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Flightgear Practice Flights #2: San Francisco to Moffet International

Updated on May 27, 2011

For all you flight enthusiasts and flight simmers, just thought I'd share some practice flight plans that I created to practice flying on Flightgear with the Cessna 172.

These are of course, my inventions, and have nothing to do with the actual flights, neither would these probably be acceptable for a pilot. It just helps me tune my air navigation skills, and I hope it helps you too!

If you haven't tried Flightplan #1, you should try it now, since each flightplan builds on the knowledge gained in the previous Flightplan.

IFR, or Instrument Flight Rules) are basically governed by only one principle - every decision in your flight should be based on instruments, and not on what you see around you.(this is called VFR, or Visual Flight Rules). And, to be frank, you can forget about doing any long distance flights using VFR. You'd pause your flight a million times to check with the map and kill yourself trying to align with the runway! I did it for months before I thought that there has to be something better than this.

In this flightplan, we're going to be switching VORs mid-flight. And we're going to be relying on two friendly VORs showing us the way, and an NDB which will tell us when to swtich VOR frequencies. The VORs are the SAU(116.2) and SFO(115.8). The NDB is the BRIJJ NDB(379). As you probably know, you should download a copy of the flightplan image for your reference.

Once you're in the cockpit, set your radios as indicated in the flightplan for Section 1. Take-off from KSFO and head north(0). We won't use the SFO VOR at this point since we just need to be heading along north to intersect the SAU VOR at radial 12. Keep your eyes peeled on the VOR gauges, since the airway will literally "pass by" on your gauge(i.e. the needle will swing from right to left). At this point, make a standard turn and oversteer the plane by 30 degrees so that you can get back to the VOR. Once the needle starts getting to the centre, turn into the VOR heading of 12. Once you do this, its time to sit back relax and watch the ships go by.

Keep your eye on the ADF gauge which is showing the direction to the BRIJJ NDB. As the needle goes horizontal, bring up your radio settings and set the radios as per "Section 2" on the flightplan. BUT….keep your heading! The idea here is to find the intersection point between the SAU 12 and SFO 10 VORs. Keep going straight until your needle is in the dead center of the gauge, now turn your aircraft to the heading of 144 and voila, you're perfectly aligned with the Moffet International Runway! Choose your strip and land!

Make sure you follow the altitude markings all the way on the flightplan, otherwise, you might end up with a missed approach.

Thats it for now…hope you like the flightplan. If you do fly the plan,let me know your thoughts on the same. Mail me some screenshots too, and we can compare how badly we both fly :P. If you're a pilot, do let me know if what I"m doing is right….heh!


I have more flightplans up my sleeve, drop in a comment here or at the facebook page and I'll add them!


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