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Dave
Feature Requests
We've been getting lots of suggestions. Among the top requests are 1. Seamless chart layer. 2. NEXRAD overlay. 3. Printable tripkits. All three of these are in the works, in that order. Feel free to add your own ideas to this list.
anonymous
I think could be useful to
I think could be useful to export the plans in KML for Google Earth...
Simicro
TOC and TOD
Hi, I am flying VFR in Flight Simulator X and Skyvector is really cool. Many many thanks to Dave and the team for the great job! I don't know what the printable tripkits contains exactly but for my purpose, being able to print a map with the flight plan is really useful. I do it already manually: take a screenshot of the map and then convert it to pdf to be able to display it in Flight Simulator X in fullscreen mode through a utility. I would appreciate on the plotted flight plan: - display TOC (Top Of Climb) and TOD (Top Of Descent) which would requires average climb/descent Vertical Speed and cruise altitude as inputs - display time to fly the leg, in addition to distance and heading Indicated Air Speed in the calculations would be cool too. Thanks.
anonymous
Yes! This would be awesome.
Yes! This would be awesome.
anonymous
updates
perhaps a tutorial on how this site is expected to be used... why have a page of text that you cover up with a java applet? don't you want it to be seen? (I read it anyway) when creating a flight path that approaches the edge of a chart, an option to link the next chart, at the same scale, would be nice. when I plotted Van Nuys, CA to Eugene, OR, the direct plot went off the top of the Los Angeles chart into nada-space...a blue line to nowhere. Can the next chart auto load to follow the track? don't get me wrong, glad I stumbled on this, a useful tool for preliminary planning before I order a bunch of sectionals (that will expire the week I get them most of the time!) best regards, rls, Los Angeles
myockey
myockey's picture
Mini-Map
I suggest a mini-map that displays the entire chart with an outline representing the current location and zoom level of the main display. It's easy to lose context at high zoom levels, such as when you may be poking around for a navaid in a particular area of chart.
myockey
myockey's picture
Clickable Insets
Create clickable charts of the insets found on some sectionals. For example, the St. Louis chart has an inset for the Indianapolis terminal area, and Chicago has one for Milwaukee. Create separate, clickable maps for those insets so that your users can take full advantage of the published charts.
myockey
myockey's picture
Airspace Data
It's inconvenient to scroll off-chart to lookup the altitudes and operating hours for special-use airspace. Perhaps you could implement a feature that allows for quick access to that data in the airspace region itself. It could possibly be activated with a mouse-over or a click so that it only appears at the user's request.
myockey
myockey's picture
Real-Time TFR Layer
Draw TFR regions on the chart. The FAA has a clickable map (http://tfr.faa.gov/tfr_map_ims/html/index.html) but it would be nice to have this information integrated with the other features on this site.
Dav3xor
TFR's
Current TFR's can be downloaded directly from Jeppesen in XML at: http://www.jepptech.com/tfr/Query.asp?UserID=Public Be warned that what Jeppesen considers XML doesn't have much bearing on reality. Oh, and the protocol spec is at... https://www.jeppesen.com/download/fstarfmap/TFR_Protocol.pdf This is the same place that XM gets their TFR's, so it's not going away any time soon.
myockey
myockey's picture
Chart Legends
Create a separate page that a user can bring up for sectional and enroute chart legends, such as the page you currently have to explain weather symbols on the original skyvector.com site. This legend could be used as a reference without having to scroll away from the current chart area to view the legend at the side. Even then, enroute charts only have a legend on one side, meaning the user must switch charts entirely to lookup a symbol.
rick91311
popup legend
I like this idea....dragging all the way to the side to get a reminder of that obscure symbol is, well, a drag. Maybe a CTRL key combination to bring it up? Add me to the list of fans. Very intuitive to use. Looking forward to those trip-tiks and approved flight plan use. Perhaps the ready-for-prime-time version could print the flight plan in the FAA format, with places for aircraft and pilot info in the appropriate places.
anonymous
Foreign Aeronautical Charts
The beta looks very nice, but I've always wondered if it would be possible or feasible to start including maps from outside the U.S.? Personally, I'd love some charts for Canada, but any charts outside the U.S. would be awesome.
Dave
If you can point me to a
If you can point me to a source of aeronautical charts which are not protected by copyright, or whose copyright allows for online republishing, I would be thrilled to scan them and put them online. I have written several times to the NavCanada asking for permission to scan and republish the Canadian charts. They have not been willing so far, but I will keep asking. In the mean time, enjoy the fine and free products of the FAA. I hope to include the Caribbean and Pacific En-route charts soon.
anonymous
Wow! Thank you for the quick
Wow! Thank you for the quick response. I'll keep my eye open for charts of that nature. I will enjoy it. Thanks again for all the work you do!
Tiger42R
Used to be
Seems I remember that at one time international charts were available online but many countries see aviation data as a profit center rather than a safety issue and forced these sites to take down the data.
rvanstory
Suggested content
Love the new look and feel. VERY NICE! Saw the "top 3" additions you are working on. I like all 3 but suggest changing order of "priority". Printable trips kits should be #1. Having seemless charts is nice, but pretty easy to get from one to another as it is, so not a huge benefit. Radar overaly is nice too, but plenty of radar sites to look at when getting weather now. Trip Kits however are not findable anywhere without a separate program and subscription. This one feature would be a HUGE benefit to VFR and IFR flyers in my opinion. Keep up the good work.
Randy
Dave
TripKits
Randy, You're right, Tripkits are the killer feature. Before we will allow printing, we must first change our service from "not-for-navigation" to "fit-for-flight". Version 2.0 was written from the ground-up with this in mind. We have improved our chart and navdata update procedures. We have improved our formulae and tested the results against the FAA's compsys21 program. Technically, we are nearly ready. The last obstacles will not be technical ones. Once every 'i' is dotted and every 't' is crossed, we'll need to find affordable insurance coverage for flight planning. We are hopeful that we will be able to provide all these features for no charge, but that remains to be seen. In the meantime, we hope to keep rolling out features. Have fun up there! -dave
anonymous
not-for-navigation vs. fit-for-flight
If you ever find it necessary to charge for the use of fit-for-flight maps, perhaps offering dual versions of the site would be a good idea. One, a full-fledged version with all bell and whistles including certification and insurance coverage, appropriate for "real" pilots that actually have to build usable flight plans. And a second, free version, with some still to be determined features removed, appropriate for the armchair, FSX-only pilot.
Tiger42R
Going Pay?
If the site goes to a status to be legal for navigation would this mean that the site would be going to a charge service since it would be competing with those selling paper charts?
jmzwego
NACO
I liked being linked to naco.faa.gov for IAP charts, A/FDs, etc. It felt more safe to use that way. are we assured that the way we get charts now is ok for flight?
Dave
The currency date is always
The currency date is always in the margin of the plate, so that's your best assurance. We decided to host all the PDF files ourselves because the FAA site has had performance issues. We also hope to allow you to select all the plates you want, then download them as a single PDF file for printing. Hosting all the PDF's is the first step for that feature. [EDIT:] The A/FD PDFs are still served by the FAA. Click on the image on the airport page to download.
jcoats
jcoats's picture
Flight Plan export
Would one be able to export the flight plan data (waypoint , magnetic course, true course, NM's) to a .csv or .xls for the purpose of populating another flight plan app or copy to Duats? Thanks for a GREAT site. John
Dave
We're open to ideas like
We're open to ideas like this, but want to caution you that SkyVector is still "Not-for-Navigation" We are working hard to change this, and version 2.0 is a big step in that direction, but until we're completely ready with all the appropriate insurance and certification, we're still "Not-For-Navigation" That said, If you want to point us to documentation or standards for flight plan data interchange, we'd be happy to investigate building import/export functions.
anonymous
features to add
A lot of apps with maps allow zooming to an area by click-drag a rectangle enclosing the area to zoom to. I guess that you know what I mean. No big deal. Just a thing that we are used to doing. I love this skyvector site. I tried the beta today. Noticed that the map display update is not as fast for me as the original site. Noticed that the display of weather dot and waypoint symbol is not always actually exactly over the airport symbol on the map - drawn symbol display aligned with scanned image? Thanks, Ranny
Dave
I'll look into the zoom by
I'll look into the zoom by bounding box idea. It won't be very exact, because we've got fixed zoom levels. The hardest part is the user interface. Click dragging won't work because click-and-drag are used for panning. Right-click is also already in use, so we're left with cntrl-clicks or shift-click. Openlayers uses shift-click, but I don't know how standardized that is. Performance is always on our mind. The new site serves tiles from a dedicated server, so that part should be faster. The Javascript code is much more involved, so I wouldn't be surprised if some parts of the interface feel slower, especially on a slower machine. I would suggest trying Chrome and see if that doesn't make things faster for you. See this comment for a good explanation of your accuracy issue.
coma
route and airway support
Loving the new beta (and the original site for that matter). I use skyvector routinely for route verification and flight planning. Of course, since it's not designed for r/w navigation, I have to take what I come up with and push it through another tool to get a viable nav log, such as DUATS. Feature request #1: Export the currently constructed route to a space-separated waypoint list that can be pasted into DUAT's flight planner. This way, I can construct a random route for a VFR flight (for example) using notable landmarks. The resulting flight plan could contain GPS coords, or a radial/distance from a nearby VOR. Feature request #2: Airway support. When I paste a route INTO skyvector to find out exactly what it entails, it would be great if it understood the airways. Thanks for your hard work on the site, it is much appreciated. It's the first place I come, EVERY time, when I am starting to plan a flight.
Dave
We're working on V/J/Q
We're working on V/J/Q routes. Hopefully they'll be working soon. A simple, space-separated flight plan is somewhat elusive. There are many duplicate ID's among VORs and even more among NDBs. If you examine our "link to flight plan" parameters you'll see that we include a object type and ICAO region code along with the ID. This is necessary to uniquely identify a navaid or other feature. We'll investigate DUATS to see how they resolve duplicate IDs. If they don't have a solution, we'll ignore the duplicate ID problem and just give you a plan to paste. BTW, VOR fixes are now supported on SkyVector, you can add something like SEA303030 to the flight plan. Thanks for your suggestions and have fun up there!
ctgreybeard
VOR fix?
OK, you got me. Can you point me to where the notation SEA303030 is described? I'm having trouble making sense of it. It's Seattle, obviously, and the 300 radial at 30nm but there's an extra 30 in there ... Is there any documentation on the site that describes these things that are available? Sign me confused ...
Bill W Home: KDXR Sim: X-Plane Mac
myockey
myockey's picture
It's the 303 radial @ 30 nm.
It's the 303 radial @ 30 nm. You'll notice that it coincides with the boundary of the Sea-Tac bravo airspace.
Denis
SkyVector URL for flight plan with just IDs
As you mention, your link for a flight plan currently contains object type and region code in addition to the ID for each waypoint. I understand why you would want this for complete disambiguation so that when someone creates a flight plan and gives someone else a link to it, the recipient will be guaranteed of getting the same exact flight plan. But would it be possible to support a different URL where the waypoints could be given as simple IDs? The IDs coming in via this alternative URL could be treated just the same as if a user first did a "clear" and then typed the IDs into the flight plan "add" box. The reason I ask is that I have a tool that deals with flight plans and I'd like to have a link to a SkyVector page showing that same flight plan. I guess the object types would be easy enough to generate, but I have no idea how to come up with the region code. Is there a waypoint to region code mapping readily available somewhere?
Denis
SkyVector URL for flight plan with just IDs (again)
Dave, I never saw a reply to my original question, so I wanted to "ping" you again. If you don't currently have a URL for a flight plan where simple waypoint IDs can be used, and don't plan on adding one soon, could you point me at a source of data for waypoints that contains those region codes that skyvector needs for the "&plan=" CGI argument? Thanks.
anonymous
Heli route charts
When I click on the DC heli route chart, it takes me to the Baltimore TAC chart, not the DC heli chart. Is their any way to include obstacle clearance heights (like highest obstacle) on a selected route.
Dave
Heli charts are not there
Heli charts are not there yet. It's one of the things that's holding us in "beta." They'll be working soon. You must be an EMS. We are aware of your obstacle requirements and are working on a solution. It'll be based on the USGS National Elevation Dataset and the FAA Obstacle File. Stay tuned.
anonymous
Flight plans
include STARs/SIDs in flight planning, and have the ability to export to flight simulation software
myockey
myockey's picture
I know there are some people
I know there are some people making FSX flight plan generators, but I don't know how they're accomplishing it. Admittedly, I haven't tried opening the .pln files in a text editor, but even if they're plain text or XML there's a format to which a developer must adhere. Does Microsoft publish that information or has it been reverse-engineered? Where is it available?
Mikaela Sims
I think if you want SkyVector
Fly in scheduling would be cool, too.
anonymous
Radius from airport
Is there any way you could integrate a radius from an airport feature? This would be useful for things such as planning xc's required for a license (like the 250 commercial xc). For example, 100nm @ LAF would draw a 100nm circle around the LAF airport. Just a suggestion. Keep up the awesome site!
Simicro
TOC and TOD
Hi, I am flying VFR in Flight Simulator X and Skyvector is really cool. Many many thanks to Dave and the team for the great job! I don't know what the printable tripkits contains exactly but for my purpose, being able to print a map with the flight plan is really useful. I do it already manually: take a screenshot of the map and then convert it to pdf to be able to display it in Flight Simulator X in fullscreen mode through a utility. I would appreciate on the plotted flight plan: - display TOC (Top Of Climb) and TOD (Top Of Descent) which would requires average climb/descent Vertical Speed and cruise altitude as inputs - display time to fly the leg, in addition to distance and heading Indicated Air Speed in the calculations would be cool too. Thanks.
nordopilot
List of airports by city name.....
The current Skyvector has a feature that displays a list of airports after typing in a name for the airport, city, or county...can or will this be also available in 2.0? Also, I tried using the box next to "Flight plan" in the beta version, typed in two different airport ID's (ICAO and FAA style) and clicked "enter" and "go" but it doesn't seem to be working. Have to click on the Flight Plan link and type in pop-out window for it to work.
CheleCity
WAC's
Any plans to add World Aeronautical Charts?
dmbleess
dmbleess's picture
WAC's
Or at least add the coverage outlines of them in the "globe icon / charts" pop-up map at the top. Also, could you add the current flight route on the charts pop-up map so we can see at a glance what charts of each type cover the currently created route of flight? -Many Thanks - EXCELLENT resource. Beta is an order of magnitude better than the original, and the original was excellent. Keep up the good work!
cp-amel-i
FenixDigital
FenixDigital's picture
I personally won't expect to

I personally won't expect to get any chart from any other coutry after witnessing what happened with DAFIF.

DAFIF was an aeronautical worldwide information base, very accurate and updated constantly, that even had a digital source of aeronautical charts online. At that time you simply entered the NIMA/DAFIF website and downloaded whichever chart you needed from anywhere around the world.

But then Australia complained to the US DoD that charts from Australia could not be used because they were copyrighted, therefore the US DoD dropped down the public service and now it is only available with some restrictions to military personnell on-duty only, as a source of information.

Because of this I think that what SkyVector has made is an outstanding work. A basic digital re-creation of the entire world, based on public information of terrain and airacs.

Obvoiusly improvements could be interesting (like adding toponimic names to rivers, towns and so on), but I think that the way it is is currently the besta approach you would ever have to this.

Obviously (again) I think that all the aeronautical information should be free and officially provided by all the countries in english for information and flight safety. Eurocontrol is already implementing in that way, FAA also, but other countries are selfishly reluctant to do so just due to greed. I deeply disagree with that.

Eugenio ACSP
LEPA - Balearic Islands - Spain
SAEZ - Buenos Aires - Argentina

tucsonans
NEXRAD and Mobile Access
First off, great job with Skyvector. It has become the first website I visit when planning a FW or RW flight and I now have all of my friends and coworkers equally hooked. - I would like to request better mobile support, ie. a mobile version of the site that would work well with a touchscreen smart phone. The current version does not work easily since that pan function will not work, but it is still usable. I have not had any luck getting the beta version to load at all. - Secondly, I would like to support you decision to add NEXRAD to skyvector (possibly move it to the top of the list!), since that would truly make it the one-stop shop of aviation internet support. Thanks, Clayton
stever_meebs
Direct Entry of GPS Coordinates and Fixes Into Flight Plans
I am a Helicopter instructor and I use GPS often for Off Airport and Mountain Landing training daily. It would help if students could plan their route by entering GPS coordinates into the flight plan directly. Currently, me and my students must right-click on a Skyvector spot and compare the coordinates to an applications such as Google Earth. If the coordinates do no match, right-click again at a new Skyvector spot. Very tedious. If we could enter GPS coordinates in the following formats: * Decimal Degrees * Degrees, Minutes, Seconds * Degrees, Decimal Minutes (Note: Garmin 400 and 500 series GPS use this format as the Default) * Universal Transverse Mercator Also if we could enter GPS waypoints, Victor Airway waypoints, and VFR waypoints, this would be great! Thanks
Steve
Dave
Most of that is working
In the flight plan "Add" box (not the "Go" box) Try: 47.435,-123.543 n47d35.4w123d35.7 w123d45m55.2n46d1m30.6 413058N/0881826W Special letters are nesw (north east south west) and d for degrees and m for minutes. Everything after an m is implied seconds. Spaces are for separating waypoints - use a slash, comma, or n,e,s,w to separate lat from long. You can also enter VOR fixes such as SEA303030 (303 radial at 030 nautical miles) UTM: Not likely. GPS waypoints: What are they? Victor Airway waypoints: Is there a convention for this? VFR Waypoints: If you mean like VPLDP, then they're already working. All of this, of course, applies to SkyVector "2.0", which is still in beta as of the time of writing.
anonymous
Airways
Your flight plan tool does not seem to understand airways. That's a major problem ... pilots don't generally like to enter every waypoint because it's tedious. I should be able to say DRK J96 IRK and have the planner fill in the intervening waypoints.
Dave
You are correct.
Airway support is coming soon.
azpilotdan
Airways
It doesn't appear that airways are working. Is there a special way to enter them or are they not implemented yet?
azpilotdan
Have you seen these files?
This may help you with airway support. http://aeronav.faa.gov/content/aeronav/Digital/DERS_120726.zip
DairyCreamer
Any chance to see the backs
Any chance to see the backs of TAC charts for VFR flyways and the like? With the new Hudson River SFRA, it looks like the instructions are to be on the back of that chart, and I don't see how to look at those yet. Love SkyVector.com! ~Nate

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