What are these planes doing

I wanted to include two jpegs here, but I can’t see how it’s done – “paste” was suggested, but doesn’t work – dragging a jpeg from my desktop, does not work, so…I will include link from flickr…

…and a second…

…pictures show unusual flight patterns – anyone able to determine what’s going on…?

First one looks like an synthetic ADS test, not a real aircraft. The second appears to be a fairly normal aerial survey pattern.

…ok…Thanks for reply and suggestions…“ADS” meaning…what…“Aerial Data Synthesis” or…? – …for what purpose?
“Survey pattern”? – it’s a rather huge area that plane was systematically over-flying in a north-south manner…why? (more or less centered over Fresno)
…anyone else have any ideas…?

ADS-B, the means by which we see most of the aircraft on this site.

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Very unlikely that someone testing airborne equipment will be using a bogus callsign and a bogus Mode-S code. I’ll stick with non-aircraft.

…ok – Thank you (“…post must be at least 20 characters…” – …now it is…)

Funny that FR24 website pics are posted here with the questions. That means:

  1. The FA website tracking interface is weaker in features that the FR24 (I personally believe that too).
  2. The forums here are more active than on FR24 (I agree to that too).
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…yes! – …I originally found out about FlightRadar24 from a poster here on FlightAware and found it to be so much more useful as a “planespotter” than FlightAware…however…they complement each other I have found – sometimes FR24 won’t show certain info, but FA will (and vice versa)…and both sites are inexact as far as times for arrival etc, goes…often by a lot…

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Curious to understand what you would want available as a feature that FR24 has. This is in no way an endorsement that these features would be added, but to say that their tracking feature set is better without providing insight into what you want does not allow us to get better.

From my understanding, they took away the ability to essentially track flights by tail for non paid users? That does not seem to be a good feature.


Thank you Dxista,

I am opening a ticket to have a pop up or some other form to hold flight information for a selected flight when clicked on from our live map. This may include photos, flight info, other pertinent flight information, etc. I think this is a great idea to have implemented.

For #1, this is an issue with Google and their new requirements with using their map API. We do provide different map layers for our premium account holders which you should be able to benefit from for being a feeder.

For #3, what are you referring to when you mention main page?

I appreciate the feedback, especially when we are very excited to have our feeders involved in what they would want to see and how they can use the site.


For be the biggest issue is that when I click on a plane in FA, it opens a different tab (screen), with just that plane. And then that plane stays in my history. I generally don’t like when websites open tabs in my browser, if I want more tabs, I use right-click.
That behavior is great when I try to follow a specific flight (like when me or my family are on board) but, if I am just curious about a plane, the approach from FR24 is better - it opens the sidebar with all the info, picture, and leaves the plane with it’s trace on the same screen with the other planes.
Maybe it could be a process that from where one can select the behavior?
Also, I find that the auto zoom of the planes is less disturbing.

As for the map used… I don’t really care if it is Google’s or Bing or Open.

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Happens here too!!

Interestingly, Planefinder shows it but Flightradar24 and Flightaware do not.

Each is different.

Nice little contract, been going since the 1st of April, various areas and at fairly low levels (3000’). Probably some sort of localized photo survey, maybe checking pool fences!

…wow! – …amazing…so anyway, we’re not finding any solid explanations for these occurrences…nobody actually knows(?)
I posted the original screenshots after having first uploaded them to flickr (which I learned from way back was required, that is, pictures could not be inserted directly) – anyway, I do not want to keep them included in my flickr feed, so intent was to keep them there temporarily, until some explanation might have been found. – I’ll let them stay for a while, but when I do delete from flickr, I suppose they’ll disappear here as well…I’ll forewarn before deleting (from flickr)

I guess its possible to phone the aircraft operator and ask them, but I’m not that curious.

Hi dear all,
I have one big question

How callsign RYR90GF is converted to flight number FR1905 ?


There is not really a conversion. FR is the two letter IATA code which you will find on your ticket and the time tables at the airport and so on. RYR is the ICAO code, which is used within the filed flight plan for ATC. For some flights the number is the same (like FR123 and RYR123). For others it is different, like in your example. To my knowledge, the main reason is to avoid similar callsigns at the same time on the same frequency. Here in Frankfurt we had times where similar sounding callsigns were on the same frequency like DLH141, DLH441, DLH1141 - you get the idea. This can become dangerous…

Thanks Deudi,
If not conversion how air traffic tower recognizes which Callsign for which airplane it is.
Where the plane arrives and departures … ?

Can there be any internal communication between the flight towers ?


ATC allocate Squawk codes to aircraft. Each location hands them out. Sometimes from a pool, sometimes from regional or national allocations.

Later Mode-S and ADS-B aircraft also have unique codes assigned to their transponders.
In the US only, there is a mathematical relationship between the transponder code and aircraft registration or call sign.

Yes, i read that in ADS-B has Icao and Callsign.
Callsign is may be code for conversed to Flight Number, but how it is happen if not relationship between Callsign and Flight Number.

May be internal communication between the flight towers ?
I want to see the planes flying over my house :slight_smile: