Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS – Aircraft Navigation System

What is a GPS?

A GPS is an acronym for GPS Direct Global Positioning System. GPS systems are commonly used to navigate on land but are also increasingly used for positioning a vehicle in space. This type of system is called a GPS Navigational System (GPS NM). In layman’s terms, this means that it gives you directions to get somewhere. A GPS will tell you where you are and provide you with information about getting somewhere else. While not a necessity, a GPS system will aid a pilot greatly in navigating, it is not necessary to get a basic understanding of GPS.

GPS display

GPS display

Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS:

Global positioning system

Global positioning system

Microsoft Flight Simulator includes a wealth of different aircraft to take control of, and each plane is relatively unique, including onboard avionics such as GPS and autopilot systems. Some aircraft feature very simplified systems, such as the JMB. Others are far more complex, such as the TBM 930 and the three default airliners. If you want to add at least a degree of realism to your flight sessions, then getting a basic understanding of these different systems is imperative.

The Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS is used to determine the position of the aircraft around the globe. Regardless of which aircraft you select in Flight Simulator X or other versions, they have Garmin GPS. You can open it by pressing the shift+3 or click the small satellite icon found in the aircraft dashboard. You can also use the view menu to display the GPS. Some are port mounted, and some are portable, and that depends on the aircraft you select. They are all equipped with buttons and small/large knobs for functions and selecting options.

When you open the GPS, you will see a small aircraft icon in the middle. It is coloured white. There are codes for the airport. For example, KJFK stands for John F Kennedy international airport, and EGLL stands for London Heathrow airport. When selecting an airport, you will see all airport codes options.

How does Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS work:

cockpit

In Microsoft Flight Simulator, most aircraft are categorized into the following types: Studded, Commercial, Commuter, Transport, Business, Military, Private, US, European, Asian, Australasia, and China. Each of these types has its own set of aircraft, ranging from commuter aircraft to some of the most modern military aircraft in the world. The systems for each type of aircraft are quite similar, but the models themselves differ significantly. The different modules are used to display your aircraft’s real-world instruments and systems for each type of aircraft. Each module groups the types, so for example, planes with low-level instrumentation (e.g. Cessna 172) use low-level instruments.

Importance of Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS:

First of all, let’s look at the importance of having a good Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS setup, as it’s a useful tool for accurately recording your flight, just as a stop-watch would be. The Basic setup you’ll need for a GPS system in a Microsoft Flight Simulator is: A Windows PC, A wireless internet connection GPS receiver (or Receiver (etnav) installed and connected to the PC, A pencil with an eraser, A notepad or pad of paper. There are two audio recording settings available on your flight simulator PC, and both settings affect how the audio recording can be stored.

The essential features of Microsoft Flight Simulator:

Microsoft flight simulator features

Here are the basic features and features of Microsoft Flight Simulator: Typical flight options like fly-by-wire, autopilot, and thrust vectoring, Flight simulation environment including realistic weather conditions, mountains, jungles, rivers, and animals, Air traffic controllers can be found at airfields to manage and manipulate the aircraft, Realistic fuel consumption and weight management, Weather FAA ratings, Course corrections, Maintenance items, Portable “burner”, GPS units, Realistic cockpit sounds, such as engine or plane noises, engine chatter and the cockpit theme song. Many avionics are available to fly, including GPS receivers, real-time air traffic, radar and even autopilot systems.

What is an autopilot, and how does it work?

Generally, an autopilot is an automated onboard system that can help pilots control the aircraft by reducing the pilot input required to keep the plane in the air. By simply selecting the autopilot function and pressing a button on the controller, the autopilot can help the pilot automatically fly the aircraft. This means that if you have landed a very complex plane, for example, a 747 that you have a lot of flying experience in, then the autopilot can help you safely take off again, making for a faster aircraft turnaround time. The autopilot is also particularly useful for turbulent conditions – for example when you are approaching to land in a storm.

Using Flight Simulator Planner:

If you like to fly from New York to Chicago, click on Flight planner, and the window will open. Then choose a departure airport and runway and arrival airport, choose flight plan type and choose the route. It is preferred to select Direct GPS and click find the way, and you see the path you will be flying and altitude. You can adjust the height if you like, then click OK.

A new window will open that will ask if you want to save flight plan and click save and another Flight Simulator X small window will pop up and ask if you’re going to move aircraft to departure airport selected on Flight plan, then you click yes, then click fly now.

If you are using the GPS you cannot create a flight Plan, so you will need to use Flight planner, and the GPS will activate it, so it is ready for use. For more info about Flight planning click here.

How to set up your GPS in the simulator:

There are a few different ways to get a basic GPS setup within Microsoft Flight Simulator and a few websites that will have a built-in GPS. All you need to do is find the aircraft you wish to fly and click the ‘GPS icon in the top-right corner. The window will be provided with an outline of the aircraft, which you can adjust to form your own contour. From there, you need to select the location you wish to fly to. If you cannot find a suitable flight plan at your location, click the ‘flight plan’ link. The flight plan search tab will allow you to find a location suitable for your flight plan.

Flight plan navigation Options:

When designing your own courses, you are going to be continually wanting to move your aircraft. Whether you want to race, turn, or make a long, straight run, there is no better way to stay on course than first to plan a course. A simple flight plan can guide you through your flight, and it is simple to make a course with air traffic control precisely placed in the middle. When flying with air traffic control (ATC) on a computer game, you will need to know how to work the GPS system. If you are not familiar with how to work a GPS system or are not a regular user of the technology, then this article will help to explain the primary navigation method used by Flight Simulator.

Adding Destinations:

runway map

While you might have your name at the bottom of the paper flight plan, it is not really very helpful if you do not know where you want to fly. If you’re going to find and fly unique locations, you will need to understand how to input destination points to the plane’s flight management system. Navigation using hand-drawn maps or paper flight plans is an inefficient process as the maps are usually at least an hour old, and there is a tendency for you to fly in the wrong direction once you start. While it would be ideal to have a few months of flight data, you will need to make do with what you have. First, we will want to find a list of suitable destinations to fly to. You can do this by creating your own airway map and then inputting each flight plan from Google Flight.

Accessing the GPS:

accessing the gps

accessing the gps

After the program load, you will see the aircraft on the runway and the cockpit display. Open it by pressing shift+f3, and you will see the route between New York and Los Angeles. To scale the map, zoom in or out by clicking the triangle icon.

After you take off and use the autopilot to bring the aircraft to a certain altitude, you can open the GPS and see the aircraft icon on the centre map. Just make sure you are following the pink line. If the aircraft is out of the pink line, you need to use the heading knob to follow the pink line. Just make sure the heading indicator is on when you activate the autopilot command.

Before take-off, you may want to adjust the altitude and the heading. After take-off, turn the autopilot on and heading indicator on and use the heading knob to turn the aircraft at certain degrees to follow the pink line. If you use the instrument flight rule (IFR), you will get instruction from the control tower on taking off, maintaining altitude, and following heading direction until you reach the destination. The flight planner will also appear on the aircraft navigation system.

Airspace:

When you open the GPS, you will notice there are circles. It is an airspace boundaries. It can have two or more circles depending on the airport. In the middle of the circle, you will see the airport. When you exit the boundaries, you will get a message from the air traffic control that the radio frequency is changed. The purpose of the airspace is to prevent aircraft from colliding with each other.

There are three classes: A, B, C, D, E, and G. A stand for Alpha, B for Bravo, C for Charlie, D for Delta, E for Echo, and G for Golf. There are also other types of airspace which is controlled and uncontrolled. If you miss the approach, it will be a good idea to go around the circle. When taking off within Class B or C, air traffic control will automatically handle the communication until you exit class B or C airspace. In some classes, you don’t have to communicate with anyone while flying.

While flying in real life, you need to communicate with the control tower to enter another airspace. The pilot must meet specific requirements to receive the certificate to fly within the airspace.

 

Selecting runway approach:

runway approach

First, before using GPS while flying, you need to open the air traffic window by pressing this “`” key found below the Esc key. Then tune to the air traffic control tower, and they will tell you to land on which runway.

Open the GPS display and click the proc button. Proc stands for a procedure where you can open the runway page and select the runway. Depending on the airport, some have one runway, two runways, or more. After choosing the runway number, you will need to activate the vector on approach.

A vector-on approach will help the aircraft land on the runway safely. Use the proc button to activate the vector on approach. The GPS displays a feather icon coloured green that will help aircraft approach the runway safely. However, you need to maintain a certain altitude before you approach the runway.

Flight Simulator 2020 GPS:

flight simulator 2020 gps

The GPS in Flight Simulator 2020 is more detailed as it has a more detailed map, waypoints, and more buttons.

The benefit of using GPS in aircraft:

The Global positioning system helps you find your way around. You can zoom in and out to see the airports near you. It is easy to use and accurate. While using the Flight Simulator X program, I use it to determine the location of the aircraft. It is more detailed than the aircraft navigation system.

In a Flight Simulator, you don’t have to know everything to use the GPS efficiently. If you know the basics, you can use it properly.

Conclusion:

If you are struggling with trying to get the hang of simulation games, don’t worry! There’s no single step-by-step method that applies to every user, and understanding game development can be tricky, to say the least. Even the most experienced users will make rookie mistakes. So it’s common to feel like you’re failing at it on the first few attempts. No matter what kind of game you’re creating. The best strategy to learn it is the one you are most interested in using: first, do the simplest thing you can do, then add to it. Keep at it until you have it down pat. Don’t expect to be an expert straight away. Take it one step at a time, and build upon the knowledge and experience gained.

10 thoughts on “Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS – Aircraft Navigation System

  1. Global Positioning Systems is one of the greatest ways to have our specific location where ever we re in the world. It is awesome to be able to just have a receiver and know our position without having to link to a base. I have also been reading about GNSS that is the combination of GPS (US), GLONASS (Rusia) and Galileo (Europe). China has also hopped in this bus with BeiDou.

    1. Thanks for the comment. Before GPS was invented only paper maps were used even in aircraft. The technology of GPS made it easier to find where you are and to plan routes.

  2. Hi Mohamed thank you for sharing this interesting article. I find it very well informed and well-described regarding what Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS offers. I’ve also read about other online simulators programs as GNSS which helps pilots in their flights. I believe this is quite something and every single plane should have. Overall I like the topic with such information for everyone to understand. Thank you.

    1. Thank you for your nice comment. The GPS that come with Flight Simulator program is more detail than the navigation map in aircraft because on the GPS screen you can see the earth while flying.

  3. Thanks for the GPS technology tutorial! Gone were the days when paper maps were used even for an aircraft that missed its route. With the new innovations that are now springing up by the day, the world would turn into a better place to live. The new aircraft technology you discussed will help the world in many ways. Thanks for educating us on Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS!

    1. You are welcome. GPS helps in navigation and even smart phones and iPad have google maps connected to a satellite. 

  4. The Microsoft Flight Simulator GPS is a great way to learn how to fly more accurately. Learning the basics of navigating with a plane can be difficult, but it’s not impossible. With some practice and guidance from this article, you will soon have an easier time flying your own aircraft confidently! What are some ways that you found helpful in learning about planes?

  5. I have been fascinated with flight simulators over the years because of getting that feeling of being in the cockpit and flying a jet this is just really amazing. This is a great way to test your flying skills in a safe way. I know of someone who has a flight simulator and used it a whole lot seems. He went to flight school however and is now a pilot and doing well for himself when it comes to flying planes. Thanks so much for sharing.

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