• How To...Fly The Concorde

    How To Fly The Concorde

    By Trevor Cook

    How To Fly The Concorde

    After many frustrating hours, and with help from the FS2000 Forum with some figuring out by myself and with the assistance of the 5 hour Concorde video by I T V V I think I have got the hang of flying the Concorde.

    First of all I would like to point out to those of you who are trying to fly the "Concorde Adventure flight Heathrow to JFK" in FS2000 don't, as a great deal of it is wrong. The part that is wrong with this adventure is when you have to descend to FL350 50 nm out from Gander and fly the last 1300 nm at subsonic speed 350 kts IAS. The Concorde is not very fuel efficient at this altitude and speed and that is why you run out of fuel about 500 nm out from JFK. That is right, the Concorde uses less fuel flying at Mach 2 and at FL500 than at a lower altitude and speed.

    Just another thing worth mentioning here is that when the Concorde is flying at Mach 2 it puts out a sonic boom foot print of about 100 nm either side of it and about 20 nm behind it and this is why it never flies over land at supersonic speeds.

    For this flight we are going to fly from London Heathrow taking off from runway 27R flying to JFK and doing an ILS landing on runway 31L. This flight will be done using the GPS with waypoints. As most of you will know how to use the flight planner I will not show how to plot your course. Just remember to keep your course on the leg of the flight down the US coastline about 100 nm out. Now to the flight. I have found that the two most important things in flying the Concorde are managing your fuel to keep the C of G right and to keep your flying speed up. Here we are sitting on the end of runway 27R at Heathrow about 1 minute to takeoff and we are just setting up the auto pilot.

    • Auto Throttle On
    • Speed Hold Set To 250 kts
    • Flight Director On
    • Auto Pilot Off
    • Vertical Speed Set To 2000 fpm
    • Alt Set To 28000 ft Until Clear Of Coast
    • Visor Down And Set
    • GPS NAV Selector To GPS
    • Select Fuel Pump To Auto As I Find This Works The Best

    Cleared for take off - 5 4 3 2 1 - go full power with afterburners, hold course straight down the runway until you hit 210 kts, pull back gently on stick to rotate, select gear up and switch on the auto pilot. Once established in the climb and doing 250 kts and with the after burners off you can increase your rate of climb to about 4000 fpm but keep an eye on your airspeed and if it starts to drop off decrease it. Your visor should be half raised by this time and also monitor your C of G. Once you have passed 10000 ft increase speed to 400 kts on the dial on the auto pilot and if it doesn't increase lower your climb rate.

    By this time your visor should be fully raised. When you reach the coast select your altitude to 50000 ft, switch afterburners on and slowly accelerate to Mach 2; this will take some time. On the ASI you will notice the maximum speed indicator and as you gain altitude you will notice it will increase with altitude and as it does so increase your airspeed on the airspeed dial on the AP to match. Again if your AS decreases, decrease your rate of climb. By the time you get to 50000 ft you will be down to 500 fpm. Leave your AP on the IAS hold mode until the Mach indicator reaches 2.00 then change over to the Mach hold mode. When you reach Mach 1.7, which will be about 45000 ft, switch off afterburners and to maintain speed your climb should be down to 500 fpm. Upon reaching 50000 ft and Mach 2 you can sit back and relax and enjoy the ride. You can also speed the sim up by selecting 4X speed which is the max. you can do with autopilot.

    Approach

    At approximately 250 nm out from JFK switch sim speed back to normal and you can slow down to 350 kts. To do this select IAS hold dial to 350 kts and the Concorde will slow down. When you have reached 350 kts start the descent down to about 2000 ft which you should reach about 30 nm out from JFK. During your descent you should set the radio to the ILS frequency for runway 31L and also the heading (111.35 MHz & 314 degrees.) You can also turn off the GPS and manually steer the plane to line up with the runway by using the heading dials on the AP. Make sure you have the heading button turned on. Keep an eye on the HSI and when you see the ILS lock on switch the autopilot heading mode off and switch onto the approach mode. Your speed should be back to about 250 kts below 10000 ft. When you are about 20 nm out you should be back to 190 kts and back to 155-160 kts on final approach.

    During the descent you can come down as steep as 5000 fpm if you feel you are going to be to high. Keep an eye on your AS and lower the visor. To slow down, the real Concorde puts the inboard engines into some sort of reverse thrust mode but I have not tried this on the sim yet.

    Happy Landings

    If you think I have left anything out or you think something is wrong or you have further questions let me know and I will try to answer them.

    Trevor Cook
    trevw@actrix.co.nz

    Projet Mach 2 Concorde for FS2002/FS2004.