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Naïve question?

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  • Naïve question?

    Hi all,

    this afternoon I compared my Flightradar view with Flightaware skyview.

    I do not understand why I do not see all the planes e.g in the Dusseldorf area. It looks like I can "see: that area, when I look at the screenshot from the Flightware sky view.

    I added the two screenshots. Perhaps a naïve or even stupid question but I hope there is someone how is willing to explain this.

    Screenshot 2019-08-04 at 16.57.40.jpg. Screenshot 2019-08-04 at 16.57.51.jpg

  • #2
    Your FlightAware Skyview will display all your locally tracked flights including any which FlightAware has plotted using MLAT.

    FR24 will block or not display some flights, such as business and most military.

    Check your Skyview map to see if those missing from FR24 are MLAT plots, business or military?

    Radarspotting since 2005


    • #3
      What I meant is that I do see only a few planes around Düsseldorf. It's an airport, so if I see a few, what would be the reason I cannot see the others. Checked it again, it are commercial flights. No military or so. Hope I made myself clearer


      • #4
        Check if you have any filters set?

        Radarspotting since 2005


        • #5
          I am not aware of any filters I could have set.
          Raspberry Pi 3B+
          Rtl-SDR dongle
          This antenna, hanging outside by balcony, not 100% "free"
          Installed Flightradar, Flightaware and Planfinder


          • #6
            Check out this thread:

            You need a direct line of sight to a plane.

            Seeing airplanes in a particular direction at 40 000 ft at a certain distance is not the same as seeing them at 20 000 ft.
            You range will be much much lower for planes that fly lower.


            • #7
              The greater the distance from your receiver, the higher the minimum altitude is on which you can see planes in that area.


              • #8
                I checked the site and added a screenshot.

                I know the greater the distance is the less I can see, but seeing my graph I have a feeling I should be able to see somewhat more. Düsseldorf is around 100NM
                Screenshot 2019-08-04 at 20.40.25.jpg


                • #9
                  What are you viewing for FR24?

                  Is it the website? That's what it appears from your screen capture.

                  In which case, assuming no filters set, you're seeing traffic from the FR24 server. You're implying your locally tracked flights, as displayed on FlightAware's Skyview, shows more planes than the FR24 website. Or am I missing something?


                  Radarspotting since 2005


                  • #10
                    Ah. I think I now understand what you're asking.

                    "Why do I not see traffic on Skyview in the Dusseldorf area?"

                    It depends on your antenna and it's location? And possible obstacles between it and aircraft over Dusseldorf, espcially for ones at lower altitude.


                    Radarspotting since 2005


                    • #11
                      So the terrain is not the problem, but are there houses or trees in the way?
                      The website only knows about hills.

                      (is your balcony really 14 m high? If it is i would expect neighbouring houses to be just as high?)

                      Direct line of sight means direct line of sight.

                      If you had a better view towards Duesseldorf, you would probably also see planes higher up to further distances in that direction.
                      Last edited by wiedehopf; 2019-08-04, 19:40.


                      • #12
                        Friend of mine does have the same problem.
                        He's located in Vienna, not far away from VIE airport. However he's not able to see any aircrafts below a certain level of altitude due to his bad environment. His range should be towards Budapest, but it's simply not working.

                        Same for me, i am located west of Frankfurt (one of the busiest airports as you know) and i cannot see aircrafts approaching FRA from the east. Only if they are coming from west, they pass my environment and i can register them.

                        Believe it or not, the tracking is very fragile based on the environment, the devices, the setup and finally on the max range based on your geographic location.
                        Question: Are you feeding Radarbox or Opensky-Network as well?

                        They have some nice areal views which they create based on the data you send.
                        It doesn't mean that this is your range, but it's the result from aircraft positions your receiver caught.

                        Last edited by magnum; 2019-08-05, 05:24.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by magnum View Post

                          Question: Are you feeding Radarbox or Opensky-Network as well?

                          They have some nice areal views which they create based on the data you send.
                          How about your FR24 Polar Plot and Skyview Coverage Graph?

                          Do these show less coverage towards Dusseldorf?

                          My location has rising ground to the west and this blocks traffic from that area, as you can see in the attached.



                          Radarspotting since 2005


                          • #14
                            Plane finder has a nice, zoomable, rotatable 3D visualisation: pfc.png

                            You get trails if you leave the Aircraft mode running: pfca.png
                            Last edited by elljay; 2019-08-05, 08:20.


                            • #15
                              Good morning all,

                              thank you for the help and the explanations.

                              I do not feed to the OpenSky network yet. Will search for their script and install it. Same for Radarbox, though I read some "not so good" reviews in this forum about them.

                              Screenshot 2019-08-05 at 10.52.04.png
                              Polar Plot screenshot from this morning in FR24

                              My view to the S and E is not obstructed. In the north direction, the reception is bad, but that is because of the way I had to mount my antenna. I added a screenshot form planefinder as well

                              Since I used my "new" antenna the reception is better than before. ( The jetvison small antenna)
                              Attached Files
                              Last edited by Dutchyb; 2019-08-05, 09:03.