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Airspace Depiction Issues - probably UK specific.

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Using the default mapping for the UK we have the following issues 

Class D airspace (eg Brize Norton, Luton and London CTR )requiring permission to enter is shown exactly the same as the Military MATZ which is only recommended to ask permission and are often wholly inactive. Fly into a MATZ it's no problem, fly into Class D and you've busted airspace, inconvenienced thousands of people and will probably be getting a trip to the CAA to explain yourself - It surely cant be right these have the same depiction on the moving map? At the very least can we have a dotted boundary as opposed to a dashed one in line with the standard CAA 500k chart. 

It's also a little odd that a training aerodrome without an atz is in solid bright blue with internal dashes which entirely over-signifies their importance in relation to say an aerodrome with an atz - same width and colour line but dashed .. the std CAA representation of an ATZ  is large red dotted boundary with a light fill and this would be much better. The training airfield boundary should be made thinner or partially transparent to reduce it's significance on the chart and I'd personally like to see a light fill on the ATZ's and ideally a different shade to the CTR's and MATZ's. 

The HIRTA at croughton is shown as the same as the nearby training airfield - I know it's only advisory but shouldn't warning areas be signified differently and ideally in red at least for the border? 

Why are the two danger areas shown differently - the larger one around Weston-on-the-Green is much less obvious especially as it's partially obscured by the atz demarkation, it would be better if the internal shading was similar to the one to the west of Milton Keynes.

Finally Glider and Parachute drop sites (eg Hinton in the Hedges) are marked the same as the microlight site at Finmere. Again there is a clear differentiation on the CAA chart between these for very good safely reasons and this is lost on the EasyVFR chart, it's polite to avoid the overhead of places like Finmere but no more - avoiding the overhead of Hinton is essential. I know the info is there after a few clicks but I dont understand why even then the ASR (what does ASR stand for) over Finmere is depicted the same as the ASR over Hinton when the importance of them is entirely different and is clear on the paper chart. 

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Not much I can answer to this, sorry. But I will ask Bernd to take your comments onto account, or maybe he can explain why certain choices are made. 

Btw, personally I think ATZ’s and CTRs are clearly different due to CTRs beeing filled with an orange-ish transparency and ATZ’s are fully transparent. 

 

ASR=Aerial Sports and Recreational. Does it really matter if its glider or ULM? Though I do see parajumping is a different thing because these take up a lot more vertical airspace. I recall once in the past I considered using special icons for ASR areas based on their description; its very easy to paint a parachute on a parachuting ASR etc. To be honest I forgot about it (as with many things, sorry ;-)), but it might be an idea to implement? 

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Or wait, you mention MATZ, we are not really familiar with that, the ATZ in military CTRs are always in a class C or D on weekdays. But areas like boscomb down you mean you can overfly every day of the week without any clearance?

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It does matter if the glider site winch launches, it matters a lot! 

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Technically a matz is always class G - it’s never C or D. The atz inside the matz is or should be treated the same as any other atz. You can fly right through a matz any day without clearance although it’s not good airmanship. Boscombe down as an example isn’t active normally at weekends and then can be completely ignored but the atz remains

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You cannot fly though the centre ATZ of a MATZ at any time without clearance!...Unless you want to risk prosecution. The outer part,and stubs of the MATZ although technically Class 'G' can be flown through without permission but it is not advisable to do so and everyone I know always asks for a 'MATZ transit'. If you don't ask and the MATZ is active they will ask if you require a 'MATZ transit'. Crossing a MATZ without clearance could seriously spoil your day!

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Alan - I don't think you've said anything I didn't say in the previous post. We can argue all day about the relative safely issues of uncontrolled transiting a matz stub of a field like Benson with very limited heli traffic only Vs a busy ILS at a GA aerodrome like Oxford or Gloucester which EasyVFR don't notate at all but the point is moot. The issue here is that the notation on the chart for a class G matz which is only active at certain times is the same as for a permanently active class D CTR. Inadvertently or not cutting the corner of the former is inconsequential, cutting the corner of the latter will likely cost you 100's of pounds and a day off work to attend an airspace incursion course not to mention the inconvenience to the air traffic controller and all the commercial passengers he has to reroute to avoid you. They should be marked differently. 

 

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Rob - I appreciate that you have a product here that has to roll out across the whole of europe and needs to be relatively standardised and that I'm looking at the chart issues from a UK only point of view. My own position is that as the owner of a Dynon Skyview I'm tied into your product to the extent I need the EFIS update data and as such the additional cost of having the full product isn't great and I like the idea of a one stop solution and if EasyVFR4 can provide a viable alternative to Sky Demon (which lets face it has the largest share by some distance of the UK market) then I'll continue to support it. If I can help with things like pointing out chart issues to get EasyVFR to the point where it is a real alternative then that's a bonus and I'm happy to do it. I like the way you're going about this and the integration with Pilotaware but if we end up with charts that don't give me the information I need for planning or especially in flight without drilling down into the options then I will have to as some point either move to SkyDemon or renew my subscription to Runway HD - I do think the distinction between class G matz and Class D ctr airspace is important, as I do the way an aerodrome atz isn't immediately obvious as more important than a training  aerodrome without atz. Also important is glider winch launching or parachuting aren't clear and given the same significance as microlight sites which are offered no protection by the standard CAA charts. I realise this is simply my opinion, I'm passing it on as hopefully constructive critisism but if it doesn't meet your requirements of fitting into the wider european picture then so be it but I doubt I'll be the only UK based pilot looking for these things. Is it possible there is a user configurable colour scheme that can altered to suit in the same way we can for the dynon system? Did I see someone had already provided an alternative in one of your news articles?    I'm also still hopeful that the detail on the base map in the final system will be much greater if desired at high zoom levels - this would also be a big point of differentiation to sky demon.  

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Russ (and Alan of course), don’t worry about “UK only”, your contribution is enormously appreciated.  These kind of discussions are very interesting from a learning point of view, how GA is arranged differently in the various european countries. 

Your comments have made me realise the current airspace theme is using the CTR classification as trigger to “fill” the airspace interior with that orange-ing colour, probably in our expectation that CTRs are always class D or higher, or at least require a crossing clearance.  I think we should indeed change that, I asked advise on this from Stewart, he’s our native UK betacrew member. 

I also pointed our graphics master to this thread (he is a German pilot himself).

the parachuting/glider symbology is something we wanted to do a long time ago already, so no need to discuss that.

The technical structure of the airspacedepiction is in such a way its fairly easy to create multiple themes, so a UK theme should not be too hard. But in this case I think the issue isn’t a typical UK one; its a genuine “bug” (if it may called that way) to assume all CTRs should be treated the same. We discovered this in UK thanks to your contribution, and in how many other countries is the same situation? That is why I want to solve it in our default theme also, plenty of mainland-europe pilots fly to the UK.

it might take a week or two/three before this is addressed because I am about to leave for a vacation, sorry for that.

 

 

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I just wanted to add that Russ has reported this absolutely correctly.

I use this while flying gliders and although I understand its focus on powered flight, if you wanted to make it more 'glider friendly' then the airspace depiction needs to refelct his description.

Whilst obviously mindful of the particular situation, a MTAZ would not normally be considered a major obstacle if it needed to be penetrated. Courtesy would mean that a call might be made, but not in every situation, and our local RAF bases understand this.

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I just downloaded easy VFR 4. Unlike EV3, it does not seem to have UK CAA style chart theme for airspace data. This is a problem because the ATZs are not a solid colour like the CTZs. Penetrating a ATZ without calling is still an infringement, so really needs to be highlighted in a similar way to CTZs. For now I will continue to use EV3 on the app in flight, but may use EV4 on the PC for planning.

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