Adding layers to local skyaware with open layers

Hey guys, hoping to get a little knowledge on the coding side of the system. A little background, I’m an ATC Tower, and we currently use the skyaware view as our ground monitor, kind of like ASDE. I’m not a programmer whatsoever and I’ve seen other discussions about openlayers, but since I have no understanding of almost all of it, I just wanted to post up a question to see the possibility before searching out someone who knows JS.

Is it possible to create layers to stack, kind of like the US ARTCC and NEXRAD layers, but to draw rectangles pertaining to ILS critical areas, runway safety areas, and adding in markers for navaids on the field, and using a different layer button for each?
We’re looking to just modify the code locally through an override in the page source, since we’re on a flightfeeder and not our own piaware build.

Hope that makes sense and doesn’t sound stupid.

Sure. If you can get the polygons you want to draw in geojson format, you can just copy what’s done for the existing geojson layers here:

The parameters to createGeoJsonLayer are:

  • the displayed name
  • a unique identifier that’s used to store whether the layer is enabled/disabled
  • the URL of the geojson file
  • fill color and line color for the polygons
  • true/false flag controlling whether to show labels from the geojson on the layer or not

If you do have a separate machine available (Pi, or whatever), you could set up skyaware (or tar1090, or whatever your viewer of choice is) with your modifications on there and have it take a datafeed from the FlightFeeder, rather than having to mess around in the browser.

(also: please please please don’t use the FlightFeeder data for anything safety critical!)


A dedicated Pi, with tar1090 installed, can have stuff like that programmed.
wiedehopf/tar1090: Provides an improved webinterface for use with ADS-B decoders readsb / dump1090-fa (
However, like Obj pointed out, those are not FAA approved to be used for safety/critical missions.
Example of tar1090 layers:

No it won’t.

You can get the some charts, but stuff like an ILS critical area isn’t on any of the charts.


OK, I said “will have stuff like that”. Maybe should have said “can have”. My bad.
And I pointed out the FAA safety. They might be a small airfield and just want to monitor that.
I am imagining something like this:
Services | Williamsburg Jamestown Airport

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As already stated that’s not a certified safety system.

To just state some reasons off the top of my head:

  • If you lose reception for whatever reason, the marker will not be updated giving an old location for up to 60 seconds.
  • The icon will have typically have its center where the cockpit of the aircraft is. For the things you mentioned this can make enough difference to be relevant (cockpit off the runway, tail still on the runway)

Anyhow that’s more practical considerations, more of an issue of legality.

Look at the user name?


Small, but not that small as I was expecting.
Air Traffic Control Tower | Dupage Airport

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Awesome. Unfortunately for the time being, we’re running only a single system until we can get a fully working test platform up, so we’re tied to just modifying the code as an override. We’re also stuck with just coordinates, but I didn’t know that we could create a GeoJSON for multiple fields and then make it a single layer for a group of airports.

Thanks for the info!

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We’re still one of the 3 red headed step children to O’Hare :joy::joy:

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