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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21
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2answers
18k views

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 ...
6
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1answer
414 views

Why isn't the course fixed along an airway?

Why does in some cases magnetic course (not magnetic variation) change between navaids along a same airway? Isn't it supposed that a straight line in an aeronautical chart representing an airway has ...
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2answers
7k views

Is it true an ILS CAT IIIc can automatically taxi-in an aircraft?

I've always wondered how would the theoretical (since no airport/plane has it) ILS CAT IIIc guide the plane off the runway? I mean from the perspective of radio signals. What component in the ILS ...
0
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2answers
2k views

How does GPS measure any plane's ground speed?

How does GPS measure an equipped airplane's ground speed assuming that the plane in question actually uses GPS as opposed to an inertial navigation system or other method? (This was originally part ...
10
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1answer
697 views

How does an FMS shift after losing all external navaids?

It's not uncommon for polar flights to lose GPS signal (ionosphere issues due to the high latitudes). But it is not a concern because the typical IRS drift is 650 meters for every hour of flight, and ...
4
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2answers
1k views

Can I land at an uncontrolled airport under class C without talking to ATC?

In this situation, I would be flying from Richmond Executive-Chesterfield (FCI) to New Kent Co (W96). Can I land at an uncontrolled airport under class C without talking to ATC? Picture source: ...
2
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0answers
233 views

Why do IFR reporting points have odd names? [duplicate]

I was checking out some flights on FlightAware and went onto the "Route" page for a flight and I saw these IFR Reporting Points with really odd names. Is there a regulatory reason why they have such ...
19
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2answers
33k views

How does TACAN work?

How does the Tactical Air Navigation (TACAN) system work? How is it different from the VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) system? Please explain in the simplest possible way.
7
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2answers
8k views

What is the difference between fixes and waypoints on an arrival plate?

This is a followup to my other question on this topic. Figured I'd just make it a whole separate question. The plates below show STAR arrivals to KMEM. The points along the route are marked with two ...
5
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1answer
99 views

What are the names of the forces acting upon the side of a vessel?

People often refer to the four forces in navigation as weight, lift, thrust and drag. Are there separate names for the forces acting upon the side of a craft?
2
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2answers
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How can LMT be converted to UTC time?

I am trying to solve some problems on converting from LMT (local mean time) to UTC (coordinated universal time) for flight planning purposes and I have some doubts. The problem is the following: If ...
7
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0answers
69 views

What is a grid course? [duplicate]

Reviewing the ILS 7 approach at Barrow (PABR) revealed something I have never seen before: Now, I saw the note (and diagram) in the upper left corner, so I was able to infer that this is a "grid ...
7
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2answers
994 views

Why does this Garmin GMA340 have an Airway/Inner marker indicator?

On this Garmin GMA 340: the outer marker is blue and is designated O the middle mark is amber and is designated M the inner marker is white and is designated A and placed on the far left. I looked ...
6
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3answers
556 views

What are good apps to help with VFR navigation on my first solo?

Currently I am a student pilot in Spain (Barcelona) and I am 2 days away from my solo. I wanted to ask if there is any good application that will help me on VFR navigation since I'm allowed to go to ...
10
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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 ...
0
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3answers
341 views

How can I get General Aviation flight data on smartphone and/or tablet?

Is it possible to in-flight receive navigation data on an electronic device (like smartphone and/or tablet) present in the cockpit? I refer to General Aviation aircraft and navigation data like ...
12
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2answers
86k views

What are the differences between an OBS, a CDI, a Heading indicator, and an HSI?

What are the differences between an OBS, a CDI, a Heading indicator, and an HSI? As far as I can tell they all use VORs. Why would 4 different version of the same instrument be invented? Is the HSI ...
10
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1answer
2k views

What is "required navigation performance" or "RNP"?

I understand that this is some sort of on-board navigation monitoring and alerting...what is it used in? Do the Garmin G500s, G1000s, or the G430s use it? Where can you find it? I know nothing about ...
14
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3answers
4k views

How does an airline open a new route?

How do they manage to open a new route? For example Dubai-Panama. Do they have to open new airways?
2
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1answer
2k views

When is VOR navigation mostly used?

What pilots use VOR navigation: GA pilots, commercial pilots, military pilots? When is it most used?
11
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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 ...
14
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1answer
758 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. ...
3
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2answers
1k views

How does a pilot receive weather information when overflying the oceans?

As the aircraft is too far from antennas and units, how do they be aware of weather changes or weather information along their route, or on the destination and alternate airports?
10
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4answers
2k views

How do aircraft go off-course even with all their guidance technology?

Pilots today have more than enough technology both in the cockpit and in the infrastructure that supports them to know with great precision where they are at any given time. How/why do they still ...
9
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2answers
722 views

Could D.B. Cooper know where he was landing, when he parachuted?

The background story is a hijacking that happened 1971. The hijacker, referred to as D.B. Cooper, jumped from a Boeing 727 using the aft airstair. He knew in what air corridor he was (Victor 23, ...
13
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1answer
1k views

Do airline pilots routinely carry out "gross error" checks?

Malaysian MH132 seems to have had a bit of a mix up over flight plans. It appears to be a non-event but it does make me wonder if "gross error checks" are commonly used by airline pilots. I'm only a ...
9
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1answer
2k views

LPV/LP approach (RNAV with WAAS): What is actually the "channel number"?

Curious about the answer to this question: How may I verify WAAS channel number on G1000?, I just found that SBAS/WAAS use in aviation seems to be poorly explained. In particular the WAAS "channel ...
19
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3answers
23k views

What is the difference between a fix, a waypoint and an intersection?

It seems these terms are used interchangeably. Are they the same thing? Do they all refer to the points in space that are given 5-letter names?
3
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3answers
2k views

How heading bug is calculated during cross wind and tail wind?

From this question, it is been suggested to ask different question, rather than keep discussing it under comment section. How is the heading bug calculated and used for navigation when there is a ...
3
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2answers
1k views

Why was brown chosen to represent the ground side of an attitude indicator?

Is there any particular reason for having the ground represented by brown on an artificial horizon or PFD? Blue represents sky, brown represents earth, which will be used for easily identifying the ...
2
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0answers
202 views

GPS transmission from Aircraft [closed]

At the risk of being marked as a duplicate question, i am raising my first ever question in aviation. I have always wondered how/why of aircrafts positioning, ever since the "lost" plane of Malaysian ...
4
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1answer
366 views

How was this old beacon used?

I saw this beacon at an old airport; how and in what situations was it used?
2
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1answer
2k views

Where can I download the coordinates of navigation fixes/intersections? [duplicate]

Is there an exportable public database that I may get a copy of all navigational fixes and their corresponding GPS coordinates (latitude, longitude)? p.s. Only US airspace navigation fix information ...
3
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3answers
1k views

What is the primary means of IFR navigation for private pilots?

I have been doing a lot of reading into IFR navigation, and have been looking at the various instruments and systems that are used. I am going to exclude GPS here, as I have been focussing on some of ...
8
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3answers
13k views

What are the differences between a GPS coupled autopilot and a GPSS autopilot?

I'm trying to understand the differences here between an autopilot that is "coupled" into a GPS/NavCom like a Garmin 530W and what GPSS and altitude hold (like in an S-TEC 50 autopilot) have to do ...
3
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2answers
1k views

Why don't all flights use the North Atlantic Tracks (NATs)?

I had assumed that all flights between western Europe and North America would use the North Atlantic Tracks (NATs) but this answer says that, actually, only about half do. What reasons might a flight ...
0
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1answer
604 views

What does steering angle mean? [closed]

I'm reading the UAVSAR data format and in File Naming Convention section is said that if we take a typical file name: ...
4
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3answers
2k views

Which aircraft manufacturers still include Vertical Situation Displays (VSD) feature in their cockpits?

I'm curious about the aircraft manufacturer names who still interested in including the VSD on lower part of Nav Display (I read about Boeing 737 only). Are there any other guys on this filed still? I ...
6
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2answers
679 views

Is there a list of all airways?

Is there a public and current (AIRAC-cycle 1509) list of all worldwide victor- and jetairways (including the pertaining intersections)? I'm not searching for a graphical map of the airways, but more ...
21
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6answers
5k views

What will happen if satellite navigation fails?

My understanding is that aircraft use GPS systems for navigation (maybe not the only way to navigate). I would like to understand what would happen if the GPS system fails. Are there any other ...
4
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2answers
6k views

How does a pilot know if he has headwind, tailwind or crosswind?

While in cruise, without GPS how does a pilot know the wind direction? The airspeed sensors only register forward speed. Is it a matter of reaching waypoints sooner or later? And if flying on a ...
5
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2answers
726 views

Should an IFR-certified radio's automated nav aid identification feature be considered positive identification?

Should an IFR-certified radio's automated nav aid identification feature be considered positive identification? Should manual identification still be performed? Does anyone know if this is addressed ...
5
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1answer
1k views

Are directional instruments like an HSI or AHRS immune to magnetic compass error?

Pilot educational curriculum includes learning about magnetic compass errors intrinsic to their construction. A standard magnetic compass in an airplane erroneously shows turns when accelerating or ...
4
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1answer
5k views

What is a radar fix?

Sometimes fixes found on approach plates are labeled radar. What are these radar fixes and how to they differ from fixes usually found on approaches?
12
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1answer
1k views

Is the heading used near the pole?

If I understand correctly, heading is usually measure relative to the pole (either magnetic or true). Traveling at a constant heading can't be approximated as travelling straight ahead when near the ...
38
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6answers
13k views

Do pilots need to know how to use a sextant?

Can a sextant be used while flying? How accurate/reliable is a sextant, both standing still and at 500+ mph? Are sextants found in any cockpits today?
2
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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 ...
5
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1answer
255 views

What are the effects of communicating on VHF/UHF on a RMI's ADF needle?

Say you've properly tuned an ADF station in COMP mode so that the BRG needle on your RMI is pointing towards your station. Then you tune the same ADF frequency on your V/UHF radio. Does anything ...
12
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2answers
10k views

OBI, RMI, HSI... What combination do GA aircraft w/o glass typically have?

I'm learning about radionavigation, and all the various analog displays that can be used: Automatic Direction Finder (ADF) - Provides basic bearing information to practically any radio source the ...
6
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1answer
13k views

What is the relation between roll angle and pitch angle?

I was wondering about roll angle and pitch angle values. Will I get same pitch angle at different roll angles and vice-versa? For example. At its initial position, the aircraft is standing on the ...

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