View Full Version : Autoland - again
03-11-2002, 04:10 PM
Just got the DF737 for FS2002. Trying out autolands I have come to the following conclusion. It doesn't.
I read all the postings on the forum about autolands, everyone is saying they're hard, it doesn't flare enough etc. Well the truth is...it's not autolanding at all. There is no autoland feature in FS2002, and whilst the EADI might annunciate 'FLARE' at the appropriate height, there is no flare effect at all.
How do I know? Easy. Put the throttle panel up and watch the trim wheels during the supposed flare. They should trim back quite significantly to raise the nose, but THEY DON'T!!! They just hunt back and forth in a vain attempt to track the glideslope. You can tell this is an FS2002 internal function because it does it as badly as with every other FS2002 aircraft! The result is an aircraft that flies into the ground in what is no more than a controlled crash.
Can DF please confirm this just to put the record straight?
03-11-2002, 04:40 PM
Seems to work fine for me. Possibly you are landing too fast and have to much fuel onboard?
Anyway, since you say it's an MS problem, and it happens with all different airplanes, what's the point of Dreamfleet saying yes or no to the existence of a problem. Possibly you should ask MS to verify a problem for you.
03-12-2002, 06:12 PM
I'd just like Dreamfleet to confirm that the autoland feature in the old version of 734 (for FS2000) used the FS autoland feature, and that there is now no autoland feature because FS2002 doesn't have one! Simple!
The updated manual doesn't mention it and I've seen Lou Betti quoted as saying "autolands are a hit and miss affair in 2002" - well they would be, since they're not in it!
Could Dreamfleet do an update which puts the autoland feature back in as a separate function, outside the FS2002 autopilot? It already does that for other pitch hold functions like VNAV, vertical speed hold and altitude hold. All that would be needed is a small pitch up to a predetermined attitude whilst it settled on the runway.
Of course it's more fun doing manual landings anyway, but I'd just like to know, you know?
03-12-2002, 07:22 PM
The problem of ILS Glideslope tracking was a known issue when the patch was being beta tested. MS in an effort to achieve more realism tweaked the code of Autopilot ILS tracking, and ended up achieving the opposite.
However, good Autoland Landings can be made using the DF 737.
Read this thread, it is highly informative of the procedures for setting up a successful Autoland.
DF 737 FS2002 Patch Beta Tester
03-12-2002, 07:54 PM
OK, for the record, ALL halfway decent flight models will land themselves.
We became complacent with 2k because it tended to fly aircraft like trains allowing the sim to make up for poor approaches with the wrong speed and config. 2k2 will land a plane providing you help out by getting the approach right....it just needs a bit of practice.
Why do real world pilots have to be told to carry out periodic autolands? Because they don't like doing them.
All the best,
03-13-2002, 07:40 AM
You didn't answer the question! (Sorry to be picky, but I'm both a pilot and a control systems engineer so I can't help it!!!)
Most airliners, when coming down the glideslope at the correct Vref, adopt a slightly nose up pitch attitude. Yes, if you continue to fly them at the ground at that attitude without flaring they will produce a survivable landing but one which will probably require the airframe to be inspected for damage afterwards. This is what is happening in DF734 with FS2002. But this is NOT autoland. Autoland is an active system which pitches the nose up to arrest the rate of descent to an acceptable value for touchdown. FS2000 had this. There, nuff said.
The only conclusion I can reach is that the built-in FS glideslope and localiser tracking (which itself is pretty poor at wind correction angles) should be ditched in future products and bespoke autopilot functions, including a proper autoland, programmed instead. (I once wrote a really crude adventure module for FS98 which did autolands quite well, so it can't be that hard!)
I must say, apart from this issue the 734 is absolutely brilliant and I'm really, really impressed with it. For now, may all my 737 landings be manual ones...!
03-13-2002, 01:39 PM
In an effort to be "realistic" it is important to note that REAL airline pilots autoland the 737 less than 1% of the time, and only then on specific runways that are rated for such (see post above). They cannot be performed on just any runway in real life.
In FS it would appear that many want to use autoland as a crutch, and this saddens me, as landing a plane manually is one of the most challenging parts of flying. It is also realistic.
As to us programming something that will make autolands fool proof, well, we'll see what we can come up with for the future, coupled with no doubt thousands hours of programming and testing.
03-13-2002, 04:56 PM
Not in the 727 we won't LOL!!
All the best,
03-13-2002, 05:30 PM
Yup! No autoland, no FMC, and no VNAV in the 727! ;-)
Looking forward to seeing you in NYC next month, Paul. :-)
03-14-2002, 07:30 AM
And I want the flight attendants to bring me tea rather than promise coffee that never arrives! :-wave
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