for DBaker and staff


#1

East Cooper Airport (8S5) changed its identifier last November to KLRO (and its name to Mt. Pleasant Regional.) Is there a way to change that in your database? The site will find 8S5 but since that identifier no longer exists, you can’t track flights by that airport because everyone files to LRO, which doesn’t exist in Flightaware.

Did I make that more confusing than it is? It’s a gift.


#2

Moderators: Is it possible to set up a new category for missing/changed airports?


#3

Why create a new category and manually keep the database up to date? The FAA publishes its NAS database every 56 days. I’m guessing FA is using this database, but filtering out some of the airports?

Here is a link to a free download for the entire NAS database of Airports (APT.TXT), Navaids (NAV.TXT), Fixes (FIX.TXT), etc. I know some of you will find it of interest.

NAS Data

KLRO is in there along with an airport I frequent 7W4 that is not in FA.


#4

pmannino, I’m not sure you understood my question, which is my fault.

I think the suggestion was to create a new category that FA could monitor for complaints about identifier changes. Very obviously, FA does not automatically pull from a FAA database every 56 days or we wouldn’t be having this discussion. There seems to be a manual component somewhere in their system or this identifier change (8S5 to LRO) would have been done last November.

I like the idea of a special category for identifier changes as long as it is monitored by FA. This is the 4th time I’ve mentioned this particular airport (and this airport, as well as others, has been mentioned several times by others) and there has yet to be any acknowledgement, so I’m assuming this hasn’t been noticed yet by the powers-that-be.


#5

My response was directed more to the FA staff. I worked on the NAS database in the late 90’s. It’s the authoritative source for airport data. Maybe there’s a possibility FA overlooked this source or decided against using it?

If they used this source or any automated method they wouldn’t have to field complaints. It would lessen the workload for them and we could find other things to complain about instead :smiley:.

The NAS system is designed so that changes in identifiers are automatically tracked. Entering 8S5 or LRO into their system would always return the correct airport. The public database doesn’t have that historical information, but it’s easy to capture and save the changes from release to release.

Someone mentioned the FAA Location Identifier Handbook (FAAO 7350.7) in another post. The handbook is published every 122 days and pulls most of its data from the NAS database. By the time it’s published, it’s obsolete. There’s a LID.txt file (LID=Location IDentifier) distributed with the NAS database as well, but it doesn’t have everything in it that the printed handbook has.


#6

According to section 1-1-4a of 7350.7 (there’s no FAAO shown in the title), it is published every 112 days (not 122 days), which happens to be on alternate aeronautical chart dates.

The National Flight Data Digest is used to update it with “important interim United States dentifier assignments, corrections, or deletions…”

Does anyone know if the National Flight Data Digest is available online? I have only been able to find references to it and not the actual document. I’ve used Google and have also searched the FAA site to try to locate it.


#7

Here you go Dave, but it requires a subscription and/or registered access.


#8

Thanks.
Couldn’t find any cost associated with it but then, as is typical of many (not all) government sites, it was somewhat poorly designed.


#9

Oops. I knew it was 112 days. It’s twice the normal 56-day cycle. Trivia question: Why 56 days? Answer: That’s the lead time they need for the printing plant to do their stuff.

The link I provided earlier is a free download for the National Flight Data Digest. I’m still using the old name “NAS Database.” It’s published by FAA ATA-100. The owner of the website has a subscription and keeps it up-to-date. Here’s the link again: National Flight Data Digest (Formerly: NAS Database)

The website also has all the current Sectional Charts and all the NOS Approach Plates in digitized form.


#10

Whoa! Thanks… great resource.


#11

[quote=“JHEM”]

I don’t think that site has been updated in years. FlightAware offers current digital (PDF and PNG) downloads of NOS approach plates, of course.


#12

Thanks to everyone for their feedback. It probably isn’t a surprise that the issue is much more complex than it seems. We do have direct access to the FAA ATA100 data as well as the digital terminal procedure publications, which is what feeds the FlightAware Resources section.

FlightAware.com doesn’t simply lack the ability to turn an airport code into a name, it has to have the ability to recognize various forms of the code and standardize it for consistency as well as associate other variables with it. Sparing everyone the details of complexity, the main reason why FlightAware doesn’t pull the regularly updated FAA data as the primary source of airport codes is because FlightAware uses ICAO airport codes, not FAA or IATA codes.

For example, the ATA100 data calls Los Angeles LAX rather than KLAX, Anchorage ANC not PANC and Kahului OGG not PHOG. I can go on and on – but you can see how things start to get tricky.

We have a proposed solution internally to actively and regularly join multiple database to form one airport database that we will use and have automatically and regularly updated. However, it’s one of many priorities going on at FA right now. Rest assured that we recognize the importance of getting all the airport right and we intend to take it on soon – and if it was as simple as finding a list of airports from a web site, we definitely would have handled it by now. :wink:

Have a good weekend.


#13

Up-to-date sectionals are available online at skyvector.com/


#14

Unfortunately, Skyvector doesn’t offer downloadable sectionals, which is what I needed for my application.

I put together a “poor mans” moving map display for my Cessna. It has a Garmin GPS 300XL with a data port output (RS232) that spits out GPS information. (It’s a “poor man’s” GPS as well, but it is IFR certified.)

I connect a laptop to the data port which provides a continuous feed to OziExplorer ($85USD) moving map software. I’ve loaded all Sectional charts which are in GeoTiff format. (They have Lat/Lon cordinates embedded in them that OziExplorer understands.) I also load OziExplorer with Airport, Navaid, and Fix data extracted from the National Flight Data Digest. The end result is very functional moving map display that is far cheaper than other alternatives.

When I drive around town or head out on the boat, I can connect the same laptop to my Garmin GPSMAP 76CSx. The sectional charts are less interesting in this mode, but the aviation data is still of interest. The GPS offers turn-by-turn directions that can guide me to distant airports of interest.


#15

Now you just need a wireless/cellular data card so you can pull down (er, I guess that would be up) the NEXRAD geotiff weather images.


#16

Anyone know of a similar site for low or hi-alt enroute charts?


#17

Googled “free IFR enroute charts”

http://maps.myairplane.com
Sectionals, TAC charts, IFR Low and High Enroute charts.
Requires Internet Explorer 6. Zoom and Pan functions are somewhat difficult to use.


#18

I supposed I could’ve done that… But thanks. You’re definitely right about it being difficult though. I can’t find anything better…

Edited to add: I found this fltplan.com/LogOnToCharts.htm but ‘better’ might not describe it. It’s different, faster, and works in more browsers, but still not an enroute chart.


#19

Doesn’t zoom in Firefox. I tried Opera 9 - doesn’t work there either.

It is very slow to do the zoom in IE6 and never did get it to pan.


#20

For some reason it seems to be working much faster now (at least for me). The zoom works fine (just click once, don’t drag a box) but the pan is somewhat counterintuitive. It should be titled “recenter on” and not “pan” (once again, just click once.