I’m new to FlightXML and thrilled by its exciting features. The current project I’m working on needs the flight plan data for Atlantic, Pacific, and Alaska. Is it in general a good idea to query FlightAware for one day worth of oceanic traffic?
Oceanic position reports are not transmitted as frequently as ground radar stations, so position estimation is relied upon more heavily. The FlightXML methods GetHistoricalTrack and GetLastTrack intentionally include only true positions (no estimated positions), so the number of positions returned over the ocean will be very minimal. SearchBirdseyePositions may allow you to retrieve projected positions, or even retrieve just specifically oceanic positions, if that’s all you want.
The “route” and “waypoints” members are present when we receive that information from a data provider that has it available. Generally, all IFR flights involving the US, Canada, Australia airspace will have those members available. VFR flight-following flights, or flights outside of those areas will generally have them blank. “route” is a space separated list of navaid names (available through FlightInfoEx). “waypoints” is a list of latlon pairs that have already been decoded for you (available through InFlightInfo, Search, SearchBirdseyeInFlight).
When the “route” member is available and the flight is entirely within the continental US, then the “DecodeRoute” and “DecodeFlightRoute” methods in FlightXML will generally be able to parse the route and return the latitude/longitude list for the path.