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3. Communication


At the bottom of the scope you will find the communication area shown above. The area marked A is the field where you communicate with other pilots using text, called the Pilot-Comm field. Commands available will be discussed in Chapter 3.1.1 Controlling with text. The field marked B is an indicator for voicetransmission. When you issue a voicecommand by pressing Ctrl the indicator will turn red while Ctrl is held down indicating a transmission is being done. How to control using voice is discussed in Chapter 3.1.2 Controlling with voice. Finally the field marked C is the ATC-Comm field used when issuing or accepting handoff to/from other controllers. The only valid command in that field is "+" followed by the aircraft datacode found either on the flightstrip (see Chapter 2.2) or on the aircraft datatag (see Chapter 2.3).

3.1 Communicating with pilots

Communication with pilots can be done in two ways, either via textcommands transmitted through the Pilot-Comm field or via voicecommands spoken into a microphone. We will first take a look at the textcommands available and how you use text to control aircraft.

3.1.1 Controlling with text

All text commands are issued in the Pilot-Comm field. To place cursor in that field just tap CTRL and the cursor will appear. Before you can give any commands you must specify what aircraft youīre about to communicate with. This is done by entering the aircraft callsign into the Pilot-Comm field followed by a Space. Then you can enter as many commands you want seperated by spaces, and to transmit your commands press Enter. First let us look at all commands available before showing some typical ways to use these commands.

CommandExplanationKey shortcut
CCContact control [if you want realism, add the actual freq after CC, compare CT]N/A
CT XXX.yyContact tower on frequency XXX.yyN/A
DM XXX,YYYYYDescend and maintain Flightlevel XX(X), or altitude YYYY(Y)Downarrow
CM XXX,YYYYYClimb and maintain Flightlevel XX(X), or altitude YYYY(Y)Uparrow
TL xxxTurn left heading xxxLeftarrow
TR xxxTurn right heading xxxRightarrow
FH xxxFly heading xxx. Pilot will turn the shortest wayN/A
IS xxxIncrease speed to xxx ktsPageup
RS xxxReduce speed to xxx ktsPagedown
PD XXXXXProceed direct to Fixname/VOR/NDBN/A
CI XXXCleared ILS approach runway XX(X)N/A
CV XXXCleared visual approach runway XX(X)N/A
SHReport headingN/A

In the table above there is a Key shortcut specified for some commands. These can be used instead of actually typing f.i. the letters CM. By pressing Uparrow these letters will be written automatically and you just have to enter the altitude/flightlevel.

Now letīs take a look at some example communications:

Entered command Actual interpretation
SAS2023 TL 200 CM 120 Scandinavian 2023 turn left heading 200, climb to flightlevel 120
BAW1544 PD ERK IS 270 Speedbird 1544 proceed direct to Erken, increase speed to 270
FIN453 CT 118.5 Finnair 453 contact tower 118.5

When entering a command perhaps you enter a command incorrectly and would like to change it before sending it using Enter. To get to the position where you want to change something you must use ALT+Leftarrow and ALT+Rightarrow since Leftarrow/Rightarrow alone is a shortcut-key for TL (turn left) and TR (turn right). If you have already sent an incorrect line you may bring up the last transmitted line by pressing "-". There will be some more examples in Chapter 4 where we discuss how to control traffic in more specific terms.

3.1.2 Controlling using voice

IMPORTANT! First of all you MUST run the Speech setup - Train profile. This can be found under Windows Control Panel - Speech. Within the tab "Speech Recognition" you will find a button labelled "Train Profile". You must complete at least the first setup to be able to use voice. If you donīt complete it, the result using Speech is very unpredictable. Make sure you only use the "Default Speech Profile". But, the more you train your profile the better the speech recognintion engine will become. Have also found that by using it within the ATC simulator it becomes better and better.

Ok, you have now completed some voice training. Now it is time to practice it in the real environment. You start a voice transmission by holding down the Ctrl-key (notice the red indicator light to the right of the pilot-comm field). You end it by releasing the button.

The first you must say is the callsign for the aircraft, f.i. "Scandinavian one one two nine" and then followed by the commands. This is a list of expected phrases that can be used while controlling (Words within () is optional):

General command Example communication Analogous textcmd
Turn left (heading) XXX "Turn left heading one two zero" TL 120
Go left (heading) XXX "Go left one two zero" TL 120
Turn right (heading) XXX "Turn right heading one two zero" TR 120
Go right (heading) XXX "Go right heading one two zero" TR 120
Fly (heading) XXX "Fly heading one zero zero" FH 100
Descend and maintain (flightlevel/altitude) XXX (feet) "Descend and maintain two thousand five hundred feet" DM 2500
Descend to (flightlevel/altitude) XXX (feet) "Descend to flightlevel one two zero" DM 120
Climb and maintain (flightlevel/altitude) XXX (feet) "Climb and maintain four thousand feet" CM 4000
Climb to (flightlevel/altitude) XXX (feet) "Climb to flightlevel one six zero" CM 160
Increase speed XXX (knots) "Increase speed two eight zero" IS 180
Reduce speed XXX (knots) "Reduce speed one eight zero" RS 180
Speed XXX (knots) "Speed two eight zero knots" N/A
Proceed direct to XXX "Proceed direct to Tebby" PD TEB
Go direct to XXX "Go direct to Erken" PD ERK
Cleared direct to XXX "Cleared direct to Hammar" PD HMR
Proceed to XXX "Proceed to Tebby" PD TEB
Contact (Stockholm) control (on) (XXX.xx) "Contact Stockholm control" CC
Contact (Arlanda) tower (on) XXX.xx "Contact tower on one one eight decimal five" CT 118.5
Cleared ILS approach (runway) XXx "Cleared ILS approach zero one left" CI 01L
Cleared visual approach (runway) XXx "Cleared visual approach runway two six" CV 26
Say (present/current) heading "Say heading" SH
Report (present/current) heading "Report present heading" SH

At first the speechrecognition may seem like more trouble than fun but hang in there because it will be worth it when you start to direct traffic with fast and precise voicecommands just like the real controllers do!

Chapter 2 The Scope Back to Index Chapter 4 Controlling traffic
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