Changelog 2018.3

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Available in: English, Chinese.

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The FlightGear development team is delighted to announce the v2018.3 release of FlightGear, the free, open-source flight simulator. This new version contains many exciting new features, enhancements and bugfixes including usability improvements to the launcher, improved scenery for Hawaii and the Arctic island of Jan Mayan, Italian, Chinese and Russian translations, better visuals for AI and MP aircraft.

Founded in 1997, FlightGear is developed by a worldwide group of volunteers, brought together by a shared ambition to create the most realistic flight simulator possible that is free to use, modify and distribute. FlightGear is used all over the world by desktop flight simulator enthusiasts, for research in universities and for interactive exhibits in museums.

FlightGear features more than 400 aircraft, a worldwide scenery database, a multiplayer environment, detailed sky modeling, a flexible and open aircraft modeling system, varied networking options, multiple display support, a powerful scripting language, and an open architecture. Best of all, being open-source, the simulator is owned by the community and everyone is encouraged to contribute.

Download FlightGear v2018.3 for free from

FlightGear - Fly Free!


  • Flightplan loading within the launcher.
  • Chinese, Russian and Italian translations for the launcher and UI
  • Improved support for the state of the aircraft depending on starting location - cold and dark on the ramp, engine running ready for take-off on the runway, or in cruise flight.


  • Improved joystick configuration and binding options.

AI / Multiplayer

  • Multiple Levels of Detail (LoD) for MP and AI aircraft. To improve performance, low-detail models are used when the viewer is far from the MP aircraft.
  • Fallback models to display in the case where a viewer does not have the MP aircraft installed.
  • Many improvements to AI models including new liveries, timetabled movements


  • Support for retrieving Canvas images over HTTP. This is a useful feature for displaying instruments like a PFD, ND, EICAS or any MFD externally from the FlightGear 3D main window in a separate window or on a separate monitor, computer or a mobile device. See Read_canvas_image_by_HTTP for more information.
  • Improved cloud rendering with stronger Mie scattering on cloud fringes, improved scattering on cirrus clouds
  • Reset: wipe the Effect UniformCache


  • Improved scenery for Hawaii, the default location for this release.
  • New scenery for Jan Mayen, situated northeast of Iceland. Including the active volcano of Beerenberg (2277m).


  • The feature fail_hardover of the <actuator> component was not giving the correct output in some occurences when clipmax was smaller in absolute value than clipmin.
  • Tables CORNERING_COEFF could not be used for BOGEY contact points.
  • Bug fixes for JSBSim atmosphere model at very high altitudes
  • Fixed PID integration with the 3rd order Adams-Bashforth was inccorect.
  • The fail_stuck property of sensors (accelerometers, magnetometers, gyro, etc.) without a <lag> element was setting the output to zero instead of sticking to the last output value.
  • When a sensor was stuck, the drift, gain, bias and quantization of the last output before being stuck were ignored.
  • Fixed the Calibrated Air Speed (CAS) computations for supersonic velocities
  • Fixed the Nlf (Normal load factor) sign
  • Nlf can now be specified as an initial condition via the property ic/targetNlf
  • Added blocking sockets to the input features
  • Added a property to piston engines to get the AFR (Air to Fuel Ratio)
  • Added conversion from m/s to ft/s
  • Restored the initial conditions for engines running (-1 means all engines)

Significant Aircraft Updates

  • "Metadata" has been added to many aircraft, making it easier to find new exciting aircraft to fly using the launcher, whether you are interested in aircraft from the 1920s or twin engined business jets.
  • B-25 : Various bug fixes and minor improvements
  • Cessna 172 : Improved cockpit, interior lighting.
  • Citation II : New panels, radio instruments. Complete remodeling of the electric system, with accurate bus voltage, circuit breakers. System test knob implemented.
  • F4U : new FDM
  • F-14 : V1.8. Improved flight model, particularly in a low-speed regime. Improved cockpit.
  • F-15 : V1.8. Updated flight model, particularly armament mass location. Performance optimizations. Autopilot improvements.
  • F-16 : v3.0. Store options. New liveries. Radar performance optimizations. Autopilot and system improvements. FDM fixes.
  • Saab 37 Viggen : Version 4.313. Various updates, particularly to radar and armament models.
  • Seneca II: Long range tanks, interior lighting,
  • SpaceShuttle : Milestone-10. Improved interior (including furry velcro), launch guidance and orbital plane targeting, more realistic OMS burn procedures, expanded systems including circuit breaker simulation and failure modeling.
  • 777: Our flagship airliner now fully supports checklists, allowing you to learn everything about the aircraft from within the simulator. Full support to auto-push was also implemented. Bug fixes and minor improvements.


  • FG1000 glass panel display, inspired by moving map devices like the the Garmin G1000
  • Improved Replay handling of AI aircraft and carriers - judge your own carrier landings.
  • KC-130 tanker aircraft for air-to-air refueling
  • Flightplan GPX import now supports elevation values.
  • TACAN: Add support for setting TACAN by frequency

2018.3.2 point release

  • Chinese font support for the splash screen / tips, and some updated Chinese translations
  • C172P bug fixes
  • fixed crash on certain AMD 64-bit systems relating to SSE intrinsics and memory alignment
  • fixed crash loading flightplans saved from LittleNavMap with non-sequential waypoint indices
  • tolerate missing runways parsing Navigraph procedures, so current cycle can be used at more airports
  • use Ref versions of osgDB methods to avoid crashes, especially after long flights
  • fix a NaN in the sky rendering code at extreme orbital altitudes
  • set default values of some position properties for consistency with the rest (affected C172 tie-down mode)
  • fix JSBSim wheel-spin down regression

2018.3.3 point release

  • Avoid crash on Cmd-Q exit of the app on macOS
  • JSBSim bug fixes
  • Fix for route-path when leg 0 is not a runway
  • Improve parsing of apt.dat header
  • Prevent a segfault when parsing malformed nav.dat files
  • Fix crash loading a flight-plan
  • Tolerate missing runways parsing procedures
  • Change screenshot filename to have date time
  • Split up SIMD support in ENABLE_SIMD which enables sse2 support for the compiler and ENABLE_SIMD_CODE which enables the hand crafted SIMD math functions which defaults to OFF now since compilers have catched up on generating optimized vectorized SIMD code.
  • Add some /sim/presets properties to setDefaults
  • LOD: Multiplayer fix
  • PID integration with the 3rd order Adams-Bashforth was inccorect.
  • The fail_stuck property of sensors (accelerometers, magnetometers, gyro, etc.) without a <lag> element was setting the output to zero instead of sticking to the last output value. Thanks to legoboyvdlp for the bug report.
  • When a sensor was stuck, the drift, gain, bias and quantization of the last output before being stuck were ignored. Thanks to Dennis J. Linse for the bug report.
  • Bug fixes for JSBSim atmosphere model at very high altitudes
  • Fix an inverted flag in Radar calculation
  • Fix crash on Ctrl-V in PUI
  • Fix for jumping view when right-dragging
  • Bug fix for JSBSim.
  • Switch to new stable-2018 catalog for the release
  • Flight-plan: improve GPX loading
  • Change CAVOK visibility to 9999.0 metres

2018.3.4 point release

  • Launcher: fix aircraft switching on update
  • METAR fix
  • All start from parking position with no ground net
  • [security] Prevent buffer overrun.
  • Arrival procedure routing fixes
  • Avoid a warning when inserting nil into a FP

2018.3.5 point release

  • Joystick initialization fixes
  • Fixes for JSB trimming
  • [JSBSim] The sign of the XZ inertia has been fixed in the property inertia/ixz-slug_ft2 (was just an output error, the correct XZ inertia was used internally).
  • Tweaking macOS HID code to avoid a Catalina crash

2018.3.6 point release

  • Fix crash on first run on macOS due to Gatekeeper
  • Fix missing file menu on macOS when using Dutch localization
  • Add Ctrl-F shortcut to launcher to Fly!
  • Improve launcher aircraft searching