More about the wonders of the Navigraph suite of tools

3 months 1 week ago #17553 by Westcoast
Several of us have posted about the Navigraph on-line flight planning tool, "Simbrief".  By simply entering your origin, destination and aircraft model, (as well as passenger and cargo load) Simbrief will provide you with suggested flight plans (several) in your preferred format or downloaded directly to your aircraft FMS, suggest a cruising altitude and alternate, compute the fuel required by your particular aircraft and provide an elaborately detailed briefing in the format of your favorite commercial airline.  These are services which would be provided to pilots in the dispatch paperwork (software) if you were flying for a commercial airline.  Not only that, but it will provide you with the current real world weather (METAR and TAF) for your origin, destination and alternate.  But even this understates what is included.  The proposed flight plan will tell you what runways will likely be used for both departure and arrival, and it will (optionally) include both SIDs and STARs in your flight plan and the selected STAR will be the correct transition and final branch of that STAR appropriate for your arrival runway.  If you do your flights in current (now) real world weather, the METARs and TAFs provided will be the same as would be provided by your weather program (e.g., Active Sky Next)..  During the last few weeks I have been flying flights for my little ECON feeder airline operating out of KMSP.  So, since I usually fly in the late afternoon, I have been departing and arriving in either rain or snow under a low ceiling and in the dark.almost every day.  The hardest part is taxing in the dark; those runway marking are hard to see at night in the rain.

Now you can couple Simbrief with the updated Navigraph Charts program, download your simbrief flight plan to Chart and have both a detailed chart of your flight plan and, by coupling to your current flight, a moving map of you flight in progress and you can do this on any platform with an internet connection and need not use your flight sim computer for these services.  Additionally, Chart will imbed all of the relevant charts (SIDs, STARs, Taxi Diagrams, Approach Plates) in your moving map and allow you to see these on the map, or print them out for you use.  And in the side bar accompanying your moving map, you will see the computed in-track and crosswind components for you takeoff and landing runways.

Of course, all of this requires that you have a Navigraph subscription and those can be a bit pricey, but I couldn't sim without it.

Mike (SPA Training Manager)

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3 months 1 week ago #17555 by jer029
Hey Mike,

Yes - love the charts, especially with integrated flight-pads some planes like my BAE-146 has.  After receiving my taxi instructions from ATC, I bring up the airport chart and the moving-map function.  This displays my aircraft's location at the airport gate along with the taxiways.  I can then match this to the instructions and know exactly the path that I was assigned to get to the hold-short line.  With the integrated flight-pad, I can see it as I taxi without moving my screen (with my multi-monitor setup), and I taxi smoothly to the hold-short line.  This is much preferable to the ridiculously large arrows that MSFS2020 uses to assist you to and from your gate.

During flight I tend not to use the moving maps because I prefer using the more realistic navigational equipment provided with the aircraft.  The BAE-146 does not use GPS, but I do use the optional MCDU to program my route.  Then I rely on the waypoints and distances to get me to my destination.  It makes it a bit more fun than watching your plane crawl across the colorful GPS map to your destination on the GPS-equipped planes.

I might note that the BAE-146 comes with an excellent checklist from the MSFS-menu and I use this to fly all phases of the flight.  This is the BAE-146 Professional that is also available in other sims besides MSFS2020.


John Rogers

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