Stored routes or Computer generated routes?

FlyNKD

Well-Known Member
Just curious how other shops operate - do you just select a stored route in the system when building a flight plan or do you let the computer create a route for you?

The idea of a software being able to create a perfect route in seconds is intriguing, but is it reliable? On the other hand, its tedious to update stored routes when the navdata updates, especially when you have hundreds.
 

who'swho

Don't hesitate. Penetrate!
Just curious how other shops operate - do you just select a stored route in the system when building a flight plan or do you let the computer create a route for you?

The idea of a software being able to create a perfect route in seconds is intriguing, but is it reliable? On the other hand, its tedious to update stored routes when the navdata updates, especially when you have hundreds.
We use a combination of everything. Some routes we used a pre-stored route, typically due to permits. Sometimes we have the software create a route, if that's wonky we'll manually fix it as necessary.
 

Eskhobbs

Well-Known Member
Depends on the software and where in the world you're flying. For domestic US flying a majority of the software I've used is typically pretty good with the auto routing, international routing on the other hand has been hit or miss.

On the business side of aviation it seems like Route Advisor in ForeFlight is really good with CFMU validated routes.
 

QXDX

Well-Known Member
Just curious how other shops operate - do you just select a stored route in the system when building a flight plan or do you let the computer create a route for you?

The idea of a software being able to create a perfect route in seconds is intriguing, but is it reliable? On the other hand, its tedious to update stored routes when the navdata updates, especially when you have hundreds.
As I told my trainees, YOU'RE the Dispatcher, not the computer. By all means use the automation tools available at your disposal, but you need to check and verify the results.
 

4EngineETOPS

Well-Known Member
A lot of flight planning systems are based on core engines built in the 90s or early 2000s. Therefore, many of the route "optimizers" are not so optimal and build some pretty strange routes. There's a lot of things to consider when building a route, just in terms of the structure of the route itself. SIDs, STARs, ADR/AARs (adapted departure routes or adapted arrival routes: mandatory route segments before a STAR or after a SID), airways or direct/random/UPT, distance between waypoints, UPR rules, track structures and the routes to/from them, IFPS validation/RAD compliance, compliance with international AIPs and NOTAMs, restricted airspace, overflight permits, and a lot more. As you can see, that's a lot for an older flight planning engine to consider, especially considering that PBN, PBCS, and other changes in airspace structure have taken place since the engines were first designed. Sometimes, the routes produced to comply with all of those considerations can look pretty strange. I often find that I need to take routes generated by the flight planning system and modify them (sometimes extensively) by hand.
 

autosave36

Well-Known Member
Depends on the software and where in the world you're flying. For domestic US flying a majority of the software I've used is typically pretty good with the auto routing, international routing on the other hand has been hit or miss.

On the business side of aviation it seems like Route Advisor in ForeFlight is really good with CFMU validated routes.
Yep definitely pretty good. The one flaw is with mid east preferred routes. Those are definitely on a trust but verify level.
 

Delta Echo

Well-Known Member
For scheduled flights we have stored routes that ATC has green lighted. Naturally we can alter or build as needs dictate. Most non revenue requires a route built from scratch unless it is an existing scheduled city pair.
 

Dart_8992

Well-Known Member
Just to basically echo what everyone else is saying. It mostly a combination of all things. We have lots of predefined routes stored in the Flight Planning software, and for the most part we use these routes, or we use auto created routes by the software. But ultimately you are the dispatcher, not the software. The software is good at building routes for fuel efficiency, but it will gladly fly you thru a hurricane, volcanic ash or really any metrological condition not suitable for aviation. This is where you come in!
 

BruinsFan

Well-Known Member
My carriers flight planning system doesnt generate any routes; we have to either select a canned route or build one. Usually a separate department will build us a route based on Cost Analysis but there are reasons why I don't trust it 100 percent. Going forward, there are plans to replace the system with one that will generate routes for us, but it will still give us the option as dispatchers to set parameters or to pick our own route.
 

Luigi

Well-Known Member
When I was at a regional, it was probably 99% company routes. The 1% of the time I built a route was either repos or weather avoidance. Now at a major it depends on the desk. If I’m working transcons I’ll probably let the computer build me an optimized route about 50% of the time which I’ll then tweak until I’m happy. I’ll never go with a fully computer generated route. If I’m working a west coast desk, it’s always gonna be company routes. Luckily we always have a few options for our company routes and they have all been approved by ATC.
 

Flagship_dxer

Legacy Airline Dispatcher
My carriers flight planning system doesnt generate any routes; we have to either select a canned route or build one. Usually a separate department will build us a route based on Cost Analysis but there are reasons why I don't trust it 100 percent. Going forward, there are plans to replace the system with one that will generate routes for us, but it will still give us the option as dispatchers to set parameters or to pick our own route.
I remember just a few years ago the routes that came from the route generation program had an expiration time. If a flight was delayed or you missed the expiration time when planning the flight, the dispatcher would need to re-build that route as a temporary route before he could amend releases for the flight. Uusally you would get an error message that the route expired but not always. Other times you would know when the fuel burn changed by a lot or the route changed on fusion after amending the release.

A number of dispatchers still use mostly atc pref routes because they had issues like that with using the routes generated by the program.
 

Green12324

Well-Known Member
At my airline the "stored" routes included both static and dynamic routes. Shorter flights would just be static routes (ATC pref and one or two company routes.) Long flights would be static to/from a point (SID/STAR or ATC RQD point) then optimized based on winds.

I would usually start with the most cost effective route, whatever it was, and see if it would work for me. If it didn't I'd overlay all the pre-built routes and see if any worked. If none of them did I'd take the closest one and modify it to what I needed.

I would never trust the software to create a "perfect" route on its own. If you did EWR optimized LAX with no further input it would make up something really goofy, and ATC would just put you back on 101. Opti was better for the middle part of transcons just to catch the best route for wind, especially during take off weight limited scenarios.
 
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