The latest CloudAhoy Pro release included significant improvements to scoring of visual approaches, especially those to a short or long landing.
For scoring a visual approach, we now focus on the 50’ AGL point rather than the runway’s threshold. We check the airspeed at that point, and its distance to the touchdown. The impact of this improvement is that most visual approaches will now get a higher score, because we no longer penalize for landing short or long.
Example: Short Landing
This is an example of a visual approach. The 50 AGL point is annotated on the graph.
To score this approach we consider the airspeed at that point, as well as the touchdown distance from that point.
Short Landing, the 50 AGL point is before the runway
By clicking the Info button, you can get information about the touchdown point:
Click or tap the Info button to see Touchdown Info
This is a short landing: the 50 AGL point is before the runway, touchdown is at 522’ from threshold.
Note that this runway has a displaced threshold so the pilot felt comfortable landing short.
Timeline at 50 AGL – aircraft is before the threshold
To get details about the scoring criteria, we can open the score table by clicking or tapping the arrow. The 50 AGL point is used to evaluate the speed and touchdown.
The detailed scoring, showing all the graders
Example: Long landing
This is a landing on the Green Dot at Oshkosh during AirVenture 2021.
Touchdown on the green dot in KOSH during AirVenture – the 50 AGL point is passed the threshold, as directed by ATC
Scoring is based on the 50 AGL point: Touchdown is 1252’ from the 50 AGL point, which is 2715’ from the threshold (see screenshot below), and the scoring has a grade 100 for the “touchdown distance” criteria.
Scoring is based on the 50 AGL point which is well past the threshold.
Runway Info showing touchdown at 2715’ – a long landing
* Reminder that for all graders, the goals are customizable and can be adjusted using the Envelope Editor, to fit your SOP
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This adjustment in scoring for visual approaches focuses on the 50 AGL point – taking into account that when flying visually, pilots may choose to land at a point that is not necessarily 1000 ft from the threshold. This improved scoring applies retroactively – when you debrief any past flight in your account, it will automatically be re-analyzed and the score will reflect the revised and improved grading.
This is a step in the continuous improvement of the analyzer which makes the scoring increasingly more accurate.