PocketPC's are produced in large quantities and therefore quite
affordable. If such HW and SW would have to be developed and produced
just for the Soaring community we would look at 5-digit $ prices per
This infrastructure and the demand of many our customers wanting to
use StrePla on their PocketPC in-flight was motivation for
us to develop pocket*StrePla.
Our #1 goal is and always has been to provide the soaring pilot with
an easy to use tool in his/her cockpit which doesn't distract from
flying the aircraft and observing the airspace. It should provide
supporting navigational information like reachable airfields and
avoiding airspace. In addition it should provide for the first time
in-flight information on optimizing a flight for the OLC (Online
Contest) and national decentralized competitions like they are run for
example in Germany with the DMSt. So far there hasn't been any SW which
assists the pilot in flying a "free" FAI Triangle. At the same
time there has not been an Odometer which shows the kilometres flown for
the OLC during flight. Free flights of 498 km or 997 km which were
planned to have been 500 or 1000 km should not be a problem any more
using pocket*StrePla. And last but not least pocket*StrePla
should communicate easily and extend the functionality of StrePla
pocket*StrePla is using the same maps which are used by StrePla
as well. This has the advantage that StrePla users have to
buy the maps just once and can use them with both SW packages.
It is better for planning a flight to use the vector maps(DCW) for
the ability of having a good overview and selectable depth of details.
There is an advantage of using raster maps(ICAO, Jeppesen) for moving
map SW. In StrePla you can use either of them. The user
can select a rectangular area in StrePla and directly
export this map section into pocket*StrePla. It is as easy
as that. It is with the same ease how tasks and turnpoints can be
transferred between StrePla4 and pocket*StrePla.
The StrePla team has achieved very efficient memory use
in pocket*StrePla which allows to store large areas of
maps in PocketPC's without the need for a memory extension.
There are seven zoom levels for the maps in pocket*StrePla
and the map sections can be moved with the touch of your finger. In case
you moved your glider symbol (your current position marker) out of sight
it only needs a "click" with your finger in the middle of the
keyboard to re-centre the position marker in the centre of the display.
The pilot therefore can concentrate at all times on the important tasks
of flying the aircraft and watching the airspace. In order to see the
most possible amount of "map area ahead" the position marker
can be fixed at any part of the map. Or activate the auto modus which
fixes the map position and re-centres automatically once the position
marker reaches the border of the map area.
Arrival height of the reachable airfields
Without having to change the display page the pilot can see the
arrival height for the surrounding airfields. pocket*StrePla
is using an easy to recognize "traffic-light" modus for this
function. If you can see the airfield name and (adjustable) arrival
height in green - then you will arrive at the airfield at or above the
chosen safety altitude. If you see it in yellow - then you will arrive
at the airfield between 0 and the safety height. And red of course tells
you that you better find a thermal or an alternate landing field. These
calculations are based on the current position, the current wind
direction and strength and your chosen glider parameters.
The StrePla team has chosen new methods to solve these
tasks. In this situation, it is most important which airfields can be
reached rather than how fast they can be reached. Therefore pocket*StrePla
is calculating and adjusting to the optimum Mac Cready setting and takes
into account if you are flying into or with the wind. The altitude is
taken from the GPS if your GPS is not serviceing the altitude. As this altitude is not very accurate it is adjusted
to the airfield elevation before take off to achieve best accuracy
FAI Triangle information
So far there was no information available in the cockpit if you are
still within the limits of a free FAI Triangle. The pilot was depended
on guesswork or difficult calculations, which were not easy to do while
in the air. pocket*StrePla for the first time is showing
you the FAI triangle areas during the flight. This can be very important
in some mountainous areas were very flat FAI Triangles are flown
After a flight of minimum 20 km into one direction you will see the
possible FAI triangle areas which fits this leg as a grey sickle shaped
area. In the FAI infobox you can see how large the FAI triangle would be
assuming you "close" the flight and land back home. In case
the pilot decides to extend his flight on the last leg, then pocket*StrePla
shows him a second FAI area which helps him optimize the flight into a FAI triangle with start on the leg. And even with these complex
calculations there is no need for the pilot to "operate" pocket*StrePla.
Keep your hands on the controls and your eyes on the airspace.
The OLC infobox shows the current result of optimization for the
Online Contest (www.onlinecontest.org) of the flight. Therefore the
pilot at any times has the information on OLC-Optimization of up to 6
legs and knows the score for his flight.
New as well is that the barogram of the flight can be shown during the
flight. This allows to set the exact times for the start of the flight to
ensure correct optimization results.
Availability and Updates
pocket*StrePla Version 1.04 is now
available. There are still many
additional functions which we will introduce in future versions. For
this first version we have concentrated to offer the pilot a powerful
tool to fly in the OLC and national decentralized competitions like the
DMSt. For pilots flying central competitions there are some functions
like calculating AAT (Assigned Area Task) which are not yet implemented
All customers which buy pocket*StrePla will receive a free upgrade period of
one year after sales. Updates will be available as downloads from our Website.