STAR's, Transitions and Approaches!

CHRISB440 Guest

Somebody help please!!!! Crying or Very sad

Ok, here is the situation - i am using FS9 with the 737 Pilot in Command Add-On - a nifty piece of the software is a FMS by the way of a CDU. This allows you to program your departure, en-route and approach phases of flight.....great, all fine and well - the problem i am having is the relationship between STAR's, Transitions and can select many options on the FMC and to try and help i have downloaded the approach plates for 09L of EGLL - did this help??? Not on your nelly!!! lol

What i want to know is,

a) What is a STAR?

b) How does this relate to a Transition?

and finally,

c) How does this relate to a runway.......!!!

Any help would be much appreciated!!! 😀

Chris Bennett aka chrisb440

"It was like that when i found it!!"

9 Responses

Pro Member Captain
Karlw Captain

I have the pmdg 747 and 737 which come with manuals see if the website you got it from has any free manuals or check avsim

chrisb440 Guest

Hi Karlw - thanks for your reply.....

Been there, tried that - no online manuals - well, there is one but its payware and of absolutley no use whatsoever - been scouring through forums till my eyes have been rolling in their - i know that the add on is supposed to amke it very life like, but

I have tried some 'proper' aviation websites, but the jargon goes way over - its hard to see the wood for the trees!! 🙂

Thanks anyway fella - undaunted - i will carry on with my quest - i think the Holy Grail might be easier to find! :

Chris Bennett aka chrisb440

"It was like that when i found it"

Pro Member Chief Captain
CRJCapt Chief Captain

What's a STAR?
Nothing magical about a STAR. It stands for Standard Terminal Arrival Route. Almost all STARS can be flown in anything(Cessna 172). A few are marked for FMS aircraft but 9 out of 10 can be flown with just a VOR receiver and DME. It's just a standard way that ATC wants you to approach a busy airport. Large airports usually have several for aircraft arriving from different directions. They will usually get you to a fix or navaid near the airport (15-30 miles, approx.).

From that point, normally you would be radar vectored by ATC to the final approach course for the instrument approach in use or visual approach. Some STARS have a transition course that leads from the last fix in the STAR to the Initial Approach Fix(IAF) for a instrument approach. The transition is not used much but some locations don't have radar coverage at low altitude so you're on your own. STARS may list different fixes and altitudes based on the runway in use when you arrive but they don't really have anything to do with the runway. 🙂

Last edited by CRJCapt on Sat Sep 16, 2006 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total
chrisb440 Guest

Aah....... (light starts dawning)...........

Thanks for your message CRJ helped......

Soooooo, let me see if i got this straight - lets say im flying from EGCC to EGLL, IFR. the STAR charts for EGLL say that an approach from the north west is best using the BNN (Bovingdon) STAR. There are 2 STAR entry routes, depending if your flight plan calls for you to proceed to the HON or DTY VOR's - the two routes have different BNN 'route numbers' (which incidentally, are listed on my FMC STAR selections). These two routes lead to the WCO VOR, which in turn then leads to the BNN VOR.

Once im at the BNN VOR, im assuming that i then use the BNN Transition Initial Approach Procedures plate, as this transition should lead me to the FAP/FAF for runway 09L at EGLL. Once at this point i then refer to the Instrument Approach Chart for 09L for speed and altitude to intercept the ILS Glidescope - god willing im assuming that if i take her in manually and control my speed, altitude i should end up on (i wish) or near (more likely) the runway??

Does this sound right - or am i way off course...... (no pun intended!)


Pro Member Captain
Bindolaf Captain

Read this thread if you want, I posted a couple of things about STARs with pictures included.

The explanation CRJ Capt gave is fine though 🙂

As for your specific example, STARs have names followed (in Europe) by a number or (in the US) by the transition point. I don't have the chart you do (if you want to post it we can discuss it), but some STARs for EGLL are OCK1A, OCK1D, OCK1F, TOM1A, TOM1D, TOM1F. The letter changes, depending on which runway you are approaching. In the US on the other hand it doesn't matter which runway, they do direction (from the north, east etc) and the names look like this:

"AWSON.AWSON1" This is a STAR name for Atlanta Hartsfield and it means that the STAR starts at the AWSON intersection and you follow the chart called "AWSON1".

Now, a STAR contains more information than waypoints. It shows max (and min) altitudes, holds, turns and much much more. Start with an easy airport of your choice, download the charts and give it a spin! Hand fly the approaches to familiarize yourself.

And as I said, if you want to post a chart here we can discuss it.

Pro Member Chief Captain
CRJCapt Chief Captain

I'm not familiar with that STAR but you seem to have the correct idea. Bindolaf is correct, there are many more aspects to a STAR. I was attempting to give a very simple description of a STAR. 🙂

chrisb440 Guest

OH MY GOD...............IT WORKED!!!!! 😀

Hey, thanks a lot for your help guys, i programmed my FMC with the STAR, Transition from end of STAR and runway - hey presto - it was soooooo cool.......once i got locked onto the localiser, let things settle down and then disengaged the AP - followed the glide path, deployed flaps and spoliers according to speed - got the gear locked and came slap down right on the middle of the runway!!!!!


Thanks guys, if it hadnt have been with your help i would never have done it!! Jees, feel like i have won the lottery - its a big achievement from being a casual flier to being a proper simmer!! 🙂

Pro Member Chief Captain
Solotwo Chief Captain
chrisb440 Guest

Hi Solotwo -

Thanks for your message - i had a look at the website, and it helps a lot - thanks - i was gonna upload a few approach plates for EGLL, but found that it was way too complicated for little old i said im my previous post, i got there eventually and it was a great feeling to have pulled it off, but the guide you suggested will help even more - thanks a lot for taking the time to post it fella!!


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