR/QDM interceptions, as well as radial ones. About QDM/QDR: QDM: Magnetic course from the ...
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1answer
34 views

How to accurately determine Navigation Accuracy from FAA's PBN Criteria (Order 8260.58A)?

I am trying to understand how to determine the Navigation Accuracy for a given flight phase of an Instrument Flight Procedure, from the US Standard for PBN Instrument Procedure Design (Order 8260.58A)....
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1answer
168 views

What route should I fly in this lost comms scenario?

As I've studied, when a pilot faces a lost comm situation the pilot considers two things which are 'fly to altitude' and 'fly to route'. For 'fly to route', the pilot follows or chooses the route ...
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1answer
209 views

What are the FAI rules for circumnavigating the world?

If I want to solo circumnavigate the world by plane as the youngest pilot, what are the FAI requirements regarding the routing? Most standard routings include the Hawaii to California leg, which is ...
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1answer
301 views

What are RNP and ANP in area navigation?

What are Required Navigation Performance (RNP) and Actual Navigation Performance (ANP)?
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1answer
167 views

Is there a serious effort underway to move from a highways-in-the-sky approach to a mesh-network approach?

As far as I'm aware, there are certain "motorways" or corridors which air traffic uses, rather than navigating more directly from origin to destination. I remember listening to a documentary which ...
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2answers
1k views

How to navigate an aircraft without GPS? [duplicate]

In case of loss of GPS: how can an aircraft not only be navigated but navigated so precisely that it can pinpoint its destination airport ? (case in point: Finland and Norway are telling airline ...
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2answers
240 views

Why do RNAV airways exist?

I assume there's some stupidly obvious reason that I'm missing, but why bother creating RNAV airways when I thought the entire point of RNAV was not needing to fly along a suboptimal preset path? I ...
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2answers
132 views

Can you broadcast a very low power nav vor signal in air?

Are there any FCC restrictions on broadcasting a test nav signal on 108.0 in the air? Or perhaps on other nav frequencies that can be received within the navigation band?
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1answer
815 views

Is there a global map of aviation waypoints?

Is there such a map or database available to the public?
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1answer
580 views

How do I do these VOR time and distance calculations?

I'm trying to figure out the calculation to these questions: A pilot tracking a VOR turns 90 degrees from current heading. The pilot notes that it takes 3.0 minutes for the plane to intercept the ...
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2answers
314 views

What are the restrictions preventing more intelligent autopilot systems?

Current autopilot system is integrated with Flight Management System (FMS) for navigation such as LNAV and VNAV; both of them are based on preset parameters given by the pilot prior to departure (IRS ...
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4answers
24k views

How did the 9/11 hijackers find their way to New York City?

It is quite well known that the airplane hijackers on 9/11 were not professional pilots. So, my question is how some people who didn't have any experience of navigating the airplanes could find their ...
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30 views

Aircraft EFIS Configurability [duplicate]

What should be the general logic to automatically switch between different pages of EFIS during failure of single or multiple displays?
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2answers
318 views

Why did my transatlantic flight meander off the great circle?

I recently flew commercial to Scotland and was tracking our progress on my iPad using Foreflight. I made a direct-to line that followed the great circle route, but noticed that we meandered off of it ...
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2answers
79 views

What does LNAV engagement exactly mean?

I notice the term LNAV engagement being frequently mentioned in aviation related discussions or in several FAA's relevant material. Take, for example, this quote from Order 8260.58A (PBN Instrument ...
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1answer
59 views

How to call a cartesian (END) coordinate system, that is referenced in surrounding air?

I'm looking for the correct/usual terminology for a coordinate system, that is moving with the wind. I do calculations in a Cartesian East-North-Down (END) system. When taking wind into account I'd ...
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3answers
2k views

Are NDBs and VORs dying as a navigational method?

I am new to aviation, so bear with me on this question: I have read in multiple places that the VOR/NDB navigational aids are dying out to GPS. Is this true? Are more modern aircraft being built with ...
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2answers
656 views

How do I determine which radial intercept angle to use?

I'm studying for the (EASA) Instrument Rating exam and I found several questions about radial intercept angles in sample exams but nothing in the books I've studied and my flight instructor doesn't ...
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3answers
3k views

How do hot air balloons navigate?

Hot air balloons are quite obviously carried along with the wind, so how can they be navigated? Choosing the correct launch point relative to the desired landing point would seem to play a major part ...
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1answer
289 views

How do I calculate the aircraft's deviation from track in this exam question?

I’ll have my PPL exam soon. I asked my instructor at the school about this question and even he doesn’t know the answer. I’ll appreciate your help. Question 22 Flight from point A to point ...
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3answers
988 views

Is there a difference between a chart and map?

Does the use or meaning of "chart" or "map" vary worldwide? Is there a difference between a chart and map?
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0answers
39 views

Explain navigation terminology [duplicate]

Can anyone Explain the following terms associated with airborne navigation using suitable diagrams: Bearing, Radial, Course, Homing, Heading , and Track.
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0answers
63 views

What are some of the bigger differences world wide in VFR charts?

While discussing Aviation Charts in this SE question, JanHudec & Jwentin commented that VFR chart symbols are not internationally standardized - including airspace names and procedures. What are ...
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1answer
121 views

How to navigate at night after a complete navigation systems failure? [duplicate]

How do pilots deal with incorrect navigation readings at night? How do they know where to fly? At low altitude do they have to know the shapes of cities and villages? At high altitude and speeds over ...
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3answers
7k views

When flying VFR without GPS, how do pilots know if they are inside controlled airspace or not?

How do VFR pilots know whether or not they are inside controlled airspace if they don't have GPS onboard?
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1answer
1k views

What means of navigation did commercial Soviet airplanes use in the 50s-90s?

Nowadays, practically all Western commercial airplanes use some kind of GNSS/GPS as primary means of navigation, sometimes paired with inertial navigation systems and user-friendly computer interfaces ...
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1answer
219 views

What is “picture flying” and does the FAA define it?

What is "picture flying" and does the FAA define it in any of their literature? Here is an example situation. You are instructed to depart using a SID. The SID states that at 1.5NM from ABC VORTAC a ...
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3answers
643 views

How did KAL 007 get so far off course?

Regarding Flight 007 that got shot down in the Soviet Union, this was reported in the New York Times: Study Says Korean Airliner Was on Its Intended Course When Downed in '83 (nytimes.com) Excerpt: ...
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1answer
2k views

What are the numbers in boxes on an A320 ND when terrain is shown?

When the TERR On ND button is pressed on the Airbus A320 Cockpit, the TERR information apears on the ND, and 2 boxes in yellow appear. What do the numbers 146 and 073 mean respectively?
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2answers
5k views

What is the difference between RNAV and RNP?

What is the difference between RNAV and RNP? I know that RNAV doesn't need monitoring and alerting, but RNP does.
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3answers
180 views

What does “inertial” refer to in “inertial reference”?

An ADIRU makes use of air data reference and inertial reference. Inertial reference calculates the heading, position, ground speed and attitude. I was wondering why is it called inertial. Is it ...
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1answer
284 views

What is the english term for “vol en ficelle”?

From what I have read online and understood, "vol en ficelle" is basically a low altitude flight preparation method that requires calculating a set of altitudes to be followed in order not to crash. ...
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1answer
210 views

How to find the distance if the points are above Earth's surface? [closed]

There is a lot of information online about how to find the distance between two points if both the points are on the surface of the earth. But no article mentions about how to find the distance if ...