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FlightGear Newsletter June 2014

3,804 bytes added, 12:25, 9 June 2014
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== FlightGear addons and mods ==
=== Damage and disintegration ===
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{{#ev:youtube|OpwNaoO3xMQ|240|right|Tomaskom's V-1 used in anger over London}}
{{#ev:youtube|H4XDuLo35ks|240|right|Victor V2.0 damage script causing a catastrophic failure and fire}}
{{#ev:youtube|uLojBI7ezdM|240|right|L-159 disintegration}}
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The development team at FGUK have been experimenting with modelling aircraft damage in a number of different ways. First of all, Tomaskom has used the particle system carefully to produce visually impressive fireballs and smoke columns with very little FPS impact. First seen in his V-1, we hope to adapt this to simulate realistic fireballs for ground impacts (where appropriate). For the moment, it explodes with the full force of a V-1's explosive payload. On the right is a video excerpt from the #FlightNight which Tom organised to debut the V-1, where we all had '''way''' too much fun bombing London. As you can see, the smoke is visible from quite a long way away from the impact, and despite two fires burning with huge smoke columns, and over ten multiplayer aircraft within model range, the frame rates are still more than acceptable. StuartC has already integrated the explosion and fireball into several development aircraft, and we expect eventually to combine it with the disintegration code and make the size of the explosion dependent on fuel load etc.
 
In a separate development, Algernon's work on the Victor V2.0(YASim) now includes modelled damage, a collection of Nasal scripts, some modified from existing FlightGear staples, which detects irregularities such as component failures, birdstrikes and combat weapon damage and adversely affects system performance and reliability accordingly. Unserviceability often follows, using the existing FlightGear failures system, and compatibility will be maintained as the failures system is improved. The damage script also calculates probabilites for chain reaction damage - for instance, an explosion or serious fire in one Victor engine will usually have an effect on the other. In extreme circumstances, an explosion will trigger further explosions and destroy the aircraft. The second video on the right shows a serious induced explosion on the Victor's number one engine at night. Some fine-tuning of the Rembrandt light has been carried out since this video was shot, so apologies for the visible cut-off.
 
Finally, and most spectacularly, FGUK aerodynamicist Tomaskom has demonstrated the disintegration capabilities of his L-159, which is under development. I can say little more than the third video on the right demonstrates, except that it's still a work in progress and a proof of concept, and we expect numerous different structural failures will be able to be modelled, hopefully in partnership with the damage script described above. We're pretty excited about this one!
 
PLEASE NOTE: I have been unable to post the videos at this moment. Hopefully this will be sorted out soon.
 
=== Scenesetter ===
Scenesetter is a piece of code by Algernon, very early in development but already quite effective, which can effect changes to the time and weather from an AI scenario synchronously with other MP players. A crude proof of concept was used in the recent FGUK #FlightNight "British Weather", where pilots visited different airfields with various unpleasant flying conditions. Scenesetter pushes METAR strings to the FlightGear weather system based on the location of an associated Navaid, establishing a circular zone of a specified radius around it in which METAR will be changed. Start time can be specified too, either by providing a local start time or a local time offset (useful for Multiplayer use where players will not all start the AI scenario at precisely the same time).
== In the hangar ==
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