Amazing free flight simulator software for your Windows OS
|Latest Version||FlightGear 2020.3.19|
Windows 7/Windows 8/Windows 10/Windows 11
|Updated||October 19, 2023|
The goal of the project is to create a sophisticated and open flight simulator framework for use in research or academic environments, pilot training, as an industry engineering tool, for DIY-ers to pursue their favorite interesting flight simulation idea, and last but certainly not least as a fun, realistic, and challenging desktop flight simulator.
FlightGear's flight dynamics engine (JSBSim) is used in a 2015 NASA benchmark to judge new simulation code to the standards of the space industry. It's used professionally for research and development, as well as non-professionally. FlightGear 2020.3.8 and later has 3d models of buildings, roads, cities etc. based on Open StreetMap (OSM) data and automatic generation, for the whole world.
FlightGear implements extremely accurate time of day modeling with the correctly placed sun, moon, stars, and planets for the specified time and date. It can track the current computer clock time in order to correctly place the sun, moon, stars, etc. in their current and proper place relative to the earth. If it’s dawn in Sydney right now, it’s dawn in the sim right now when you locate yourself in virtual Sydney. The sun, moon, stars, and planets all follow their correct courses through the sky.
It has the ability to model a wide variety of aircraft. Currently, you can fly the 1903 Wright Flyer, strange flapping wing “ornithopters”, a 747 and A320, various military jets, and several light singles. It has the ability to model those aircraft and just about everything in between.
The app has the infrastructure to allow aircraft designers to build fully animated, fully operational, fully interactive 3d cockpits (which even update and display correctly from external chase plane views.)
Itallows users and aircraft designers access to a very large number of internal state variables via numerous internal and external access mechanisms. These state variables are organized into a convenient hierarchal “property” tree.
Features and Highlights
- Over 20,000 real-world airports included in the full scenery set.
- Correct runway markings and placement, correct runway, and approach lighting.
- Taxiways available for many larger airports (even including the green center line lights when appropriate.)
- Sloping runways (runways change elevation like they usually do in real life.)
- Directional airport lighting that smoothly changes intensity as your relative view direction changes.
- World scenery fits on 3 DVDs.
- Accurate terrain worldwide, based on the most recently released SRTM terrain data.) 3 arc second resolution (about 90m post spacing) for North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia.
- Scenery includes all vmap0 lakes, rivers, roads, railroads, cities, towns, land cover, etc.
- Nice scenery night lighting with ground lighting concentrated in urban areas (based on real maps) and headlights visible on major highways. This allows for realistic night VFR flying with the ability to spot towns and cities and follow roads.
- Scenery tiles are paged (loaded/unloaded) in a separate thread to minimize the frame rate hit when you need to load new areas.