Implement weather and terrain API’s for aircraft developers to implement accurate radar, predictive windshear, EGPWS, and METAR/wind uplink

Currently, the only way to obtain weather and terrain radar is through the BingMap JS interface, which only renders a static image that can barely be customized at all (and only cosmetic customizations). Therefore, this means that high fidelity third party aircraft are severely limited by the lack of a native SDK API for retrieving weather, terrain, wind, and METAR data.

Please implement this API functionality in the sim as soon as possible, as it is a huge blocker for practically every third party aircraft developer, and there are no possible workarounds.

I already posted this in the developer forum, however I will copy over the details of this feature request:

Add weather API functions for WASM and JS gauges which can accomplish the following:

  • Return precipitation data over a defined area, in multiple customizable layers (dependent on severity), so that custom weather radars can be implemented by third party developers
  • Return wind/windshear data over a defined area, so that custom predictive windshear systems can be
  • Return turbulence data over a defined area, in multiple customizable layers (dependent on severity - e.g. A320 weather radar displays turbulence in 2 layers: moderate and severe), so that it can be incorporated into custom weather radars
  • Return hazard data over a defined area (returning distinct location(s) of possible lightning and hail) so that it can be incorporated into custom weather radars
  • Create an API which allows for retrieving weather data (especially temperature, pressure, and current winds) at any given waypoint, facility, and/or location (defined by latitude, longitude, and altitude). Winds aloft data such as this is critical for creating a proper VNAV (vertical navigation system) which relies on having this data for proper descent profile predictions as well as cruise/fuel burn predictions
  • Create an API which allows for retrieving the current METAR at any facility, as well as ATIS at any airport that supports it.

Examples of turbulence/hazards in real-life weather radars:

image

For terrain data (developer forum post is here):

"Having a native API present for both WASM and JS gauges which can return terrain elevation data at multiple distinct points over a defined area is necessary for creating a proper custom terrain radar, as well as vertical situation display, and enhanced GPWS.

There is a function in P3D which accomplishes this via SimConnect - however, given the lack of an efficient data bus between WASM and JS, also having this available natively in JS would be greatly appreciated:"

To be clear this is only to READ weather data, not modify.

58 Likes

Voted, but can’t help to think it is part of a broader need to rework the entire weather system. A flight simulator without a proper way to set specific ceilings and visibility (RVR) for foggy instrument approach practice is missing the mark (IMO). But happy to vote in both this thread and one of the visibility threads if it helps!

44 Likes

It definite need a API for third party plane addon,the thrd party airliner don`t have terrain and weather radar is unacceptable

5 Likes

I thought Aerosoft had the same problem with the CRJ on their release. And Aerosoft said that they were waiting for Asobo to implement the weather radar in the SDK.

The CRJ was released back in March 16th. It’s been 5 months since the release of the CRJ and Asobo still hasn’t implemented the weather and terrain radar in the SDK? What?

20 Likes

Voted. The entire weather system needs work. And I don’t mean just making it work, consistently. But storms are very “meh” and lightning is a joke and thunderstorms barely do anything when flying through them, etc.

16 Likes

Voted. MSFS has a lot of potential but it is very frustrating to see that this has still not been implemented/fixed. Now that the xbox release is done, I’m hoping to see significant improvements made to pave the way for the high fidelity airliners that 3rd party devs are ready to bring.

11 Likes

There is a bit missing there :wink:

1 Like

I don’t know about that. So why can the weather radar be done using Javscript/HTML? My understanding is, Javascript/HTML is also using the MSFS SDK to access the weather radar.

Perhaps the weather radar is not available at the C++ level of the SDK? Aerosoft said they can do the weather radar for the CRJ if they decide to use Javascript/HTML. But Aerosoft said they prefer to access the weather radar in C++ so they are waiting for the C++ version of the weather radar in the SDK.

2 Likes

Agreed 100%. Absolutely think the weather system either needs to be revisited and personally I think it should be opened up to 3rd party devs.

11 Likes

it is absolutely necessary, it is no longer possible, a plane without radar is incomprehensible especially when you have the mountains between the runway so Asobo move

2 Likes

Maybe a good question to ask for the next Dev Q&A ?

Voted. We really should have had this implemented during the first round of weather fixes.

2 Likes

This is a must have in the SDK

2 Likes

First time seeing a wishlist item get so many votes in so little time. How is it possible?

edit: oh ok

I’m all for this and voted, just disappointed that a third party dev is allowed to solicit votes while other items have been ignored for months.

Voted!
Thanks for bringing detailed information about the limitations. I keep reading limitations everywhere but nobody ever explains what the limitation is about.
I hope Asobo can implement an API asap.

7 Likes

I didn’t understand a word you said, but if you guys want it, then it’s important enough. Hope this leads the way to a better weather system for both simmers and devs.

3 Likes

Voted, FBW team you need all the support for the great job you’re doing for the sim community, thanks and keep forward

6 Likes

Voted
_
I think they deserve an exception, the Fly-By-Wire mod greatly improves the OG A320 Neo experience and is probably one of the most downloaded add-ons for this sim.
(MS/Asobo gets a “cut” anyway considering it might be motivation enough for some people to purchase the sim)

Also, they are not (imo) breaking forum rules (petitioning) as those don’t apply outside of it :wink:

8 Likes

I would love to see that kind of detail on the weather radar. I also hope Asobo fixes or re-enables the turbulence or gives us an option for realistic turbulence. The weather outside is frightful, the plane glides on delightful.

4 Likes