Creating an airport

pgoelz

New member
OK folks, I have a couple question re: creating an airport from a custom photofield. Please don't direct me to the search or the FAQs. I have looked until my eyes hurt. There is massive information about how to take a panoramic image but precious little about how to then create an airport from that image.

I have created a panoramic image. I did not actually do a full set.... I did a 360 degree set in two swaths, stitched them together and added texture cloned from the actual photograph for the rest of the sky and the ground down to the bottom.

My first question is.... what is the aspect ratio that RF is looking for when it imports a panoramic image? My test image is currently rectangular and 2:1..... ie., it is twice as wide as it is tall. Correct?

My second question is.... if the above is correct, where is the horizon supposed to be in the image? I am assuming at the midpoint of the image. Correct?

Trouble is that when I imported my test image and tried to create an airport from it, I got the upper half of the image and RF replaced the lower half with a default texture. An earlier try with the image at an aspect ratio about 3:1 and the horizon below the center of the image produced a full image but the "ground" was well above the image ground.

I have looked everywhere for some simple guidelines and have drawn a blank. The help is absolutely no help whatsoever and I haven't found anything online either.

Am I missing something obvious?

Paul
 
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one search for me revealed the answer (photo airport)

One guy responded Max size for pano's is 8192x4096... while I have imported 10,000 x 5,000 so I do not know the exact answer to this question.. I reported a failure at a larger size.

your gonna have to do some searching for more answers. It can be smaller too but keep the X to the Y Keep the same aspect ratio.

Horizon is to be at mid-point of the picture... you should set this in the picture editing software before importing the image.

There really is a lot of information on this topic.... please try my search terms. I would suggest only making a couple of edits at a time and exiting... it seems that the airport editor is flaky when many changes are made. I also recommend making intermediate backups of the field.



pgoelz said:
OK folks, I have a couple question re: creating an airport from a custom photofield. Please don't direct me to the search or the FAQs. I have looked until my eyes hurt. There is massive information about how to take a panoramic image but precious little about how to then create an airport from that image.

I have created a panoramic image. I did not actually do a full set.... I did a 360 degree set in two swaths, stitched them together and added texture cloned from the actual photograph for the rest of the sky and the ground down to the bottom.

My first question is.... what is the aspect ratio that RF is looking for when it imports a panoramic image? My test image is currently rectangular and 2:1..... ie., it is twice as wide as it is tall. Correct?

My second question is.... if the above is correct, where is the horizon supposed to be in the image? I am assuming at the midpoint of the image. Correct?

Trouble is that when I imported my test image and tried to create an airport from it, I got the upper half of the image and RF replaced the lower half with a default texture. An earlier try with the image at an aspect ratio about 3:1 and the horizon below the center of the image produced a full image but the "ground" was well above the image ground.

I have looked everywhere for some simple guidelines and have drawn a blank. The help is absolutely no help whatsoever and I haven't found anything online either.

Am I missing something obvious?

Paul
 
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pgoelz

New member
Look, I understand why the "old hands" get tired of answering the same question over and over. But dang it, the answers to my questions are NOT out there easily found. My eyes hurt from searching. Yes, I have found loads about how to make a panorama. Not the problem. The problem is how to get it into RF. And yes, I know how to import it.

OK, let's narrow it down a bit. Just one question, and yes I DID SEARCH.

What is a "sky panorama"? For some reason, now all my panos are being imported into G4.5 as "sky panoramas". It imports the upper half of the image and replaces the bottom half with a default texture. I have tried all sorts of sizes including the example thumbnail someone posted. Same results. Can someone shed some light?

I suppose this could be useful if I knew how to control it... separate panoramas for above and below the horizon?

Paul
 
Sky Panorama???? I don't know where you are getting this term.

We are trying to provide FREE help... there are not a whole lot of people who make airports, so just give us a chance... you only have ONE image per airport. It has to be edited carefully to set the horizon and aspect ratio.

Click on Menus; 'Simulation', 'Import Image', 'Raw Panoramic Image'
Click on Menus; 'Create New Airport'
The airport editor will open...

Then when you create a new airport the imported image will appear in the Properties, Panoramic Image drop down selection box. Once the image is selected, it will appear in the pilot spawn window. Is the horizon centered? If not get it centered and reimport. You can use the manage files menu item to remove images from real flight selection.

Tnorton12000 provided you with links all the important stuff... I provided search terms with a lot of KE forum stuff. This is not a trivial task, and you are going to have to do some experimenting... save as you go along.
 
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pgoelz

New member
Where did I get the term "sky panorama"? Simple. From Realflight G4.5. That is what it said it imported my 2:1 panoramic image as when it finished importing.

I created the 2:1 image (about 8000 X 4000 pixels), then from within RF I selected IMPORT > RAW PHOTOFIELD and it imported it but only the upper half. Yesterday, following the same (simple) steps it said that it had imported a "photofield" as expected, and the image extended from top to bottom as expected. I'm glad you don't understand.... neither do I ;)

I'm using RF G4.5, updated to the latest version.

I have (I think) been doing exactly what has been suggested here. I have created a 2:1 panoramic image (in BMP format if that is important). I have imported it into RF. I have created a new airport and designated the imported image. I was getting pretty close (I had the horizon wrong in the first couple attempts) and when I re-did my image (same size) to put the horizon in the center, RF suddenly started reporting that it imported the image as a "sky panorama", whatever that is.

Perhaps I am operating under an incorrect assumption. The airport creation functionality is available in RF and LOOKS simple enough. I just assumed people knew how to do it. All I thought I was asking was a simple leg up to get over a couple hurdles I have not been able to figure out from web searches, forum searches, FAQs and the essentially non-existant help within RF itself. If no one here has actually done it, I'll back off and either give up for now or plug away on my own. If I ever figure it out I will post a guide here and you can stickie it if you want.

Paul
 

jeffpn

Well-known member
I remember messing around with a simple pano a while ago. I had the aspect ratio wrong; not enough sky and not enough ground. Things looked weird until I added sky to the top, and ground to the bottom to simulate the streaight up to straight down views. At the simplest, that's all that's required. You then have to add invisible objects to crash into. Line the base of the invisible object with the base of the obstacle in the picture. There are a myriad of objects to choose from, or you can make your own. i have never read about a sky panorama here before.
 

pgoelz

New member
For some totally unknown reason, it suddenly "just worked". On a whim, I opened the custom airport I created with the "sky panorama" that had been displaying with the bottom half (below the horizon) missing. Not sure why, but now it is displaying correctly. I messed around with the coordinates and by trial and error got north where it belonged. It was not an obvious setting.... the start and end of my panorama was rotated 90 degrees east of north but the required setting was around 125 degrees.... not an even 90 degrees.

So for whatever reason, it is magically working as expected. Not sure what all the "sky panorama" and messed up perspective was all about. I think it is a legitimate bug. A little documentation would be a VERY good thing.

Now on to figure out how to add invisible crashable objects. I can add them but I'll be hanged if I can figure out how to hide them. I'll do more searches.....

Paul
 

jeffpn

Well-known member
I'm not at my computer, but I believe there's an option about rendering invisible. That's what depth buffers are. You'll find it in the editor. I'm not real experienced in it, but I messed around with it once.
 

pgoelz

New member
Thanks, I just figured it out.

Here is my project so far, in case anyone is interested. Remember, it was not a full panoramic set of photos. I substituted a colored background for the missing ground and sky. Now that I know it can work sometimes, I'll shoot a full set of photos when I have the energy ;) I can fake the missing sky, but I do need the ground.

Paul
 

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jeffpn

Well-known member
That pano I mentioned earlier looked like it had little sod squares arranged in a circle where the camera was (straight down) after I got done adding grass.
 
I have created 3 airports.... and it works for me. I read all the stuff that was available and followed everyone else... so while not everyone makes their local field, it is not that difficult.


pgoelz said:
Perhaps I am operating under an incorrect assumption. The airport creation functionality is available in RF and LOOKS simple enough. I just assumed people knew how to do it. All I thought I was asking was a simple leg up to get over a couple hurdles I have not been able to figure out from web searches, forum searches, FAQs and the essentially non-existant help within RF itself. If no one here has actually done it, I'll back off and either give up for now or plug away on my own. If I ever figure it out I will post a guide here and you can stickie it if you want.

Paul
 

pgoelz

New member
OK, I don't know what all the fuss was about yesterday. Today I created a photofield of the heli practice area at our local club field (Skymasters in Lake Orion, MI) and it worked first time out of the box, no issues at all. After I put the photofield together and imported it to the simulator, all I had to do was orient it correctly. Yesterday, doing exactly the same thing, I had all sorts of weird issues. Blame me if you like, but it did what it did.

I am still not exactly sure how the coordinate system works. It seems as though north is up, but when I rotate the pilot spawn, nothing seems to happen. Does that perhaps control the default point of view when the sim opens? Nothing on the pilot spawn preview changes.

I'm not entirely happy with the photofield..... I shot the photos at about 10:00AM and the default view from the pilot position is west. That puts the sun over your left shoulder and makes the foilage at the south end of the area very dark with contrasty shadows. I may process it a bit to lighten the shadows and/or change the sun position to something unnatural, like northeast to make the heli better lit. But as it is, it is startlingly realistic, if a little harder to fly.

I'll upload it to the swap pages in a couple days when I am really happy with it.

EDIT...... here it is:

https://forums.realflight.com/index.php?resources/10892

Paul
 
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OK folks, I have a couple question re: creating an airport from a custom photofield. Please don't direct me to the search or the FAQs. I have looked until my eyes hurt. There is massive information about how to take a panoramic image but precious little about how to then create an airport from that image.

I have created a panoramic image. I did not actually do a full set.... I did a 360 degree set in two swaths, stitched them together and added texture cloned from the actual photograph for the rest of the sky and the ground down to the bottom.

My first question is.... what is the aspect ratio that RF is looking for when it imports a panoramic image? My test image is currently rectangular and 2:1..... ie., it is twice as wide as it is tall. Correct?

My second question is.... if the above is correct, where is the horizon supposed to be in the image? I am assuming at the midpoint of the image. Correct?

Trouble is that when I imported my test image and tried to create an airport from it, I got the upper half of the image and RF replaced the lower half with a default texture. An earlier try with the image at an aspect ratio about 3:1 and the horizon below the center of the image produced a full image but the "ground" was well above the image ground.

I have looked everywhere for some simple guidelines and have drawn a blank. The help is absolutely no help whatsoever and I haven't found anything online either.

Am I missing something obvious?

Paul
I am new to creating new airports and found the same top half image issue. I am using Real Flight 8.

If Airport Properties window \ Render Terrain Height is set to "Yes", only the top half of a pano image is displayed on Pilot Spawn window.
Set Render Terrain Height to "No", and bottom half of image should appear.

Try this:
- Create new airport; 4 windows should appear: Folder Listing, Object Palette, Properties, Pilot Spawn
-- In Properties window list, Render Terrain Height should default to "Yes". Pilot Spawn window should show a split view- blue sky and green terrain.
--- Import your pano image. Pilot spawn window will probably only show the top half of your pano image.
----- Set Render Terrain Height to "No". Pilot Spawn window should now show the entire image top & bottom.

Example:
Import swap file of the Apollo XI RC flying field in Van Nuys CA (basin pano).
Do steps above and the entire image is displayed.
I am still trying to figure the "create new airport" steps out myself, but these steps worked for me; so far.
I am using Real Flight 8, so these steps may not work with newer Real Flight versions.
Good Luck
 
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