Well as I promised (11 months ago), here’s a tutorial on making ATC Taxi Networks in WorldEditor v1.2. Hopefully this clears up some misunderstandings about how the pieces of the system work and how they’re meant to be used. Perhaps the next video tutorial will be on creating Airport flows to teach ATC which runways get used for which operations.

Part 1 of 5

Part 2 of 5

Part 3 of 5

Part 4 of 5

Part 5 of 5

About Chris Serio

Chris is an electrical engineer and commercial pilot who got roped into software development by Ben because misery loves company.

28 comments on “Screencast: Creating ATC Taxi Networks in WorldEditor v1.2

  1. Very, very nice indeed! I just watched the videos and now I know what to do. Thanks a lot, Chris!

    On a second note, not totally OT; it would be very welcome to hear some new general info on OSM and alpilotx’s “Tree lines and Farms”. Do you think an update to the OSM grid would be possible anytime soon? Do you have plans to make it possible to download updated OSM scenery? A lot of users, as I understand, have put a lot of work to not only improve OSM but also to make roads, lakes and rivers look much better in XP. It would be very welcome to hear some news about this.

    Thanks again for the atc tutorials, Chris!

  2. Well done, Chris 🙂 Especially the explanation of the “ILS Area” thing makes totally sense now to me.
    One question remains unanswerd: When creating an ATC Taxi-Segment on a runway, I have the option to de-select any “Departures” or “Arrival” data. Doing so, the colour of this particular segment on the runway becomes _white_ . As you described a while ago here //developer.x-plane.com/2012/01/atc-taxi-layouts/
    “White segments are runways…” I expected it this way.
    Is there any difference in the behaviour of ATC (especially AI planes) ?

    1. Hi Ron, I should have double checked this detail before making the video but i just looked at the code now and much like the runway NAME, the runway “hold-short” properties are completely ignored by the sim because if an edge/segment IS A runway, of course aircraft should be forced to hold short of it. So set whatever you like but if you say “this segment is a 16L/34R runway” then it’s going to automatically have the properties of Departure/Arrival 16L/34R. WED’s choice of color is irrelevant and perhaps a bit confusing.

      1. Thanks Chris, to clarify this. It was just this kinda “Am I doing the right thing” wich left me a bit unsecured.

  3. Great tutorial, thank you. Taxiways for Valley and others will be coming soon! These screencasts are a great tool, way clearer than any printed manual. Thanks again.

  4. Fantastic. I tried to create an ATC flow for EIDW in the past few days and only got the sim to crash. I abandoned the thing in frustration, but after watching this screencast I decided to start again. I just took of from my new EIDW and it works beautifully! Hopefully hundreds of apt.dat files will start showing up in the download manager now, with accurate ATC flows. Thanks Chris, much appreciated!

      1. Precisely, I was creating taxi flows for taxiways only, never crossed my mind that I should have done it for runways as well! 😀

        1. I made the same assumption…that arrival and departure options were default for runways so I didn’t add them. Fixing all that now. What I actually meant on the comment for you was “Airport Flows” not taxiway or runway flows. Airport flows allow you to set rules for wind speed/direction, time of operation, specific arrival/departure runway rules, etc. In my early experimentation, I left some rules partial (unknowingly) and that caused X-Plane to crash. I’m going to try flows again, now that the runways have options and see if that changes performance because it seemed that the rules I tried previously were flat out being ignored.

  5. Chris, will you be addressing flows soon? The APT1000 file spec says that the runway in use rule selects the “first to pass”. Is this a bit mis-stated because your KSEA obviously uses 16L and 16C simultaneously. Perhaps the rule is evaluated more frequently than we anticipate?

    Thanks for the videos, they definitely cleared up some confusing issues.


    1. Did you read the blog post? 🙂 I said flows were next but I don’t know how “soon”. As you can see, I was 11 months off on my last estimate so we’ll see the next time i have a quiet house to do a recording.

      KSEA may use both runways but as you can see by looking at the filters, they’re used at different times. 16C is not used for heavies and is only used for arrivals. 16L is not used for prop arrivals etc. They’re not the same. As the docs say, it uses the first runway that matches the situation. Flows aren’t just used to determine the “actives” but also which runway tower/approach assigns an aircraft for its operation.

      1. Of course I didn’t read the post :-). I heard about the videos elsewhere and went straight to YouTube, then straight to comments here. You confirmed my suspicion though. The confusing part is when ATIS declares a whole slough of runways as “active” but all of the arrivals/departures occur on one (this is with autogen flows…not at SEA). I think the videos cleared up some misconceptions and we can experiment with flows until you get the next one out.

        Thanks again!

  6. Excellent posts, well worth the time because it is not the big items that count here but the slight details that count and you covered them really well Chris.
    Two items to note on the ATC, on many runways the traffic enters in the centre section of the runway and then taxis to the end to turn around for departure, I understand that it will be on the red zone doing this but I have noticed they will all just pile up at the end of the runaway not knowing that they then have turn around to depart in the opposite direction?
    The biggest annoyance after watching the system in operation (for months) is the sheer amount of calloffs per runway usually about 4 to 1 in landings, why can’t the aircraft landing separation be far more wider than this?… I feel this item is really letting the system down at this point…. Cheers

  7. Squashing the WED 1.2b1 ALT-ENTER bug in Windows to change attributes of all selected elements en-masse will hopefully become a bit of a priority now, as the functionality is sorely missed when working with the taxiway layouts.

    Great tutorials… I’m laying down a network now and will hopefully get a chance to see it in action later on today.


  8. Hi Chris

    Great job on the tutorials. This is exactly what I was looking for. You did a great job explaining things so even a dummie like me can understand them. With that said, I do have a question about ramp start points.

    I have, on occasion created some start points that I would rather not have ATC use to generate or “spawn” aircraft. These are mainly at gate parking spaces and require you to power back rather than taxi forward. I’m assuming that power backs are not supported in the ATC engine so the aircraft that generates at “Gate 5” will just add power and taxi through the terminal to join the nearest taxi segment.

    I noticed that you can select what type of aircraft you want to use this start point, and if you don’t select any, the start point shows “None” for the type aircraft.

    So the question is this. If I select “None” for the type of aircraft at the start point, will the ATC engine just ignore this start point, or will it generate “any, or all types” of aircraft at this point?

    Thanks for great tutorials. They were worth waiting for.


    1. Well that’s actually a WED bug. You should not be able to pick “none” as an option. A gate has to have SOME kind of aircraft associated with it. X-Plane is not currently using these types yet but it will in the future.

  9. Hi!

    Thanks for tutorials; they helped me to finish taxi layouts in a scenery (Tagoror). It seems to work fine but… I have a problem:

    The scenery has standard runways and, also, a water runway. If I land on main (concrete) runway following ATC, then ATC says me to follow taxi until arrive to… water parking! (you can see here and here)

    …and I can’t avoid that at WED design time… Or I can?

    If someone wants to test scenery with taxi layouts: //dl.dropbox.com/u/1126231/X-Plane/APT_TAGN_1.1b2.7z


    1. Edit your scenery and set your ramp types (the water ones) to “misc”. There’s also a bug in X-Plane now preventing us from reading those types properly so the bug will still exist but that’s in my court to fix. You should have your scenery ready for the fix which will likely be in 10.20.

      1. Yes, ramp types are setted to Misc. Also, helipads ramps are setted to misc with helicopter equipment but doesn’t work at this moment.

        I hope it will be fixed in 10.20 😉

  10. Awesome video Chris! Went back and fixed up some confusion for my AI aircraft based on the screencast. Can’t wait for the ATC Airport Flow video! Hmmm – maybe that “export for submission button” mentioned in the May ’12 blog entry will be in your next WED beta and we can start flooding Robin with taxi flows!

    Keep up the great work!

    1. BTW: I think it’s a great idea to crowd source taxi-flows. Even if submissions are 80% accurate, it makes the experience 80% better than the autogen….

Comments are closed.