Sunday, March 13, 2016

On any given day.......


In this last century we have gone from virtually zero to several hundred thousand people being high up in the air at any given moment of the day. Astonishing when you think about it. 

Several hundred million people fly above the hard and lumpy part or the world each year.  The air above us is thick with them.  Mind you, the air can get a tad lumpy too at times and always somewhere in the world at any given moment.

You have very likely been one of those passengers in the past few years. Or a family member or a friend has been somewhere by aircraft.

You see them off at the airport and hope to hear from them soon after they land to let you know they have arrived safely.

But do you ever think about 'tracking' them? 

My beloved son went from Oz to the USA a year or two back. I followed him all the way from his plane taxiing out to it landing. I could do it on my computer.

The website, Flightradar24 allows you to see aircraft as they taxi to the runway and journey all the way to its destination.  Pretty well all places have good coverage, and some large airports even have cameras that allow you to see your loved-one's plane touching down!  There are several sites that enable you to access airport cameras.

You can even get good visual access on mobile phones. 

That is astonishing too.

All commercial aircraft carry transponders and most now carry a particular type : automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B). These send data which the site can access and display.

If a family member has need of a medical flight, even by helicopter, you can track then from remote places right to the hospital landing pad.

The site details things like altitude and speed, rate of climb / descent, flt No, callsign, aircraft type etc. All you have to do is mouse-click on an aircraft symbol. You can 'scroll-in' and out to get within a mile or less of the plane (with a landmap beneath to show exactly where it is above). 

And apart from the 'personal' you can also simply see what is happening almost anywhere in the world. For instance I was watching earlier as over 50 aircraft were going around in four seperate stacks over Dubai; and the stream of traffic passing New York, with some 'peeling off' to join a line going into J.F. Kennedy airport.  Needless to say, the traffic into an out of sleepy Tasmania is much lighter although some folk do come especially to sit in the bars of the Tavern.

Hey, it helps to pass the time and it ain't sinful.


You could find it very useful as a teaching aid for your children. Young and old !

Oh, by the way, if you want to know where boats are, try ....

Again zoom in, move the map with a held mouse, click on a symbol. Use the lagend at the side to get details of the craft.   (Something for JH here)



  1. A fascinating website, I had no idea it existed!

    When we flew to Ljubljana last year, the plane (Adria Airways) had a similar graphic showing on a screen above each seat. It showed the progress of our plane and where we were as we progressed on our journey. Something I had not seen before. That and the views through the window made for an enjoyable flight :-)

    1. Good, innit :) Some large planes now have cameras mounted at various places on the outside so that passesngers (and the pilot) can see what is below and ahead and around.

      I can recall the 'first' airport cameras. At a base I was at we could not see the touchdown area of one runway from the tower. So we had a camera mounted on a pole and a monitor in the tower. With a joystick to move it around and zoom. :) (The camera, that is, not the monitor)

  2. Think it might do my head in tracking all those.

    1. That would be a task and a half ! But you could pop indoors and take a sqizz to see what that was that flew over just then. I think the site also has a facility for 'historical' data..... nit too far back I am supposing..... so one can check UFO reports. Hahahahahahah.

      I hope you like the boaty link.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Oops, that was me Amfy( Ubermouth). :)

  4. Why did you delete my last comment, Amfy?(Ubermouth)

    1. I didn't. As it says, it was deleted by the author. I was not sure who or why. Perhaps if you send it again it will show.


Ne meias in stragulo aut pueros circummittam.

Our Bouncer is a gentleman of muscle and guile. His patience has limits. He will check you at the door.

The Tavern gets rowdy visitors from time to time. Some are brain dead and some soul dead. They attack customers and the bar staff and piss on the carpets. Those people will not be allowed in anymore. So... Be Nice..