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G1000 Flightlog Landing & Flight Analysis Prototype

As most of you probably know, the G1000 can log a multitude of flight and engine information when you insert a SD card into the MFD.

There are some websites available for importing G1000 logs, one focused on engine data and the others only use the GPS data as far as I can tell. This seems a waste of potential to me. During my training for the night rating I developed a prototype for analyzing landings and flights using the vast array of data available in the log.

I am thinking about developing this into a fully fledged piece of software available to the general public. First I would like to know if there is some interest for such software and what your thoughts are on it.

Detailed Data
The data contains the altitude and vertical speed which we can plot.
The IAS (ploted with Vref) is of particular interest for the landing, allowing us to see how well the speed was kept on approach.
We can also see if we raised the nosewheel on landing sufficiently looking at the Pitch plot, and whether we made any too sharp turns looking at the Roll angle.

The G1000 also logs the normal and lateral acceleration (sideslip), here we can see a harder landing or one where we have some drift on touchdown.

Lateral View
Based on the GPS data we can plot the usual lateral/localizer view, but the G1000 also allows use to include wind flags.

Glidepath
We can also plot a glidepath based on this data.

Lateral View – Short Final
Thanks to the quite precise GPS data we also get good data on short final.

Energy Analysis
Another way of using the data which I am exploring is to calculated the specific energy of the plane and based upon this the specific power. Plotted together with the E1 RPM this essentially provides a view of the control loop for the landing and provided me the insight that my throttle changes are probably to large and therefore cause some oscillation of the energy resulting in altitude and/or IAS deviations.

Overview of Whole Flight
Of course plots are also provided for the whole flight.

Slip vs Roll
Using the acceleration data and roll angle we can also analyze our performance on flying coordinated, plotted as a density plot between roll angles and lateral acceleration (slip or ball deflection).

The full prototype output is available at:
http://www.vektorraum.com/tmp/g1000_flightanalysis/

Additional features I am exploring:

  • 3D rendering of the plane position with respect to time, like seen in flight data recorder reconstructions.
  • Using the engine data for statistical analysis, detecting performance changes. (This might be quite hard based on information available)

Looking forward to your thoughts on the usefulness of such software for training, continued learning and maybe engine management.

All the best,
Fabian

Fly for your dreams
LOAV

This is interesting stuff and very similar to the data analysis that we do in motorsport using MoTeC or Cosworth Pi or RaceLogic or whatever.

In that field it is now standard, even at novice level, to use data analysis both for teaching and for self improvement. The first thing that any half competitive driver will do after they get out of the car is look at their data and analyse what they did wrong. But there is a competitive motivation there and it would take a lot of self discipline to do the same after every flight.

Most important of all, you need instructors/coaches who can interpret the information for the student or they tend to get “lost” in all the data if they are not analytical or engineering minded.

It would be interesting to see your traces overlaid against a baseline from someone who is very experienced with the aircraft to see if the difference is noticeable.

May I ask how each altitude (BARO GPS ALT) is calculated and if you think to be able to parse other sources, too (e.g. SkyView, Avidyne, JPI, Flarm, etc.)?

mh
Inside the sky.
EDXE, EDXF, Germany

It is true that this kind of analysis is probably only interesting for the pilots with a higher engineering aptitude. I personally analyze parts of all my flights to learn something, or find out something I was unsure about and so on.

Regarding the altitudes: They are all logged as shown in the G1000 log. Documentation on this log format is pretty much impossible to come by so far. But from what I gathered:
Baro – the barometric altitude measured using the static system as shown on the PFD
MSL – the GPS altitude after geoid correction, based on the local MSL.
GPS – the GPS ellipsoidal altitude before applying geoid correction.

I also just discovered that one provider has some more data plotting functions for the G1000 which overlaps at least with some of the features I had in mind…

Fly for your dreams
LOAV

fabian wrote:

As most of you probably know, the G1000 can log a multitude of flight and engine information when you insert a SD card into the MFD.
I’ve never actually tried it. Do you have to buy an outrageously priced specially formatted card from Garmin or will a standard SD card do?

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

I think analysis of logs is useful for training. Especially for reviewing solo flights. Engine trend monitoring, definitely useful. I like to use logging to check for any limit exceedance. Especially good for aerobatics and that sort of thing. It’s without doubt useful where competition is involved. For casual flying, it could be interesting to some and it’s nice to have a tool if you want to investigate something.

Airborne_Again wrote:

Do you have to buy an outrageously priced specially formatted card from Garmin or will a standard SD card do?

You don’t need a special card from Garmin. However, that doesn’t mean any card will work. I think you need a “straight” SD, no HC or XC.

This is a good initiative.

I would suggest a simplified interface like CirrusReports to allow those who want to just review their track and times etc can do it. Also an advanced section for aeronautical engineers. I used to use it to put together my log book for flights. They are all saved. A bulk upload function is a good idea as well.

EGTK Oxford

Martin wrote:

You don’t need a special card from Garmin. However, that doesn’t mean any card will work. I think you need a “straight” SD, no HC or XC.

Ok. Those are not readily available anymore. Ordinary retail shops seem to have only SDHC or SDXC, although I found an electronics distributor who does have straight SD cards.

Do you know if 4 GB cards can be used, or only 2 GB?

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

You can use almost any size card. I think the fast cards work too.

EGTK Oxford

There was a big change once they went above 2GB and most consumer electronic devices from that era did not work with the 4GB ones. And a few that did work with the 4GB ones would not work with 8GB or bigger because there was another change at 8GB.

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Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
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