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Main Screen


The Main Screen, also known as the General Tab, is the first screen the user sees after successfully logging in to LD. It can be broken down into several sections, which we will see in this article.
FLIGHT PLAN

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Here you will be able to choose a variety of options in order to start filling out your flight plan. Most of the options are drop down boxes which are automatically populated from our database. Once you fill out all the options, then the Generate Trip Folder button will become active, allowing you to have LD build your flight plan and trip folder. Options available are as follows:
  • Airline
  • Aircraft
  • Origin Airport
  • Destination Airport
  • Alternate Airport (Optional)
  • Ident (Flight Number)
  • Duration
  • Altitude (Optional)
There are also a few other pieces of data displayed which are not user selectable or editable, such as the amount of passengers or cargo, distance and route. These will be automatically generated by LD and displayed for you after it generates the trip folder.

If you leave the cruising altitude blank, LD will assign you one based on the direction of travel.

Just below the Flight Plan group of options, we have a couple of buttons and checkboxes which are equally important and these are:
  • Pause @ Distance with an option to set the distance from the arrival airport: As the name implies, this option allows you to have LD automatically pause the simulator for you, when your aircraft reaches the distance set on the textbox. This is very helpful for long flights where you might be away from the computer when the aircraft is nearing the time for the initial descent.
  • Divert To Alternate: If weather at your arrival airport dictates you divert to an alternate airport or for any other reason, by clicking this button you will put LD in divert to alternate mode.
  • Declare Emergency: This button is to be used during an emergency where you will need to land the aircraft ASAP.
  • Comments: Here the pilot has the ability to enter any comments reference the flight. These comments will be added to the PIREP submitted at the end of the flight.
The buttons on the right hand side will become available as the user meets certain criteria. For example, the Generate Trip Folder button will become available once the user has filled out all required inputs on the flight plan. The Divert to Alternate and Declare Emergency buttons will only become available once the aircraft is in the air and the Submit PIREP button will only become available once the flight has been completed.


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ACARS MESSAGING

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LD comes with an integrated chat system that allows pilots to talk to each other in real-time. Pilots also have the ability to "whisper" to one another in a private manner, thus providing the ability to carry on private conversations.

The main window on the left shows all messages sent publicly by users as well as system messages put out by the LD server.

The window on the right will show a list of all pilots currently logged in to the system. Below these two windows, you have the following:
  • Message textbox: Here you can type your message to be displayed publicly to everyone or privately via the whisper button.
  • Say: By clicking the SAY button, your messages will be broadcasted to everyone on the system.
  • Whisper: In order to send a private message to another pilot, you must first select the pilot's name, then click the whisper button. The message will be sent privately to the selected pilot.
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PILOT INFORMATION

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The Pilot Information Tab will display more detailed information on any pilot currently logged in to the messaging system. When the user clicks on a pilot's name, the following information will be displayed:
  • Name: Pilot's name
  • Flights: Total number of flights flown and total hours
  • Flying: Flight number and aircraft being used
  • Flight Route: Filed flight route
  • Altitude: Current altitude
  • Heading: Current heading
  • Speed: Current speed
  • Status: Current flight status
  • LD Version: Version of LD being used
  • Last Update: Time of last ACARS update
  • Carrier logo will also be displayed: Logo of carrier being flown
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DEPARTURE, ARRIVAL AND ALTERNATE METAR/TAF

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As part of the pre-flight planning process, it is imperative to know what are the weather conditions at your departure and arrival airports. Even more important is the ability to select an alternate airport in the event the weather at the arrival airport dictates an alternate be filed/used. For these purposes, LD allows the pilot to search for the METAR/TAF report of any airport by entering the airport's ICAO code in the textbox and clicking Search.

A detailed report of both METAR and TAF reports will be displayed. The METAR/TAF for the departure and arrival airports will automatically be displayed when the trip folder is generated. At any time during the flight, the pilot can refresh this information by clicking the corresponding refresh button. All this information is readily accessible to the pilot and thus the reason why it was placed on the main screen of LD.


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STATUS BAR
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The status bar on the bottom of the application will show up-to-date information such as:
  • Status: Current LD status
  • Phase: Current phase of flight
  • Flight Time: Timer which displays the current flight time
  • AIRAC Cycle: Current AIRAC cycle for airport charts and flight planner
  • FPS: Real-time simulator FPS counter
  • Pilot: Pilot's full name and Pilot ID number
  • Hours: Pilot's Total Hours
  • Flights: Pilot's Total Flights completed


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