FlightGear Newsletter January 2019

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We would like to emphasize that the monthly newsletter can not live without the contributions of FlightGear users and developers. Everyone with a wiki account (free to register) is welcome to contribute to the newsletter. If you know about any FlightGear related news or projects such as for example updated scenery or aircraft, please do feel invited to add such news to the newsletter.

Development news

FlightGear 2018.3.2

2018.3.2 has been released on January 30, 2019 (as "Bugfix release"). James wrote a changelog:

  • 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

You can download FlightGear 2018.3.2 at sourceforge.net.

FlightGear goes into space

Visit ISS

Thorsten wrote to the devel mailing list:

Cquote1.png I'm happy to announce the fact that despite the restriction that we can only run one FDM, it is now possible to use the Shuttle to fly to ISS from launch to docking [1]. This has been one major missing ingredient in the simulation so far. (we've only provided a mockup of ISS being initialized right ahead of the spacecraft for docking practice).

The viable solution is to let the orbiting object move on an analytical orbit corrected for the leading J3 gravity effects, compute a rendezvous solution to that and switch to an explicit simulation of full orbital dynamics only when the space station is close. This works with an accuracy of < few hundred meters and < 2-3 m/s, which is to say within numbers that can be corrected in the final approach phase with relative ease.

So for everyone who's been asking the question when we can finally do a full rendezvous - the answer is: Now.

[1] Of course you have to know how to solve a rendezvous problem - which involved computing suitable planar and phasing launch windows, phasing orbits, nulling relative inclination in J3 gravity, operating the Lambert solver in the Shuttle avionics and some knowledge about proximity ops...
— Thorsten Renk (2019-01-18). Visit ISS.
Shuttle approaching ISS 
Space Shuttle docked to ISS 

He posted some impressive screenshots of the approach as well. You may need to download the development version to use all these fancy new features before it gets copied into FGAddon.

New software tools and projects


FGExtend has been updated. The Mumble radio management software FGExtend is in the first post here: FGExtend FlightGear Forum

In the hangar

The original PC-12 by helijah, now available with glass cockpit

New aircraft

Pilatus PC-12 NG

iamzac equipped the Pilatus PC-12 with glass cockpit elements. He wrote

Cquote1.png The target was Pilatus PC-12 NG with the glass cockpit using what I found similar enough and I managed to make it work good enough.

Explore it at the forums

J3 Cub and PA-18

Piper J3cub

Check out the recent retrofit of the FG1000 to the Piper J3 Cub and the PA-18. User wlbragg pushed more updates like a shadow cube, 3D artwork, GUI-edits, rain on windshield and started a fuel system.

Available in the development repository and in FGAddon trunk.

Updated aircraft

Updated FGAddon Aircraft:

  • Updates to the fictional Bluebird aircraft by sandreas41
  • Fix for 777 Startup tutorial
  • ASG29: improvements to Cockpit, model and winch operations.
  • Harrier-GR3: auto-hover, contributed by cgdae.
  • 737-300: Miscelaneous fixes to the 3D model


it0uchpods added new failures and LSAS Pitch Attitude Protections, DUAL/SINGLE LAND, CLAMP, GO AROUND AFDS OVRD , gear/flap over speed automatic flap limit, Autopilot disengage warning (push ATS DISC button on throttles second time) to the PFD of IDG-MD-11X.


The IDG-A32X got an overhauled autopilot disconnect warning as well as new dome and panel floods. There have been multiple bugfixes to the flybywire and flight control systems. 2018.3.1 will become the MINIMUM required FG version for any IDG Aircraft VERY soon.


This month the AI Team provided updates for Norwegian airlines, ELAL Israel, Swiss Air, Helvetic and AirBaltic. New traffic timetables have been written for Volotea and Edelweiss Air , AirCorsica, Binter Cabo Verde, Binter Canarias and CanaryFly. The need more contributors to make AI liveries here; your help is always welcome.

The AI team makes FlightGear more realistic, colorful and lively every month. You can support the important development of Interactive Traffic and contribute at the FlightGear AI forums.

Scenery corner

Scenery Models

Scenery model additions in January include detailed complex models of KMKE Milwaukee WI Airport (B. Arthur), EDFP Ober-Mörlen (T. Polzer) and LFML Marseille airport (J Chatre), and various new objects like buildings for the city of Marseille (F. Carreel).

Community news

FlightGear on SourceForge

Flightgear is nominated for "SourceForge Project of the month" February 2019. Voting is over, so keep your eyes open and visit the Sourceforge Blog for updates.

FlightGear on YouTube

FlightGear on Facebook

Since early December 2010, FlightGear has an official Facebook page. If you have a Facebook account please feel free to join the page.

FlightGear on Google+

Since November 2011 there is a FlightGear page on Google+. If you haven't done so already, please add us to your circle and stay up to date on the latest FlightGear news, cool screenshots and release info.

FlightGear on Instagram

In January 2018 the @flightgear_sim Instagram account was brought back to life. If you've got nice screenshots to be featured, feel free to contact the maintainer.

FlightGear on FlightSim.com

Flightgear has also a sub-forum on flightsim.com - just like the commercial flightsims. It is an opportunity to showcase what FG can do, get people curious and answer any questions they may have with regard to the software or the project.

Multiplayer events


Translators needed

En.gif The FlightGear Wiki still needs help for translating it into various languages. If you are interested in making the FlightGear Wiki multilingual, you can start by looking at Help:Translate.
Fr.gif Le wiki de FlightGear a toujours besoin d'aide pour être traduit en différentes langues. Si vous êtes intéressé par le rendre multilingue, commencez par lire Help:Traduire.
De.gif Das FlightGear Wiki benötigt immer noch Hilfe bei der Übersetzung in verschiedene Sprachen. Wenn Du Interesse daran hast, das FlightGear Wiki mehrsprachig zu machen, dann fang mit dem Help:Übersetzen an.
Nl.gif De FlightGear Wiki kan nog steed hulp gebruiken bij het vertalen van artikelen. Als je interesse hebt om de wiki meertalig te maken, raden we je aan om een kijkje te nemen bij Help:Vertalen.
Es.gif La wiki de FlightGear todavía necesita ayuda para traducirla a varios lenguajes. Si estás interesado en hacer la FlightGear wiki multilingüe, entonces comienza en Help:Traducir.
Cat.gif La wiki de FlightGear encara necessita ajuda per traduir-la a diverses llengües. Si esteu interessat en fer la wiki de FlightGear multilingüe, llavors comenceu a Help:Traduir.
Pt.gif A wiki de FlightGear ainda necessita de ajuda para traduzi-la em vários idiomas. Se estás interessado em tornar a wiki de FlightGear multi-lingual, por favor começa em Help:Traduzir.
Zh.gif FlightGear 百科仍然需要志愿者将其翻译为各种语言。如果你有兴趣让FlightGear百科支持更多语言, 你可以查看 Help:Translate.

FlightGear logos

If you want some graphic elements for your FlightGear-related site (such as a hangar or YouTube channel), please feel free to visit FlightGear logos for a repository of logos. And if you have some art skills, please don't hesitate to contribute with your own design creations.


The FlightGear project always needs screenshots, which show features that were added since the last release. These should be of good quality, especially in content and technical image properties. It is therefore recommended to use the best viable filter settings (anti-aliasing, texture sharpening, etc.). More info at Howto:Make nice screenshots.

Screenshot of the Month

FlightGear's Screenshot of the Month January 2019 is Rising around Wales by StuartC Rising around Wales by StuartC

If you want to participate in the screenshot contest of February, you can submit your candidate to this forum topic. Be sure to see the first post for participation rules. For purposes of convenience and organization, after all the entries have been submitted, a new forum topic will be started containing all shots in an easy-to-view layout. The voting will then take place there. Once the voting has finished, the best screenshot will be presented in the Newsletter edition of February.

Thanks for reading FlightGear Newsletter January 2019!