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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14
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3answers
2k views

Explaining a "Great Circle Route" to young Civil Air Patrol cadets

What would be an easily understood explanation of a "Great Circle Route" for young Civil Air Patrol cadets who are being introduced to aviation and navigation principles for the first time?
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2answers
856 views

What precautions should be taken when flying near the magnetic poles?

Aerial navigation is designed to primarily use magnetic headings. Consider an international flight which flies a great circle route across the North Pole, or an aerial tour around the Atlantic area. ...
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2answers
120 views

How does IRS estimate the alignment time?

In modern airliners, e.g. A320, once the IRS is starting the alignment process, there is an ECAM message that indicates the alignment time, e.g. ...
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4answers
2k views

Why do some back course operations use normal sensing?

So the LOC/DME-E approach to KASE lists for the missed approach course to use the I-PKN localizer, but then there's a note 'course outbound is normal sensing'. Does that mean that in effect, this ...
6
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2answers
236 views

Does the radial needle of a HSI automatically deflect to the correct position when tuning the NAV radio to a localizer / ILS?

At least on small aircraft, the HSI is slaved to the NAV1 radio. The NAV1 radial is selected with a small knob of the HSI. Now, when I want to fly an ILS approach I don't need to set a radial myself ...
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2answers
159 views

What are these 3 stages of twilight?

The extreme left is Day and Extreme Right is Night. In between are those Civil twilight, Nautical and Astronomical Twilight ?
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1answer
149 views

What are those polygons on the Garmin avionics navigation display?

I'm not pilot yet, just an enthusiast having some fun in MSFS2020. What do those colored lines mean in Garmin avionics?
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4answers
3k views

What navigation actions does a pilot take when simply told to "go around"?

In this recording of ATC during the 2008 crash of a British Airways Boeing 777 at London Heathrow the controller is heard to say "Qatari 011, go around". How would the pilot of Qatari 011 ...
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1answer
119 views

Can single engine/smaller aircraft turn off ADS-B?

I was just looking at the adsbexchange website, and was wondering if it was possible for smaller, private aircraft to turn off their ADS-B? I was wondering this because id figure that maybe not ...
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1answer
141 views

What is the meaning of this "Navigational Warning" and does it apply to the aviation industry? [closed]

This was posted at https://sattrackcam.blogspot.com/2021/09/an-upcoming-trident-ii-d5-slbm-test-in.html Th blog post notes something as a "navigational warning". A few days ago a ...
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2answers
644 views

Are there two navaids on the same frequency close enough to be confused?

Several RTCA DO standards require, checks for bad navaid tuning including, "In lieu of using ground-based navigation aid designated operational coverage (DOC), the system should provide, checks ...
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3answers
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If an aircraft flies straight ahead, does it follow an orthodrome/great circle?

I understand that an orthodrome (line on a great circle) is the line with the shortest distance between two points on a sphere. If an aircraft flies straight ahead, i.e. there is no wind, the rudder ...
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2answers
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In WW2, how did aircraft navigate to the carrier?

In World War 2, how did aircraft navigate to the carrier after their mission? I was thinking of something like a beacon installed in the carrier but wouldn't it reveal the location of the carrier ...
4
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1answer
193 views

How many degrees deviation from the defined final course can I have to start the descent?

To do a VOR, ILS or RNP approach, I am turning to establish the final approach course. The approach chart shows I should descend to a lower altitude for intercepting the final descent path. So, my ...
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2answers
489 views

Are sequenced waypoints still displayed on the Navigation Display / FMS legs page?

This question relates to the Flight Management System of a large airliner, e.g. Boeing 787: During a flight, when the aircraft passes a waypoint, is this just passed waypoint (and the previous ones) ...
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1answer
181 views

Do navigation databases (by e.g. Aeronavdata or Jeppesen) include company routes?

Does the navigation database provided by database providers like Aeronavdata or Jeppesen etc include company routes? How are the company routes maintained; are they modifiable by the OEMs? Is the ...
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2answers
313 views

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 ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Why does my distance calculation not match the distance given in the definition of a danger area?

I'm looking at the definition of a danger area in an AIP section "ENR 5.1 Prohibited, restricted and danger areas", and it's the following. ...
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3answers
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What are pilot position reports?

I do a lot of shortwave radio listening, and I often listen to MWARA air traffic radio transmissions based out of San Francisco for flights crossing the Pacific Ocean. When giving position reports the ...
6
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3answers
773 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 ...
54
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3answers
177k views

What are the differences between Bearing vs Course vs Direction vs Heading vs Track?

This answer from English.SE does not focus on aviation, and does not explain 'Track'. In basic, simple English, would you please compare and contrast all 5 terms in my question's title? The ...
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4answers
412 views

Can a private pilot land at any category of airport?

I'm aware that commercial pilots require special training for landing at Category C airports (e.g. Innsbruck), but I was wondering if, as a private pilot I could land at an airport such as this, ...
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6answers
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How do airliners cross the ocean without GPS?

How do airliners cross the ocean without GPS? Do they use dead-reckoning or are there navigation aids floating out there?
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2answers
725 views

Does the altitude or attitude of an aircraft affect GPS accuracy?

Of course we are assuming an effective signal is being received. I live near Idaho Falls, Idaho with a field elev of 5300ft. If I shoot an approach will GPS be more or less accurate then landing at ...
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4answers
285 views

What are some of the longest flights without modern navigation systems?

Context: As a private pilot, I enjoy preparing my flights with a mix of paper charts and iPad apps. In flight, my navigation is now often very assisted by the G1000 or iPad, relegating the paper maps ...
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2answers
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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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2answers
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Why does IRS alignment take so much time?

Home GPS systems (like your car navigator) is able to locate you in like a few seconds, but 737NG needs to align itself for 6-8 minutes. Why do navigation systems in aircraft take so long to align ...
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2answers
1k views

Can a GPS signal sent to a plane be spoofed?

Related to What effect would an air-to-air GPS jamming system have?, I'm wondering whether it is possible for a terrorist (or likewise, law enforcement) to manipulate GPS signals received by a jet, re-...
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5answers
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Why is port-starboard terminology used in aviation?

I am not a pilot - just a student & play Ace Combat sometimes Intrigued by the words Starboard & Port-side, I researched why these words are used instead of the simple ones, I found that: ...
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1answer
4k views

What exactly is tower enroute control? Is this similar to 'preferred routes'?

I am reading about 'Tower Enroute Control' and I saw this on wikipedia "Tower en-route control is a collection of published low-altitude, short-distance IFR routes through large metropolitan areas ...
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2answers
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What is the difference between conventional VOR and Doppler VOR?

There are two types of VOR (VHF Omnidirectional Range) navigation beacons; the conventional VOR (CVOR) and the Doppler VOR (DVOR). What are the differences between them? Specifically I would like to ...
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3answers
601 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
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How wide is the cone of confusion above a VOR and NDB?

I saw in book that the cone of confusion of VOR is 40 degrees, and NDB is 50 degrees of each side! Isn't it too much? Maybe it's a mistake, or old information(book printed in 2004) Clarify please: ...
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2answers
309 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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1answer
5k views

How can aircraft determine true north for inertial navigation systems?

Aircraft use GPS and inertial navigation systems in combination. Sometimes INS needs alignment (i.e. to be told where it is AND what orientation it has). How can an aircraft be be aligned to true ...
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3answers
1k views

What is supposed to prevent a commercial crew from flying to the wrong airport?

Context Obviously: Crews are skilled and well trained. In a crew of two, one can fix others confusion. There is a flight plan, ATC can inform of a deviation. GNSS / ILS / VOR / DME frequencies and ...
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4answers
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How do I convert true heading to magnetic heading or the other way around?

Is there a method by which the conversions can be achieved on the fly by using a mathematical formulae and not using specific area charts?
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1answer
97 views

Is there a regulation that defines when to use QFE or QNH for landing?

Is there an EASA regulation that says to use QFE or QNH when landing?
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1answer
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Why am I not getting the "TO" VOR flag as I think I should?

I would appreciate some insight as to what I’m doing wrong or missing. I just completed a XC flight practicing VOR/GPS Navigation. I was inbound to KLOL from KRNO with the lovelock VOR frequency (116....
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2answers
4k views

What's is the difference among ECL, CFL, RFL, TFL messages in ATM?

These are several messages to provide a change level during air navigation. Some are sent or requested by the pilot, others by the air traffic controllers, etc. There are subtle differences. Could ...
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2answers
126 views

How to figure unusable sectors if the VOR is not colocated at/near an airport?

Stemming from Why am I not getting the "TO" VOR flag as I think I should? If a VOR is not colocated at an airport (i.e. not in that airport's chart supplement page), how does one figure out ...
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3answers
343 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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0answers
478 views

I need to know how to calculate drift with a Jeppessen CR-3. Can someone help?

In my exams we are not allowed to use E-6B, just a CR-3 jeppessen flight computer and I'm having serious issues calculating W/V from other parameters like TAS/GS and HDG/TRACK. Example: Q : Given: ...
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8answers
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Why don’t airplanes use turn signals?

Why don’t airplanes use turn signals like cars do? Would this improve safety for ground operations at uncontrolled airports? Could a similar concept be used to indicate in air maneuvers? For example: ...
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1answer
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How is the terrain displayed on the ND in a A320?

When you turn on "TERR ON ND" in a A320, you see terrain info on you navigation display (ND), but where does its source come from ? if data comes from FMGS stored inside its memory, then how come it ...
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2answers
3k views

What concerns do the FAA and EASA have in 2014 with "own-ship position display" on EFBs?

I've read a couple of times that "own-ship position display" is not authorized for use on Class 1 or 2 EFBs (by the FAA), and that both the FAA and EASA are cautioning against that feature's use on ...
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6answers
132k views

What's the difference between True vs Magnetic headings?

What is the difference between a true and a magnetic heading? Why are/were magnetic headings used in aviation?
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4answers
2k views

What is the best way to give ATC a position report using only a VOR (no DME or GPS)?

While cumbersome, is it permissible when asking for a pop-up IFR clearance to state, at the intersection of WWW radial XXX and YYY radial ZZZ? Obviously, during ...
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4answers
16k views

Where is the airspace not covered by primary Radar?

Most ATC in the world rely primarily on secondary radar to know where planes are. This requires that the transponder on the plane works correctly. This means that maintenance and deployment of ...
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1answer
152 views

When I use a plotter to identify a direction from a VOR, what heading or course is it exactly?

When I use my ASA IFR plotter and I'm working off a VOR, what direction am I getting? True course, true heading, magnetic heading, magnetic course?

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