Frequently Asked Questions
- Where can I obtain the latest version of this FAQ?
- What is FalconView®?
- What is PFPS?
- What is XPlan?
- What is AFMSS?
- What is JMPS?
- What is SkyView?
- What is FalconLite? (FalconView for NIMA)?
- Who uses FalconView?
- Who developed FalconView?
- What versions of FalconView are available?
- How do I obtain a release copy of FalconView and other related software?
- Can I get a beta version of FalconView?
- Where can I download FalconView?
- How much does FalconView cost?
- How do I get a new feature incorporated into FalconView?
- How do I request changes and additions to the government version of …
- How do I contact the PFPS Program Office?
- How do I acquire map and imagery data for FalconView?
- Whom should I contact for technical support?
- How can I get more map data?
- What does LIMITED DISTRIBUTION mean?
- How do I get FalconView graphics into another application?
- FalconView doesn’t appear to be running correctly. How can I determine …
- I am having problems with FalconView, and it won't start.
- FalconView doesn’t appear to be printing correctly. What might be wrong?
- Where can I obtain training on how to use FalconView?
- How do I import a list of point data into the FalconView Points overlay?
- How do I import DAFIF from the Web?
- How do I make my own map-data CD?
- As a developer, how do I integrate FalconView with my own software?
- Where can I get the PFPS and FalconView SDKs?
- Why do I have trouble using FalconView 3.x As a non-Administrator?
- What are the FalconView system requirements?
- New Features
- FalconView 4.2.1 New Features
- FalconView 4.2.0 New Features
- FalconView 4.1.0 New Features
- FalconView 4.0.1 New Features
- FalconView 3.3.1 New Features
- FalconView 3.3.0 New Features
- FalconView 3.2.0 New Features
- FalconView 3.1.2 New Features
- FalconView 3.1.0 New Features
U.S. Government Availability
- I am in the Air Force. How do I obtain FalconView?
- I am a USSOCOM (AFSOC or USASOC) user. How do I obtain FalconView?
- I am a U.S. Army user. How do I obtain FalconView?
- I am a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) user. How do I obtain …
- I am a U.S. Navy user. How do I obtain FalconView?
- How do I obtain the version of FalconView that NGA distributes?
- I don’t fall into any of these categories. How do I obtain FalconView?
- Foreign Military and International Sales
- Commercial Sales
- General Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I obtain the latest version of this FAQ?
The latest version of this FAQ can be obtained at http://www.falconview.org.
What is FalconView®?
FalconView is a Microsoft Windows® based mapping application that displays various types of maps and geographically referenced overlays. Many map types are supported, but the primary ones of interest to most users are aeronautical charts, satellite images, and elevation maps. FalconView also supports a large number of overlay types that can be displayed and printed over any map background. The current overlay set is oriented toward mission planning and is targeted toward aviators and aviation support personnel. Additionally, FalconView is used as an onboard moving-map display on several airborne platforms. FalconView is an integral part of the Portable Flight Planning Software (PFPS), Execution Planning Software (XPlan), and various FalconView components are also being used by the Joint Mission Planning System (JMPS) environment.
What is PFPS?
PFPS is an integrated suite of PC-based mission planning tools using a common graphical user interface. PFPS is installable on any Windows® 7 desktop or portable computer. PFPS 4.2.1 and later can be installed on either 32-bit or 64-bit versions of Windows. It displays standard digital maps and produces user-customizable kneeboard cards, combat mission folders, and data transfers to compatible digital transfer devices. The PFPS software uses an implementation of the client-server data model to provide a shared view of the mission route to software components. The PFPS Route Server synchronizes the different PFPS components so that changes made to the route by one PFPS application are passed to all other components. This allows the operator to perform multiple operations on the same routes without reentering data.
The PFPS software suite includes FalconView, Combat Flight Planning Software (CFPS), Combat Weapon Delivery Software (CWDS), Combat Air Drop Planning Software (CAPS), and several other software packages built by different software contractors. More information on PFPS can be found on Mission Planning Central at mpc.mission-planning.org.
What is XPlan?
XPlan is the next generation of mission planning software. The XPlan suite of applications will be used to support a broad range of mission needs and operational environments. Mission planning is used throughout the armed forces, including the Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, Special Operations Command (SOCOM), and Coast Guard. XPlan mission planning software will provide robust, portable mission planning capabilities for flight, ground, and maritime operations.
What is AFMSS?
The Air Force Mission Support System (AFMSS) is a family of automated mission-planning tools. The main products comprising AFMSS are the Mission Planning System (MPS), the Portable Flight Planning Software (PFPS) core, and the next generation Joint Mission Planning System (JMPS). The MPS is a UNIX-based system while the PFPS and JMPS are PC/Windows®-based. These products encompass incremental software and hardware development in an open-system architecture with planned periodic software releases.
What is JMPS?
The Joint Mission Planning System (JMPS) has been mandated to be the next generation mission planner. The Air Force ESC/AC and the Navy PMA-281 have been directed to migrate AFMSS/MPS, PFPS, and TAMPS to JMPS as part of the Global Command and Control System (GCCS). The system has fielded for most Navy Aircraft and some Air Force Aircraft.
JMPS uses the MapRenderingEngine from FalconView to display the background maps similar to the display in FalconView. Other components from FalconView and PFPS have been incorporated into JMPS by re-writing the components to conform to the JMPS interface standards. Most components written for FalconView will not work with JMPS and Most components written for JMPS will not work with FalconView.
What is SkyView?
SkyView™ is an add-on application for FalconView 3.1.2 or higher that provides a 3D perspective view of an area, including any overlays opened in FalconView. SkyView operates on most Windows® 2000 and XP platforms but performs best on systems with a joystick and 3D graphics acceleration. Acceptable performance is achieved through most low-end, 3D graphics cards built in 1999 or later. For a complete list of cards that work well with SkyView, see the SkyView readme.txt file and the online help that are installed with the software.
What is FalconLite? (FalconView for NIMA)?
A special version of FalconView was developed for use by Government personnel who fall outside of the normal, mission-planning distribution chain. It is severely out of date and should generally be replaced by TalonView which was recently release by NGA and includes the features of FalconView 4.1.1. See the Availability section for ordering instructions for TalonView.
Who uses FalconView?
FalconView is primarily used by a large portion of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) aviation community as well as other federal agencies such as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, the U.S. Department Of Homeland Security, and the Federal Aviation Administration. Several Allied nations are also using a special version of FalconView that has been approved for export. FalconView has approximately 40,000 users.
Who developed FalconView?
FalconView was developed by researchers at the Georgia Tech Research Institute located on the Georgia Tech campus in Atlanta, Georgia. The majority of FalconView development was accomplished under multiple contracts with various DoD agencies. You can contact the FalconView development team directly by sending e-mail to falconview (at) gtri (dot) gatech (dot) edu.
What versions of FalconView are available?
The following versions are officially certified and fielded for mission-planning use:
- 4.1.1 (USSOCOM)
- 4.0.2 (Army)
- 3.3.1 Service Patch 5 (Air Force, Navy)
4.0.1 and 4.0.2 differ only in the display of a few tactical-graphic symbols.
4.1.1 Completed Government testing in January 2009 and is currently fielding to USSOCOM users. The Army expects it in the field by 4Q 2009.
The Georgia Tech development team is finishing up work on version 4.2.2 for PFPS and version 5.1.1 for XPlan, a bug-fix release of 5.1.0. GTRI has also started the development of FalconView 5.2.0 which includes an integrated 3D renderer.
How do I obtain a release copy of FalconView and other related software?
FalconView has a unique distribution mechanism for each category of user that spans multiple MAJCOMs and other Government agencies. In order to obtain a copy of FalconView, you need to know which category qualifies you. Refer to the "Availability" section for your particular category.
Can I get a beta version of FalconView?
All beta copies must be approved by the appropriate program office. Distribution of Beta copies is done through the Eglin AFB Mission Planning web site. To get an account go to http://www.eglin.af.mil/mission-planning. You need to be registered at the "Developer" or "Tester" level. After obtaining approval, you will get a login and password to the secure site. There you can download the most recent beta copies.
The evaluation software is not approved for safety-of-flight issues and shall not be used as the primary tool for mission planning.
All alpha and beta users have an obligation to inform us of problems they encounter with the software. Do not assume that someone else has told us about a problem. We would rather hear about it twice than release software with an unknown bug.
Where can I download FalconView?
This website, http://www.falconview.org, contains a link to download the Open Source version of FalconView which is released under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public License ( LGPL). The DoD version can be obtained from DoD networks (See Government Availability below).
How much does FalconView cost?
FalconView is available at no cost to U.S. DoD entities and U.S. Government Agencies. The Open Source Version is also free under the terms of the LGPL. For information on foreign and domestic commercial sales of the ITAR controlled version of FalconView, see the "Availability" section.
How do I get a new feature incorporated into FalconView?
The FalconView development team adds features to the standard mission planning release of FalconView based on a combined, prioritized, requirements list. This list is developed by the PFPS Program Office with inputs from all the MAJCOMs. Your voice in this process is your user representative.
The Open source version can be updated with features written by either Georgia Tech or other third parties by way of a software contribution. Many features can be added through the standard FalconView Plug-in interfaces which use Microsoft COM to expose the functionality of FalconView. Using the PLUG-IN interfaces is an easy way for third parties to enhance FalconView without requiring modifications to the core functionality. We are eager to expand the functionality of FalconView and soon hope to host a collection of plug-in tools.
How do I request changes and additions to the government version of FalconView?
Write your ideas on a short "Baseline Change Request" form available from the Mission Planning System Support Facility at Hill AFB.
The FalconView team would also like to hear your comments directly. The FalconView team always welcomes feedback and is glad to answer questions. We also would enjoy hearing any interesting anecdotes about how you have used FalconView or how it has helped you. Contact the FalconView Program Management Office at the Georgia Tech Research Institute:
FalconView Program Management Office
Georgia Tech Research Institute
250 14th St. NW
falconview (at) gtri (dot) gatech (dot) edu
How do I contact the PFPS Program Office?
FalconView is jointly developed under multiple separate contracts, but general program management is run through the Air Force Mission Planning Office:
Mrs. Toni Dineen
email: toni (dot) dineen (dot) ct (at) eglin (dot) af (dot) mil
SOF-specific requirements are handled by the SOF mission-planning office at Ft Eustis:
SOF Mission Planning Office
commercial: 757-878-1050 x273
DSN: 826-1050 x273
Bryant.Bullock (at) us (dot) army (mil) mil
Army-specific requirements are handled by the Army Aviation Mission Planning System (AMPS) Program Office:
amps (at) peoavn (dot) redstone (dot) army (dot) mil
How do I acquire map and imagery data for FalconView?
Although the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) produces the majority of data for FalconView users, the data is normally acquired from the Defense Logistics Agency according to applicable military service instructions. For example, Air Force users can find these procedures in AFI 14-205. Current technology allows users to acquire data locally on AF bases via the AF Geospatial Product Libraries (AF GPL). For more information on AF GPL, contact AF/XOIRY.
NGA also provides customer support for their data and services. Applicable points of contact can be found on their web sites: https://www.geointel.nga.mil/ or http://www.nga.smil.mil/ or http://www.nga.ic.gov/
Whom should I contact for technical support?
Mission Planning System Support Facility (MPSSF)
Hill AFB, UT
commercial: 1-800-SSF-SSFX (1-800-773-7739)
e-mail: hill (dot) mpssfa (at) hill (dot) af (dot) mil
Army Aviation Mission Planning System (AMPS) Program Office
https://mpc.mission-planning.org/sites/spt/army/amps/default.aspx (SSR locator, updates, etc.)
or Help Desk (Judy Lane)
email: Judith (dot) lane (at) us (dot) army (dot) mil
Comm: 1-800-773-7739, Option 7
DSN: 777-6538, Option 7
Navy Mission Planning Systems Support
SpaWarSysCen San Diego Det. Philadelphia
700 Robbins Ave. Building 2B
Philadelphia, PA 19111
commercial: 888-TAMPS4U (888-826-7748)
e-mail: n-pfps (at) spawar (dot) navy (dot) mil
Contact your local Contractor Logistic Support representative.
You can also check the Technical Support tab available from the Help > About FalconView menu option for the appropriate technical support point of contact.
How can I get more map data?
Map data supplied by NGA is designated LIMITED DISTRIBUTION.
Members of the U.S. Armed Forces should order NGA products through Defense Supply Center Richmond:
Defense Supply Center Richmond
8000 Jefferson Davis Highway
Richmond, VA 23297-5100
NGA has a customer General Help Desk at the following address:
NGA General Help Desk
Mail Stop L-89
3838 Vogel Rd.
e-mail: mailto:chdesk (at) nga (dot) mil
The following are the NGA Customer Support Teams:
What does LIMITED DISTRIBUTION mean?
Condensed from an article by Margaret Pittman, Office of General Counsel of NGA
NGA products marked with the Limited Distribution, or LimDis, caveat are unclassified. However, even with this classification marking, LimDis products cannot be released or disseminated to the public, and only under certain circumstances can LimDis products be released outside the Department of Defense (DoD). Many find this concept hopelessly confusing. This article attempts to clarify the rules that apply to NGA's LimDis marking.
Classified vs. LimDis A common question asked is, "If a product is so important that we do not want it disseminated or released to the public, why isn't the product classified?" A classified product can be handled and used only by those with the appropriate clearance. Yet many of our military customers do not have the clearances that would permit them to handle classified material, or they are in situations where storing classified material would be problematic. NGA marks these products LimDis to provide our customers with access to what they need to accomplish their mission.
LimDis and Public Access The LimDis marking, while providing access to uncleared military personnel, also permits NGA to withhold these same products from public release or dissemination. Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a government agency must make information available to the public unless that information falls under one or more of the nine FOIA exemptions. One of those nine exemptions states that an agency can withhold information if it falls under some statutory protection. 10 U.S.C. 455 is the vehicle that is used by NGA to protect LimDis information and withhold it from public release or dissemination. Without this protection, LimDis information would be available to any member of the public who asked for it, including someone whose interests may be hostile to the United States.
Non DoD Access to LimDis Materials Under certain circumstances LimDis material can be shared with non-DoD personnel. Who we share the material with depends on the reason we labeled the product LimDis in the first place. There are three reasons NGA marks products LimDis:
1) Data contained in the product was obtained through either an international or other agreement that prevents or limits public release or dissemination of the product.
2) Data in the product might reveal the types of sources, methods or capabilities that were used to obtain the data.
3) Data in the product might reveal military or intelligence operations or plans.
Within certain parameters, NGA can share data LimDis data with our military customers, certain international partners, certain non-DoD Federal Agencies and DoD contractors as Government Furnished Information (GFI) pursuant to a DoD contract.
Contractors There are a number of misconceptions about how DoD contractors can use NGA LimDis data. NGA shares certain LimDis data with contractors, but that arrangement is governed by the terms of the contract and various Federal regulations. When the contract is completed, the data must be returned to NGA or destroyed.
DoD contractors cannot use NGA LimDis data to create their own products, nor can they use the data to demonstrate their products or capabilities to non-DoD customers, nor can they use the data to "drum up business". NGA's procurement contracts include MC&G data clauses that clearly spell out these restrictions. Contracting officers and contract technical representatives do not have authority to permit contractors to use LimDis products for such purposes.
Contractors who use LimDis data to drum up business with potential customers, or otherwise misuse GFI, are breaching their DoD contract. These contractors are violating the law and can be subject to severe legal penalties.
The Bottom Line Needless to say, the question of how to handle LimDis products can become very complicated very quickly. With all the different factors involved to consider, the question of sharing or disseminating LimDis data is most often determined on a case-by-case basis. Any questions regarding the releasability or sharing of LimDis should always be cleared through NGA's International and Policy Office (NP). For more information, please contact NGA's Imagery and Geospatial Policy Division (NPP):
commercial: (301) 227-7485/7946/7954 DSN: 287-7485/7946/7954
Office of General Counsel (GC): (301) 227-2268
How do I get FalconView graphics into another application?
If you want to paste the entire FalconView window (that is, include the frame, menus, etc.), use ALT+PrintScreen?. Put the FalconView window in the foreground and then press ALT+PrintScreen?. This copies the entire FalconView window to the Clipboard. You should then be able to go to the application of interest and paste the graphic. For example, in Word you would select Edit > Paste.
If you want to paste only the map portion of FalconView, use the Edit > Copy Map menu option in FalconView. Put the FalconView window in the foreground and then select Edit > Copy Map. This copies the FalconView map to the Clipboard. You should then be able to go to the application of interest and paste the graphic. For example, in Word you would select Edit > Paste.
FalconView doesn’t appear to be running correctly. How can I determine what's wrong?
Check to see if there is an error log. When FalconView detects an error, it writes a message to a file referred to as the error log. The file name is "err_log.txt". A link to the error log should be located in the same directory as the FalconView executable (e.g., c:\program files\pfps\falcon). This file exists mainly to help the FalconView developers determine the cause of any problems, but it may help you to determine the problem. The error log can be viewed by double clicking on the "err_log.txt" file in the Windows Explorer. Note that when an error log is created, the previous error log (if any) is renamed to "err_bak.txt." Thus the previous error log is preserved.
If the problem appears to be a data problem (for example, if the map coverage appears to be out-of-sync with the data on your system), try selecting Tools > Data Check.
I am having problems with FalconView, and it won't start.
FalconView doesn’t appear to be printing correctly. What might be wrong?
If you have printing problems, you should explore the following possibilities:
Printer driver version: Perhaps the most common source of printer problems is having an incorrect printer driver or an old version of the correct printer driver. Try to locate the latest version of the driver for your printer by contacting the printer manufacturer or by looking on the World Wide Web. Install it and see if the problems persist.
Printer driver settings: Printer driver settings can greatly affect the output quality. Read the section on printer driver settings in the FalconView online help and check your driver settings.
Printer memory: Printer memory is an issue for laser printers but is not really significant for ink-jet printers. Printing map data (especially printing to scale) requires using a large amount of data. Unless your laser printer has sufficient memory, FalconView may not be able to print correctly. Of course, the larger the paper size, the more data (and thus the more memory) is required. You can often see how much memory your printer has by causing it to print a test page (see your owner’s manual). Note that printing at higher resolutions generally requires more memory than printing at lower resolutions. If your printer is low on memory, you may be able to print at lower resolutions if you are unable to print at correctly at higher resolutions.
Where can I obtain training on how to use FalconView?
GTRI, in partnership with Georgia Tech Distance Learning and Professional Education (DLPE), is initiating a FalconView Developer Certificate Program to be conducted on the Georgia Tech campus. Customized on-site training is also available for users or developers of FalconView.
The NGA College also teaches a class on using Geospatial data which uses FalconView as the primary viewing tool. Contact the NGA General Help Desk for more information:
NGA General Help Desk
Mail Stop L-89
3838 Vogel Rd.
GIST (at) nga (dot) mil
How do I import a list of point data into the FalconView Points overlay?
Col. Paul "Pablo" Hastert created a program which makes it easy to read tables of data into FalconView as points or drawings. The program is called "Excel2FV" and ships as an "Additional Program" on the PFPS 3.3.1 CD. Updated versions can obtain a copy from his web site at http://www.mission-planning.com.
The program can do many other often-requested tasks:
- Convert C2PC "*.mgc" files to drawings.
- Convert C2PC threat.mdb files to FalconView threat files.
- Merge two FalconView drawing files.
FalconView 4.0, incorporated much of the import functionality into the main FalconView executable (fvw.exe). It is accessed in the "tabular editor" window.
How do I import DAFIF from the Web?
Note: As of October 2006, DAFIF data is only download-able by US government users. The facilities for view this data are not included in the Open Source version. DoD users with a valid CAC card can download the data from NGA or download the data from https://mpc.mission-planning.org/.
1) In order to import DAFIF from the Web, you will need the following directory structure from an Edition 8 DAFIF CD (you may have to download the entire image to get all the files; NGA has a specialized subset ZIP file on their website).
From the root of the DAFIF CD, copy the following:
ALMANAC.GPS (a file)
VERSION (a file)
DAFIF (a folder - need the entire contents)
Make sure the directory structure is kept as listed above. For example, using "c:\" we would have:
c:\Almanac.gps (a file)
c:\Version (a file)
c:\Dafif (a folder)
2) Start FalconView and bring up the DAFIF importer.
3) From the first screen of the importer, use the Browse button to select the path where the files were placed in Step 1. For our example, this would be "C:\".
4) From here the import proceeds normally.
The DAFIF Data from NGA is only available to Authenticated DoD users (CAC Card). It can no longer be downloaded by the public.
How do I make my own map-data CD?
1) Create a new, empty directory in which you wish to copy the data. Note that you must have full read-write permissions for the new directory.
2) Run FalconView, and go to the Map Data Manager.
3) Click the Paths tab.
4) Click the Add button, select the new, empty directory, and then click OK. Answer Yes to the warning dialog that appears asking if you want to add a path that contains no map data.
5) Click the Change button to make the new, empty directory your target data path. Wait for FalconView to generate coverage for the path.
6) Click the Multiple tab.
7) Select the map data you wish to copy to the new directory (target path).
8) Press the Copy button. Wait for FalconView to copy the desired data to the new directory, create the expected directory structure, and generate coverage.
9) Burn the map data CD:
- Run the CD-burning program.
- Select the directories to burn.
Note: Do not burn the directory you selected in which to copy the data. Also, do not copy the covdata directory or the BCP data because map inconsistencies may occur. Copy only the map subdirectories. For example, say you had FalconView copy the data to "Map Data." You would not burn this directory onto the CD, but the subdirectories of this directory (tiros2, rpf, dted, etc.) so the CD directory should look like the following:
where "d" is the CD-ROM.
- Burn the CD
10) This CD will now behave similarly to an NGA-generated CD when placed in another machine. Ensure that the Map Data Manager indicates the CD-ROM is online and that polling is enabled. You can check the status with the Paths tab. Note that FalconView only supports one map-data path at a time on a CD-ROM drive.
As a developer, how do I integrate FalconView with my own software?
The FalconView GetTheSdk Software Development Kit? (SDK) provides developers with important information about the interface to key functional aspects of FalconView. The information takes the form of interface control documents (ICDs), sample code, and miscellaneous documents. The entire SDK can be sent through e-mail in a single compressed file.
- Digital Aeronautical Flight Information File (DAFIF)
- Drawing File Format
- Electronic Chart Update Manual (ECHUM)
- External Application Usage (FalconView version 3.1.2 and higher)
- Manual Chart Update Manual (CHUM)
- Map Server
- Point Export (FalconView version 3.2.0 and higher)
- Shape File Preferences
- Threat Information File Format
- GPS Feed Component
- Layer Editor (Visual Basic and C++)
- Map Server client
- Overlay Options Property Page
- Tactical Graphics
- SkyView ICD
- Overlay and Tool Startup Exclusion
- NITF TRE SQL Script
- Threat Feed IDL
Where can I get the PFPS and FalconView SDKs?
You can get the official FalconView SDK for earlier versions as well as documents and SDKs for the other parts of PFPS at the ESC Mission Planning Central website. You will need an account to obtain access to Mission Planning Central.
1) Go to Mission Planning Central (MPC) ( https://mpc.mission-planning.org/) and obtain an account on one of these three service portals:
- The Air Force Portal ( https://my.af.mil/)
- Army Knowledge Online (AKO) ( https://www.us.army.mil/suite/login/welcome.html)
- Navy Knowledge Online (NKO) ( https://www.nko.navy.mil)
The PFPS Platform Manager cannot help in getting one of these accounts. Please see your chain of command or your contract’s Government point of contact.
2) Once you obtain your account, return to Mission Planning Central ( https://mpc.mission-planning.org/) and log in, using one of the three types of accounts listed previously. Each portal has a different login process.
• If you use the Air Force Portal or Army Knowledge Online, going to https://mpc.mission-planning.org/ redirects you to the service portal sign-in page. After you sign in, you are directed back to https://mpc.mission-planning.org/.
• If you use NKO, you must FIRST log on to NKO, and join the NKO Mission Planning Community. That community’s page has a link to https://mpc.mission-planning.org/, and you will already be authenticated when you get there.
Once you are logged in to https://mpc.mission-planning.org/, request to join the Mission Planning Community by selecting the "About MPC" link and requesting access to the mission planning community by selecting the link under "How to access MPC information." This will send an email to the MPC help desk requesting membership in the Mission Planning Community.
3) Go to https://mpc.mission-planning.org/mpc-sites/SoftwareRepository/pfps/default.aspx and request access to the particular PFPS tools that you require. You may submit the request form electronically. You must have your commander, government point of contact (a civil servant or military member) or contract representative (a civil servant or military member) information so we may verify the request. THIS IS CRITICAL. The most common reason for rejection of an application is that the applicant did not provide valid contact information for the commander, Government point of contact, or contract point of contact. Contractors must bear in mind that this person cannot be an employee of their own company, but rather must be an employee of the Federal Government. The person listed may be asked to describe the program being worked on or provide other justification for the access before it is granted.
Why do I have trouble using FalconView 3.x As a non-Administrator?
PFPS stores essential information such as FalconView map data paths and Negative Fuel Approval in the Windows Registry in the HKey_Local_Machine\Software\PFPS section. The problem that arises is that the data stored in that registry by PFPS cannot be changed by a "basic" user of PFPS. This data may only be changed if the user has "administrator privileges" on the machine. A solution to the problem would be for the administrator to create a mission planning "group" and have all users be a part of the group. The administrator should provide the group of mission planning users full permission (read and write) to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\PFPS key in the registry. This allows the key, including all other keys under this folder, to be updated by the mission-planning users.
You also may have issues if you security settings do not allow users to change data in the C:\PFPS directory. If this is true, you will need an administrator to give the mission planning "group" read/write access to this directory.
What are the FalconView system requirements?
The tested minimum requirements are available in the "Version Description Document" on each copy of PFPS.
Generally FalconView runs acceptably on any "modern" PC. It should have 512MB of Ram, and a display card with at least 16bit color and 1024/768 screen resolution. We test FalconView on Windows XP and Windows Vista (FV version 4.1 and later).
FalconView runs better given more memory and faster processors. Map Data can require significant hard drive space depending on how much you plan to keep locally (faster) and how much you use off a network.
FalconView 4.1 is reported to run on 64 bit versions of XP and Vista but it is not officially supported. If you want to install it, you will need to first install a named instance of SQL Server express 64bit with the name "JMPS_SQL_SERVER" then you need to install PFPS by running the "setup.exe from the PFPS subdirectory (not by running the "Launch.exe application). Again this is not an officially supported environment but we have not heard of any issues.
FalconView 4.2.1 New Features
- Added the GeoData? Overlay which supports Keyhole Markup Language (KML) and Keyhole Markup Language Zipped (KMZ) import and export.
- Incorporated the Geospatial Data Abstraction Library (GDAL).
- Added the Situation Awareness (SA) Tool. Note that this was added retroactively to FalconView 4.2.0 Service Pack 1.
- Added an enhanced Super Splitter Multiple-Feed Support that works with the Situation Awareness Tool.
- Added the Vertical Obstruction Data importer.
- Added multiline Tooltip support (e.g., the tooltip shows a multiline Description for a point.)
- Added a Search bar.
- The NITF Files overlay is now called the Tactical Imagery overlay.
- Added height above ellipsoid (HAE) vertical datum options for the Running Elevation Mode section of the Display coordinate format.
- The About FalconView dialog has a "Version Information" tab that displays DLL version information.
- Added a "North Up" option to the Drawing Editor for inset graphics and maps.
Map Data Manager Enhancements
- The Map Data Manager recognizes the ARDTED and HRDTED variations of re-gridded DTED (RDTED) when it is available to your system. You see the tiles on the display and can copy the data to the target path, but the data are not rendered.
- Added support for Enhanced Compression Wavelet (ECW) map data
- Added a right-click option to the Multiple dialog that helps you to quickly locate map data when its tiles are not easily seen.
Tactical Graphics Enhancements
- Added "Unique Resource Number" and "Date-Time Groups" information fields to the Properties dialog Info tab.
- Added an Intervisibility mask generation capability via the Properties dialog.
- Added MOLE Support in the Tactical Graphics overlay.
- You can add custom graphics (PNG format) to the hierarchy dialog. Refer to the "Warfighting Symbology Customization" document in the FalconView Software Development Kit (SDK).
FalconView 4.2.0 New Features
Tabbed Map Display
- Show multiple map displays in different or matching scales. There is no practical limit to the number of tabs.
- Each display can have different file and static overlays.
- The tabs can be renamed. Right-click a tab for its menu options.
Display Calibration Tool
- A Tools menu option that allows you to accurately match the display pixels-per-inch (PPI) to a known standard.
Photo Geotagging Tools
- Add georeference information to the Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF) tags in a JPEG file. The modified files can be used with the drawing, moving map, and points overlays.
To Scale Zoom
- A Zoom menu option sets the pixels-per-inch (PPI) of the display to match the map scale, i.e., an inch on the display equals an inch on the map. Use with the Display Calibration Tool to interactively change the pixels-per-inch of the display to match a calibration standard.
Moving Map Enhancements
- Right-click any trail point and create links to it.
- Some feed setting selections produce an Auxiliary Data tab that allow you to make additional selections.
- GeoPDF maps are displayed by FalconView. The Map Data Manager and NITF Data Manager administer their files. An entry appears for this type in the Map menu if the data are available to your system.
- Enhanced Compressed Raster Graphics (ECRG) maps are displayed by FalconView. Current plans call for ECRG to replace CADRG as the preferred source for chart data.
- JPEG200 files with embedded Geography Markup Language (GML) are displayed by FalconView.
- JPEG200 files can be catalogued with the NITF Single File dialog. Click the "Add IAS/JPIP" button.
Status Bar Enhancements
- The status bar has several, additional panes available:
- ECRG Currency (Compact)
- ECRG Currency (verbose)
- Effective Scale
- Elevation Pane - Verbose
- Elevation Pane (Other) - Verbose
- Add a full or partial bullseye to a moving map or route rehearsal ship symbol. This bullseye can be used in the following ways:
- Determine impending course conflicts with other ships.
- Represent the radar geometry or weapons engagement zone.
- You can enter a street address in a separate utility, and if the address is found, center the map display on it, or add it as a point.
- Improved support for ArcGIS adds editing and geoprocessing capabilities.
- Improved map document handling and support for ArcGIS 9.2 and 9.3 is included.
- FvCommand is an external application that allows you to perform various map-coverage operations without running FalconView.
Solar-Lunar Analysis Tool
- The Solar-Lunar Analysis Tool (SLAT) is an independent application that incorporates and adds to the functionality of the previously available Darkness Planning Tool. Both use the Solar-Lunar Almanac Prediction (SLAP).
- SkyView renders Air Coordination Order (ACO) regions in three dimensions.
Unified Points Management
- Points can be modified and managed within a tabular editor. Changes made to the points database are fed to CFPS.
FLIP Currency and Import
- Import and check the currency of a Flight Information Publication (FLIP). The FLIP exists as an Adobe Reader® (.pdf) file. Imported FLIPs can then be viewed within the Airports overlay.
Compliance with Microsoft® Standards for Program and Data Storage
- FalconView is installed with the PFPS application in the program files directory, and user data is kept in the documents and settings directory:
- Windows® XP user data: \Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\PFPS
- Windows® 7 user data: \users\Public\documents\PFPS
Cursor on Target Support
- A plug-in based on the Cursor on Target (CoT) standard allows for collaboration on the Moving Map Display as well as the Drawing, Points, Tactical Graphics, and Threats overlays.
Maritime Vessel Plug-in
- The Maritime Vessel overlay is a plug-in that allows ships and marine-traffic-monitoring authorities to identify and locate other vessels.
Map-Data Manager Enhancements
- Right-click a map-data path in the Paths tab and select the "Explore" pop-up menu option. You can use the standard Windows® Explorer dialog that appears to browse for a specific file. This can be more useful than the "classic" map-data browse dialog that only allows you to browse to the folder level.
- More efficient coverage database queries result in the quicker retrieval of the tiles needed for screen rendering, which improves the speed of the map-drawing and map-tabs-generation process.
- Create a map tabs bar that contains a customized set of map types and scales.
Point Editor Enhancement
- The single-point editor dialog shows the source of the elevation data.
Route Editor Enhancements
- The Route Elevation Profile shows the DTED level used in the calculation.
- The tooltip for the maximum elevation point in a route corridor shows the DTED level used in the calculation.
FalconView 4.1.0 New Features
Tabbed Map Scales
- Change map scales immediately with tabs that appear along the bottom of the display. Toggle with the View > Map Tabs Bar menu option. Change the map type by clicking the type in the status bar and then select from the pop-up menu. If you don't have the type available in the viewing area, then the tabs won't change.
GARS Coordinate Format Support
- The Coordinate Format dialog has options for Running Elevation Mode and Global Area Reference System (GARS) which is used for fire support.
24-Bit Map and Imagery Support
- FalconView displays 24-bit maps and imagery.
DAFIF Edition 8 Support
- DAFIF Edition 8 is supported by the DAFIF Importer. DAFIF Edition 7 is no longer supported.
Vertical View Window
- The main display window can be split to show symbols appearing directly below the equivalent symbol on the map view and only are drawn if the symbol is in the current area of interest. It depicts the attitude of objects that are displayed on the current mapping area of interest. Currently supported in the moving map, route, and terrain avoidance mask overlays.
- When you scroll or scale the map view window, the vertical view is automatically updated to remove symbols that are no longer displayed on the map and adds or re-positions any symbols that are now on the map.
Key Length Value (KLV) Video Metadata Support
- A moving-map plug-in similar to the Predator ESD feed uses KLV-formatted video metadata to show the position of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) and the area of interest (AOI) of the UAV video in the form of a polygon.
XML Drawing Files
- You can save drawing files in Extensible Markup Language (XML).
- GeoTIFF files created with GeoRect? are automatically added to the map data server database without the need to regenerate coverage if the file is added to an existing map-data path.
- Planar GeoTIFFs and multiple images from a single GeoTIFF file are displayed.
- The registration and display speed of NITF was significantly improved. Thumbnail (overview) generation moved to the background to improve system responsiveness.
- Secondary or "insert" images are supported. These are positioned relative to the primary images and are stored in the same formats as the primary NITF images. They are toggled in an options dialog.
- Reading of JPEG2000-compressed images supported.
- Multispectral Image Display
- Query NITF image metadata so that you can search the NITF catalog on a local system or the network. You can then draw a bounding box over a geographic region and view a list of available imagery types in a tabbed editor similar to the Map Data Manager.
- Query unclassified and classified NITF Tagged Record Extensions (TREs).
Collaborative File Architecture
- Different users can simultaneously modify a mission-planning session.
- Collaboration is supported in Drawing, Points, and Threats (IThreat interface).
- You can set your FalconView Area Of Interest (AOI) to another users machine so the displays always show the same map and position during a collaboration session.
Map Data Server Enhancements
- Coverage-deletion speed has been improved by moving the task to the background.
- Map-data copy operations can occur simultaneously from different data servers, thus using network and drive latency time for maximum throughput.
- Improved BCP-loading speed by including with the coverage data the regions created when the BCPs are first generated.
Status Bar Enhancements
- A Status Bar Setup dialog allows you to modify the status bar in the following ways:
- Add or delete rows.
- Drag and drop an information pane to any row or from one row to another.
- Drag an information pane from any row.
- For example, you can show the primary and secondary coordinate formats at the same time in the status bar.
Tabular Editor Enhancement
- The overlay tabular editors have a File > Save As menu option.
Go To Enhancement
- The Go To dialog has an extra, editable box that shows the secondary coordinate format.
City Graphics (CG) Legends Support
- Right-click City Graphics maps published in 2006 and select the Get Map Info pop-up menu option to see the legends associated with a particular area of interest. The legends files (JPEGs) are copied or deleted from the map-data path when CG files are copied or deleted during coverage generation. Note that CG maps installed with FalconView 4.0.x, or earlier versions, may not have the legends information properly configured. You need to reinstall the CG files with FalconView 4.1.x, and later versions, to correctly load the legends files.
Route Editor Enhancements
- Doghouses have a lateral distance setting you can make to preset the distance they appear to the right or left of the route legs. The setting is available on a global, route, and leg basis. TP and DTD IDs have a lateral distance setting you can make to preset the distance they appear from the turn point symbol. The setting is available on a global and route basis
- The Points tabular editor allows you to drag and drop points between groups. You can modify the label font on a global, group, or individual point basis.
Airport Information Enhancement
- When you get information on an airport, FalconView and CFPS display the same information in an identical format.
Tactical Graphics Enhancement
- The Tactical Graphics Editor supports the Graphical Situation Display (GSD) 3.5.1 symbol set.
GIS Overlay Support
- The Geographic Information System (GIS) overlay is a plug-in that works with the GIS Server to let you view geospatial data. You can then alter display characteristics and thresholds and save those changes to ArcGIS Map (*.mxd) or Shape (*.shp) files.
LIDAR Map Support
- Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) maps are displayed by FalconView, and the Map Data Manager administers their files. An entry appears for this type in the Map menu if the data are available to your system.
Drawing Editor Enhancement
- A filled polygon object can be drawn without a border.
Route Distance for Ground Routes
- FalconView calculates the distance traveled over the ground, including the distance up and down slopes in the Route Elevation Profile if you specify a ground route in CFPS and enable ground-route calculations in the profile preferences. The actual distance over the ground is stored in the route.
Distributed Map Data Server
- The Distributed Map Data Server (DMDS) allows you to select a map-data path that contains current coverage data. If you select one of these paths, you do not have to generate coverage locally. The DMDS also uses a different icon to identify itself as such in the path list.
FalconView 4.0.1 New Features
Map Data Manager Enhancements
- Network performance was improved and coverage-file-generation time was reduced.
Miscellaneous Map Scales with ECHUM
- ECHUM is displayed on CADRG Miscellaneous Map (MM) scales.
Inset Picture in Map Display
- Display and print a map or other graphic inserted anywhere in the display.
- Display National Imagery Transmission Format (NITF) files as an inset in the map. Most of the NITF files currently used by mission planners are supported.
DTED Level III and Sub-1-meter CIB Support
- DTED Level III and 18-inch CIB are rendered and displayed. The support for sub-1-meter CIB depends on the pending NGA release of data. You can use the Map Data Manager to copy and delete the data files for these formats.
Customizable DTED Colors
- You can set the color of DTED elevation ranges.
RPF Frame File Metadata Display
- FalconView displays all user-oriented metadata available in a framefile (original chart datum, grid convergence factor, classification etc.) in the "get information" dialog.
- FalconView displays GeoTIFF files created by GeoRect? that have a transparent color to eliminate black corners on "out-of-true" images.
No More CMS DTED Support
- FalconView no longer manages and displays CMS DTED. The data format is no longer supported by the Air Force.
Route Turn Point Types
Route Rehearsal Enhancement
- FalconView displays an orbit at the specified air speed. When the orbit time is complete, the aircraft icon immediately jumps to the beginning of the exit leg regardless of the location that the aircraft is in the orbit. The air speed remains constant throughout all of the orbits.
Route Elevation Profile Enhancements
- You can do the following with the Route Elevation Profile Tool:
- Display the turn point number, DTD-ID or both.
- Resize the dialog.
- FalconView calculates the distance traveled over the ground, including distance up and down slopes. The actual distance is added to the route.
Air Refueling Tracks Display Enhancements
- Choose different methods to selectively display air-refueling tracks (ARTs) when the overlay is active:
- Display all ARTs that pass within a user-defined radius of the center of the display.
- Display all ARTs that pass within a rectangle that you draw on the display.
- Selectively toggle the display of any ART. If the ART choice is uncertain due to display congestion, an additional dialog allow you to select the ARTs from a list.
Data Import and Export
- FalconView imports geographic databases in the following formats:
- tab-delimited text
- comma-delimited text
- fixed-field-width text
- You can do the following with the imported data:
- Assign data types to fields with the assistance of a software "wizard."
- Save the information in standard FalconView overlay files (local points, CHUM, threats, drawings).
- Save the settings used for import as a template for use when similar files are received. Example templates are provided for common data formats such as NGA’s GeoName? geographic name database and their database of ports and airfields.
- Export geographic databases in tab-delimited or comma-delimited text.. You can specify which fields to export.
Tabular Geographical Database Editors
- You can view, edit, and print the following geographical databases in a spreadsheet-style, tabular editor:
- moving map
- Some of the tasks the tabular editor lets you do:
- An object selected in the map is highlighted in the editor and vice versa.
- Sort objects by any of the attribute columns (e.g., latitude-longitude, color, order of battle).
- Center the map on a selected object.
- Add the object to the Favorites list (threats excepted).
- Most of the object features that can be changed in their respective single-object editors can be changed in the tabular editor. Certain features (e.g., threat mask region shading) must be changed in the single-object editor.
Threat Editor Enhancements
- Select and copy multiple threats and then paste them elsewhere in the display.
- Edit the threat parametrics database when a registry key is installed. When the edit capability is enabled, a Government-provided tool lets you create and edit custom threat icons. Threat files can be opened in the original or modified parametrics database.
- Display move threats as a system or by their components.
- The threat tabular editor has some unique functions:
- Search threat files with text and standard wildcards.
- Show or hide threats based on their order of battle and their attributes within the order of battle.
Target Graphic Printing
- Print, or export, target graphics of individual points, or of a series of points selected in the points tabular editor. You can export the graphics in the JPG and PNG formats and include production of HTML pages with the graphic, coordinates, and other relevant point information.
- You can view a threat's maximum range as a sphere or cloud.
- SkyView continuously loads and renders DTED (including level III) as the aircraft "flies" beyond the terrain boundary.
- Lock your view onto a point of interest, and SkyView keeps that point in the center of its display regardless of where you position the ship symbol in the FalconView display.
- While flying along a route or Moving Map trail, you can look at any point along and around the route or trail.
Moving Map Enhancements
- FalconView supports multiple and simultaneous Moving Map feeds. You determine the dominant track used to drive moving map features. Third-party developers can develop feeds supporting multiple position indicators.
- FalconView supports multiple and simultaneous Predator feeds.
- During Moving Map display or playback, the local DTED is colored red, yellow, or green depending on whether it is above, near, or below the aircraft elevation, respectively. You set the buffer altitude. A special icon indicates the highest point within a radius you define.
- Up to three dots can precede the ship symbol to make a "best guess" prediction of the ship's position based on an extrapolation of the current and previous GPS positions. You set the timing of the dots (e.g., 10, 20, and 30 seconds).
Shape File Enhancements
- You have several ways to search the information in a shape file:
- Right-click any part of a shape file and get all of the information on the specific file.
- Enter a search string in the Fix/Point? control of the Go To dialog.
- Search for any string within the shape file or restrict the search to specific data ranges within fields. Searches can be exact or "fuzzy" and involve the entire file or just its labels.
- Perform Boolean searches on ranges within fields.
- FalconView restricts the searches to the topmost shape file as listed in the Shape Files Overlay Options or Overlay Manager dialogs.
New Text Box Drawing Item Attributes
- FalconView uses the font and fill of the previous text boxes for new text boxes. When no previous text box is on the screen, the highlighter fill is the default.
- FalconView shades the elevation above a specified height.
Illumination Overlay Enhancement
- The Illumination Overlay creates a chart that shows the amount of sun or moon illumination over a period of time. You select the following parameters for the chart calculation:
- location (datum and coordinates)
- display time (Zulu or local)
- twilight type (Civil, Nautical, or Astronomical)
- number of days (1-31)
Descend at Start of Leg
- To better match the way unmanned vehicles fly, the descent at the start of a leg is shown.
Frozen, Moving-Map, Data-Feed Indication
- A flashing icon indicates interruption of the moving map data stream.
Miscellaneous FalconView Enhancements
- Open "read only" files for display. Where practical, you are informed the file is "read only" and prompted for a new file name if a save is selected.
- Open multiple files of multiple file types simultaneously. For example, if you have a directory that includes a RTE, DRW, and THR file, you can select all files using standard MS Windows selection (Ctrl and Shift) keys.
- FalconView reads and stores data with Microsoft Access XP.
- FalconView supports up to twenty (20), third-party client editors.
- You can specify a data-storage directory other than the current data directories which are located under the PFPS root directory. This allows the PFPS install to conform to security standards in place for systems on secure networks.
New Programmers Interfaces
- The COM programmers' API has new methods to interact with, or extend, the Threat functionality in FalconView:
- IThreatFeed allows third parties to write real-time Threat data parsers.
- IThreatFile allows new file readers and writers of threat data.
- IThreat allows applications to add, change, and delete threats from an overlay.
- IThreatCallback allows a plugin to know when a user or other application manipulates a threat overlay.
- New extensions to the ILayer3 interface allow plug-ins to draw directly to the FalconView GDI Device Context (DC). This "immediate mode" interface gives programmers the ability to draw any desired graphics on the display in response to a Windows Paint message.
- The "Mapping Engine" of FalconView can be incorporated into other applications as an in-process COM object which draws into a user-supplied DC.
- New COM interfaces allow third parties to create their own Map Rendering Code to support custom map formats.
Vector Vertical Obstruction Data (VVOD) Overlay
- FalconView displays Vector Vertical Obstruction Data (VVOD) as a map and an overlay. Vertical obstructions similar to CHUM and ECHUM are displayed independently of the map scale.
- The Map Data Manager recognizes VVOD and generates coverage for it. The System Health dialog provides currency information and report generation. The Route Elevation Profile uses DTED and VVOD in its calculations.
FalconView 3.3.1 New Features
Custom Tools Manager
- An option in the Tools menu provides access to the Custom Tools Manager, which allows you to quickly add or delete custom tools.
Closed Airport Runways
- An airport with a closed, or currently unavailable, runway has two visual indications:
- The runway is outlined by a black, dashed line with a yellow background. This indication is visible when scaled in past 1:500 K.
- The airport information dialog shows yellow text for the runway. This indication is visible any time.
Refueling Orbit Boundary
- The air-refueling route anchor boundary airspace is shown.
DAFIF Edition 7 Support
- DAFIF Edition 7, in its tab-delimited form, is supported by the DAFIF Importer. DAFIF Edition 6 is no longer supported.
Threat Editor Enhancement
- The Personal Computer Integrated Intelligence and Imagery (PCI3) threat format is supported. If you have the DLL loaded, this file appears as a format option when you click the INTEL FEED button in the Threat Editor Toolbar. You then have access to records that have either an ELNOT or DIEQP identifier.
Display Meaning of VPF Attributes
- You can view the information values indicated in the Vector Product Format (VPF) database fields shown in the information dialog.
Vector Product Format Map Tile Copy
- When you select a map-data rectangle in a VPF map, the Map Data Manager copies all the tiles that cover the rectangle instead of just the topmost.
- FalconView displays maps, with a few restrictions, in the Multi-resolution Seamless Image Database (MrSID) format. MrSID is a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) compression format implemented and licensed by LizardTech?, Inc., of Seattle, Washington. You can do the following:
- View geo-referenced maps and imagery in native MrSID format similar to current GeoTIFF functionality.
- Copy and delete MrSID data with the Map Data Manager.
- Retrieve meta-data with the right-click pop-up menu.
FalconView 3.3.0 New Features
- This editor mode lets you create an air-refueling route that is not contained in the DAFIF database.
Tactical Graphics Editor
- This editor mode lets you add and edit MIL-STD 2525B symbology during the creation of tactical graphics overlays.
- This overlay uses DTED Level 1 or 2 data to show contour lines. An options dialog lets you set a major and minor elevation level, the display threshold, and elevation labels.
- This overlay uses DTED Level 1 or 2 to display solar and lunar shadows on the terrain based on the local time. An options dialog lets you select system or file playback time to determine the shadow and its update frequency, and the shadow color and shading.
- This File menu option takes you to a dialog that allows you to export favorites, file-based overlays, and miscellaneous Windows® files into a single electronic package. You can then move this package to another machine by using an electronic network, or digital media, and selectively extract the files to the second machine.
Overlay Options Support
- Overlay option dialogs were added for the Scale Bar, Contour Lines, and Shadow overlays.
- You can alter the appearance of the Main and Editor Toggle toolbars. Right-click any toolbar button and select Customize from the pop-up menu. The customization dialog allows you to add or remove buttons and set their order in the toolbars.
Drawing Editor Enhancement
- With the Drawing Editor active, you can draw a rubber-band box around drawing objects and save them as a group via a pop-up menu option. You can then copy and paste the group as a single object.
- The Map Data Manager recognizes Re-gridded DTED (RDTED) when it is available to your system. You see the tiles on the display and can copy the data to the target path, but the data are not rendered. RDTED has postings based on 30, 100, and 800-meter samples. The RDTED tiles align with CADRG maps with scales of 1:250K, 1:500K, and 1:5M, respectively.
NOAA Sectional Support
- FalconView displays NOAA Sectional charts as GeoTIFFs when created in the GeoRect? application. ECHUM can also be displayed on these maps.
- FalconView displays Equal Arc-Second Raster Chart (ARC) Digitized Raster Graphic (ADRG) maps as GeoTIFFs when created in the GeoRect? application.
Route Turn Types Enhancements
- FalconView displays the Turn Short Modification and calculates leg distances from the TP to the roll-in point or from TP to TP.
- FalconView displays a Gunship Orbit and calculates the route after entering the point.
Route Editor Enhancements
- An option in the General page of the Routes Overlay Options and Route Properties dialogs allows you set the Data Transfer Device Identification (DTD ID) with the direction of flight in a manner similar to leg times and NIBs.
- An option in the Doghouses page of the Routes Overlay Options, Route Properties, and Leg Properties dialogs allows you to set the Navigation Information Box (NIB), or doghouse, position to the outside of a turn. For a left upcoming turn, the NIB for the turn leg appears on the right side. For a right upcoming turn, the NIB for the turn leg appears on the left side. This helps reduce doghouse overlapping.
- An option in the Corridor page of the Routes Overlay Options, Route Properties, and Leg Properties dialogs allows you to see a mark (white crosshair) on the display for the highest peak within each leg's corridor.
- The route toolbars have a Center Map button that centers the display on the turn point in focus.
- You can save a route as a "route template" as if you had selected the CFPS File > Save > Special > Template menu option. The file is saved with an "*.rtt" extension.
- A plug-in module allows you to view solar and lunar illumination effects on an aircraft and its calculated route. You can view the shadow cast by an aircraft based on its altitude, the sun’s position, and the terrain elevation. Also lines that represent the transition between day and night are drawn as well as icons for the sun and moon positions. The icons indicate when the route heading is into a rising or setting sun. The information dialog for each turn point has detailed illumination data.
- The Playback dialog has a "Reverse" option to play back time-sensitive overlays in reverse.
Moving Map Enhancements
- The moving map display can be driven by position data from a Predator UAV video feed. You choose the feed option in the options dialog.
- The Course Deviation Indicator (CDI) shows the distance from the route in focus. The CDI remains functional even when other editors are active.
Blank Map Enhancement
- The blank map background color can be changed through an options dialog.
Multiple Point Database Display
- You can display multiple databases of flight-related geographic points (local points).
Point Export Enhancement
- Threats can be selected or de-selected for inclusion in the point export file.
Threat Editor Enhancements
- You can choose between a single, large, movable icon label with a leader line (similar to a cartoon text bubble) or eight smaller labels that are fixed in place.
- An editor option allows you to choose the simultaneous display of engagement and detection rings and masks.
FalconView 3.2.0 New Features
- You can rehearse calculated routes with a ship symbol that moves along each route. With an active playback control, route rehearsal can be used to quickly determine route conflicts. If a perspective viewer is installed, you can use a virtual camera to watch the route rehearsal from any point of view. The camera can also be attached to a moving ship to watch the playback from the pilot's point of view.
- Ship symbol characteristics can be changed for all routes and single routes.
Compact Playback Toolbar
- A compact toolbar is available from the View menu that allows basic playback capabilities for time-sensitive overlays. For more playback capabilities, you can use the Playback Control.
Vertical Route Profile Tool
- This Route Editor tool allows you to see the changes in elevation encountered over an entire calculated route. You can then adjust route points, or insert new points, to account for possible terrain clearance problems. You can also examine the changes encountered over any part of the route. If you click any part of the profile, you see the corresponding position in the FalconView display.
- This Main Toolbar tool allows you to quickly center and zoom in and out of any spot of the FalconView display.
- This Main Toolbar tool allows you to quickly center and scale in or out of any spot of the FalconView display.
Continuous Pan Tool
- This Main Toolbar tool allows you to pan the display in any direction (omnidirectional). You also have keyboard access to this capability.
User Interface Enhancement
- The display smoothly pans in any direction when you left-click and drag a movable overlay object (e.g., turn point, drawing object) to any edge of the display. You can perform continuous panning at any time without using the Continuous Pan Tool when you press and hold the space bar and drag the display with the mouse.
GPS Range and Bearing
- This dialog is accessed through the GPS Mode Toolbar and allows you to do the following:
- Add, edit, or delete one or more points or objects to which a range and bearing is displayed from your ship position to the selected point or object, or vice versa.
- Add or change the labels for these items.
- Save the list of items along with the GPS trail.
GPS Coast Tracks
- You can add and play back multiple "coast tracks" to the GPS overlay. A coast track is an unidentified aircraft with a known heading and velocity. A dialog that you access through the GPS Mode Toolbar allows you to do the following:
- Add, edit, delete, and label the coast tracks
- Obtain a range and bearing from your ship position to one or more coast tracks
- Obtain a range and bearing between two coast tracks
- Center the screen on a given coast track
- Set the projected course to either a rhumb line or a great circle.
- Display a course vector from the coast track icon. The length of this course vector reflects where the coast track will be at a set time or distance from the current position.
- During GPS playback, the coast track is displayed starting at the time of creation and follows a path based on the known heading and velocity.
GPS Trail Point Comments
- Multi-line comments can be added to any GPS trail point. A larger, highlighted icon indicates a trail point that has an associated comment.
Slowdown-by-Distance Point Editing
- You can select and drag slowdown-by-distance (SD) points inside of the Route Editor. The following operations are available with the SD points:
- Select and drag SD points along the inbound leg to the drop zone (DZ). The distance from the SD to the DZ when the point is dropped sets the slowdown distance in the Route Server.
- Set the distance from the secondary SD to the DZ in a similar fashion.
Vector Vertical Obstruction Display
- Although Vector Vertical Obstruction Display (VVOD) data are not currently produced by NGA, FalconView will read and display it from the source medium. Until NGA begins VVOD production, this overlay will not be available in FalconView. VVOD is a form of vertical obstruction data published by NGA as a draft-standard. The overlay will show vertical obstructions similar to CHUM and ECHUM, but the data are displayed independently of the map scale. Once distributed, this data may replace CHUM for some applications. The Map Data Manager will recognize VVOD data and generate coverage for it.
Vector Smart Map Display
- FalconView reads and displays Vector Smart Map Level 0 (VMap0) and Level 1 (VMap1) data from the source medium. Vector Smart Map is a new map type published by NGA. It is very similar to the vector overlay in older versions of FalconView but is more current. The Map Data Manager recognizes Vector Smart Map data and generates coverage for it. FalconView allows you to display VMap as an overlay and as a map.
Digital Nautical Chart® Display
- FalconView reads and displays Digital Nautical Chart (DNC) data from the source medium. The Map Data Manager recognizes DNC data and generates coverage for it. FalconView allows you to display DNC as an overlay and as a map.
- In the Route Editor, you can specify a route corridor with options such as line style, color, and independent corridor widths for each leg of the corridor.
Enhanced Map Projection Support
- FalconView displays and prints Lambert Conformal Conic (LCC), Mercator, and Orthographic projections in addition to the Equal Arc projection that was supported in previous versions. You can center the map and plan on latitudes N90 to S90 in the LCC and Orthographic projections. The Page Layout Mode supports LCC area charts in areas from N80 to S80 and single-page printing in the polar regions using the LCC and Orthographic projections.
Threat Positioning Enhancement
- The threat icon placement cursor consists of a crosshair-and-dot combination to allow you to accurately position a threat icon.
Drawing Toolkit Enhancements
- You can add and edit drawing toolkit objects in the drawing overlay with a text-based, manual-entry dialog. Drawing object types have a manual entry dialog that is similar to the existing object properties dialog. You can display all objects of a type in a list. This allows you to select an object textually, center the object on the map, and edit the object's properties.
- The Drawing Editor Toolbar has an Axis of Advance tool that lets you add a large arrow to the drawing overlay. This symbol designates a line of advance in the enemy's direction.
Minimized Distortion in Drop Zone and Chart Printouts
- Distortion in drop zone (DZ) and chart printouts (Equal Arc projection) is minimized through one of the following options:
- You can match the horizontal and vertical scales when printing with the "print window area only" map printing option. The image will be proportional to a "to-scale" map. The aspect ratio is based on geographic distances rather than on the dimensions of the map data itself.
- You can specify a scale factor when printing via the page layout tool. This scale factor allows the scale to be changed from 10 percent to 400 percent of its nominal value. For example, a JOG map printed with a scale factor of 50 percent will be printed with a scale of 1:500,000 rather than with a scale of 1:250,000. A 5-meter CIB map printed with a zoom factor of 200 percent will be printed with a scale of 1:12,500 rather than with a scale of 1:25,000.
Validated and Unit Drop Zones and Landing Zones Display
- An overlay type was added that allows you to view validated and unit drop zones and landing zones derived from the PFPS Drop Zones and Landing Zones databases. You can also display AZAR data as an overlay.
Airways Display Enhancements
- FalconView lets you choose different methods to selectively display airways:
- All or some of the airways that pass within a user-defined radius of the center of the display. You set the radius and select the airways you want to see in the Airways Overlay Options dialog.
- All airways that pass within a rectangle that you draw on the display.
- Pop-up menu options allow you to toggle the display of any nearby airways. If the airway choice is uncertain due to display congestion, an additional dialog lets you select the airway from a list.
NGA CD Library Manager
- A CD library function was added to the Map Data Manager. With it, you can do the following:
- Identify map data CDs based on selected map areas and filter criteria (e.g., map data type, geographic boundaries).
- List and print CD information including NGA stock number and National Stock Number (NSN).
- Manage a local, map data CD library with inventory information.
- Show the approximate area covered by a specific map data CD without having the actual CD.
- FalconView displays and prints the GeoTIFF map type, which includes the following types of maps and imagery:
- This new menu has options that allow you to "bookmark" and manage display locations so you don't have to remember a particular spot's coordinates, map type, or open overlays. The Favorites manager lets you add, delete, name, import, and export them.
Shape File Support
- FalconView displays a common commercial overlay standard known as "shape" or "*.shp" files. FalconView allows you to view any SHP file data (such as environmental overlays) and to change the display characteristics to a limited extent.
TDIMF over TCP/IP Intelligence Feed
- A new threat-feed component was added that allows you to receive threat data from a TCP/IP connection in a similar way to FalconView 3.1.2’s TDIMF feed through a serial connection. The feed supports the Joint Tactical Terminal (JTT).
User-Created GeoTIFF Application
- GeoRect? is a stand-alone application that works in conjunction with FalconView version 3.2.0 and higher. It allows you to convert a bitmap, JPEG or TIFF file into a GeoTIFF file, which can then be displayed in FalconView.
Ground and Maritime Route Support
- You can create and edit ground and maritime routes as supported by Route Server version 3.2.0. These route types have their own toolbar with different buttons and turn point icons. The toolbar requires activation by CFPS.
MIL-STD-2525 Threat Icons
- You have the option to choose a set of threat icons that comply with a subset of MIL-STD-2525, "Common Warfighting Symbology." The supported symbols are based on USSOCOM’s "top 100" symbol list which includes point symbols provided by the threat overlay.
Military Grid Reference System Support
- Support was added for the display of the Military Grid Reference System as an option in the Coordinate Grid Overlay. The Coordinate Grid Overlay was known as the Lat-Long Grid Overlay in previous versions of FalconView.
Universal Transverse Mercator Coordinate System Support
- Support was added to use the Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinate system as a coordinate format choice in the FalconView display.
- This FalconView mode allows you to capture and export specific portions of overlay data to a file that allows the retrieval of these points from the appropriate database or file. You can select points for export by drawing (and resizing) a geographic bounding box or circle. As part of the export operation, you can exclude any point within the region and include any point outside of the region.
Managed Areas Database Overlay Support
- FalconView displays data as supplied by the Managed Areas Database (MAD) developed by the Remote Sensing Research Unit (RSRU) of the University of California Santa Barbara. The geo-referenced data consist of all types of managed areas in the contiguous United States. You can also vary some of the display attributes and independently toggle the display of the managed areas by type.
DTED in Color
- FalconView displays DTED with colors that represent elevation ranges. A dialog lets you set the elevation range that a color represents. You can revert to gray-scale DTED at any time.
DTED Level 2 Display
- FalconView displays DTED Level 2 data (three-arc-sec post spacing). You have access to the same display options as are provided for Level 1. FalconView uses level 2 data, if available, for determining the ground elevation at the location of the cursor, or reverts to Level 1 data if Level 2 data are not available. Level 2 data are not used in the threat analysis or Vertical Route Profile Tool.
Copy Cursor Position to Clipboard
- The latitude and longitude of the cursor position is copied to the Windows® clipboard when you press Ctrl + J on the keyboard. You can then copy the values to any dialog or application that accepts a "paste" command.
City Graphics and Miscellaneous Maps Display
- FalconView displays CADRG map types known as City Graphics (CG) and Miscellaneous Maps (MM). City Graphics maps are detailed maps (generally of urban areas) at typical scales of 1:25K or less. Miscellaneous Maps are maps of various scales that don't fit NGA's defined digital map categories but are still valuable for planning. The most common example is NGA's Military Installation Map series covering Military Ranges. Other Miscellaneous Maps examples include maps produced by other countries that are a non-standard scale, or don't meet NGA's standards to be called a JOG or TPC map, for example.
Night LFC Map Display
- FalconView displays night versions of LFC maps. Automatic detection of these charts requires NGA's use of the proposed night file naming convention.
Snap to End of Runway
- You can snap to the end of a runway if the map scale is large enough to see the details of an airport.
DAFIF Update from the Internet
- You have the option to obtain the latest DAFIF data directly from NGA's web site. The DAFIF importer handles the downloaded data in the same manner as the data from a DAFIF CD-ROM.
PLGR Support for the Moving Map Display
- The moving map display operates with the AN/PSN-11, PLGR (ICD-GPS-153A compliant) as the GPS data feed. PLGR operation is the same as with the AN/PSN-11(V)1, EPLGR (NMEA-0183 compliant).
Overlay Print Scale Corrections
- You can scale the icons, text, and line widths by a variable percentage in the print options dialog for the ECHUM, manual CHUM, and DAFIF overlays.
FalconView 3.1.2 New Features
Page Layout Mode
- A Page Layout mode was added to the Editor Toggle toolbar. This mode allows you to create single-page charts, area charts, and strip charts.
- Doghouses, or Navigation Information Blocks (NIBs), are displayed for routes. You can show NIBs globally or on individual routes or route legs. A template editor is included as a stand-alone application so you can create custom NIBs. You can execute the application from Windows® Explorer or from the doghouse properties dialog.
- Time tick marks can be added to a calculated route at any point (time hack) along that route. You can add time hacks globally or on individual routes or route legs. For example, you can place a time tick mark along a route where it passes over a map location, and you need to know the time at that point rather than estimating from multiple tick marks. You can also add comments to the time hack when you first create it or at a later time.
Map Data Manager Enhancements
- The Map Data Manager (MDM) supports the simultaneous display of multiple map data types. In one operation you can check an area of interest for overlapping coverage by different map data types. A Map Data Manager Toolbar supports copy and delete operations across multiple map scales and data sources.
SkyView Perspective Viewer
- The 3D perspective viewer, SkyView, provides a 3D perspective view of an area, including any overlays open in FalconView.
Expanded Overlay Support
- Support was added for two, static overlay types: Heliports and Parachute Jump Areas. The DAFIF Importer gives you the option of importing these databases from the DAFIF CD-ROM.
Lat-Long Grid Overlay Enhancements
- The Lat-Long Grid overlay matches the grid found on CADRG maps, including tick marks and their spacing. You can control the line width, color, font, and other properties from the Lat-Long Grid page of the Overlay Options dialog. In addition, the Lat-Long Grid labels will rotate with the map.
External Application Support
- Support was added for the integration of custom, external applications within FalconView. A custom toolbar displays a button for single-click access to the application. For more information regarding the integration of external applications within FalconView, see the External Application Usage with FalconView Interface Control Document (ICD) in the FalconView Software Development Kit (SDK).
- The TACELINT feed feature in previous releases of FalconView was replaced by a Tactical Data Inter-Computer Message Format (TDIMF) feed.
FalconView 3.1.0 New Features
- A bullseye tool was added to the Drawing Editor. This tool resides in the drawing toolkit and allows you to rapidly add geo-referenced bullseye overlays.
Contrast Adjustment for CIB Images
- You can interactively adjust the brightness and contrast of CIB images with slider bars or incrementally with menu options under the View Menu or with keyboard shortcuts. There is also an Auto Set command that calculates the “best” brightness and contrast setting for a particular screen.
- FalconView draws an orbit racetrack when you specify one at an orbit turn point.
- FalconView draws S-turns when you specify one at a turn point.
- FalconView draws serpentine or “snake route” legs.
Route Line Properties
- Routes can be displayed as rhumb lines or great-circle lines. The lines and text used to display route legs can be assigned many different properties.
Route Time and Distance Tick Marks
- Tick marks showing time and distance can be displayed on calculated routes or particular legs of a calculated route.
- You can associate multiple links with overlay objects such as threats, local points, drawing toolkit elements (freehand line, simple line, polyline, polygon, rectangle, ellipse, text, and bull's eye), and route points. A link can be any document (whose file extension is associated with an application on your computer) that can be accessed over your network. Examples of such documents would be a Word document such as C:\mydoc.doc, a graphic file such as C:\targets\building01.bmp, or an Internet browser link such as http://www.weather.com. If you can view the file by double-clicking its icon in Windows® Explorer, it will function properly in FalconView. A common interface allows you to add, remove, and view links.
GPS Moving Map Display Enhancements
- A GPS Mode Toolbar was added that allows you to quickly change moving-map display options, specify GPS communication options, access a dialog to specify the aircraft symbol and its appearance, toggle a course deviation indicator that shows you how far off the intended course the craft is headed, and play back previously recorded GPS feeds.
ECHUM Update from CD or the Internet
- CD ECHUM allows you to automatically or manually import current Chart Updating Manual (CHUM) data from the monthly CADRG Supplement Disk (CSD) rather than download the information from NAVINFONET. This results in a dramatic decrease in the amount of time needed to import ECHUM data. You also have the option to obtain the latest ECHUM data directly from NGA's web site in a form known as WebCHUM. Either source gives you the same data.
Expanded Map Scale Support
- Support for the display of Low Flying Chart (LFC), Transit Flying Chart (TFC), and CIB one-meter map scales was added.
Threat Overlay Performance Enhancement
- Threat display speed was significantly increased from that in FalconView 3.0.1. The maximum number of threats was increased as well. The terrain-masking algorithm was also modified to match the Improved Many-On-Many (IMOM) electronic combat scenario software.
There are three ways to get FalconView:
Free and Open Source FalconView
The Free and Open Source Version is available on our download page. This version is distributable under the terms of the GNU LGPL license. It is exportable under Commodity Jurisdiction (ECCN 7D994).
In order to meet the requirements for release, we have removed any functionality that interfaces to military systems, that has a unique military application or that depends on government provided software components or data. The Department of State has determined that FalconView Open Source version Object Code and Source Code are not subject to the licensing jurisdiction of the Department of State. The Department of Commerce (DOC) advises they have as Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) of 7D994. See the FeatureMatrix for an overview of features supported in the Open Source Version. Consult the Department of commerce website for the details of the export requirements.
US Government Version (PFPS)
The US Government Version of FalconView is distributed to the US Federal government who then packages it into the Portable Flight Planning Software (PFPS) which is available for official government use. The DoD also sells this version to other governments through the Foreign Military Sales Office.
This version is freely distributed to all components of the U.S. Department of Defense and other National Government Agencies. The current versions of FalconView have been funded solely by the following components:
• Air National Guard
• Air Force Reserve
• U.S. Special Operations Command
• Air Combat Command
• U.S. Customs Service
• U.S. Coast Guard
• U.S. Navy
• National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
As the primary funding sources for FalconView, these components determine the total number and scope of the PFPS distribution.
To obtain a free copy of FalconView, you must follow the MAJCOM-specific procedures outlined below:
The Commercial Sales version is available for sale through the Georgia Tech Office of Technology Licensing. This version is not Exportable due to ITAR regulations. In general it is available to US companies who are able to comply with the ITAR restrictions. It is a subset of the Portable Flight planning Software version as we cannot provide features which are dependent on Government furnished code.
U.S. Government Availability
FalconView was developed with funding from the US government as part of the Portable Flight Planning System. US Federal Government users should request PFPS from the appropriate program office. The PFPS version is integrated with many other government tools and government data, providing functionality not available in the Open Source release. The DoD also performs certification and accreditation of the PFPS package which has not been performed on the Beta 4.3 version therefor Government users are encouraged to use the PFPS distribution channels described below.
I am in the Air Force. How do I obtain FalconView?
Air Force users may obtain FalconView from the Software Support Facility at Hill Air Force Base. Call 1 (800) 773-7739 to be put on the official distribution list to receive the latest copy of PFPS/FalconView as well as software updates. You may also e-mail the SSF at mailto:hill [dot] mpssfa (at) hill (dot) af (dot) mil.
I am a USSOCOM (AFSOC or USASOC) user. How do I obtain FalconView?
FalconView is released to USSOCOM users by the Special Operations Mission Planning Program Office (SOMPO):
SOF Mission Planning Office
commercial: 757-878-1050 x273
mailto://Bryant.Bullock (at) us (dot) army (dot) mil
I am a U.S. Army user. How do I obtain FalconView?
To Obtain PFPS/FalconView (Army):
or Denise Jacobson (AMP AMPS Staff)
email: denise (dot) jacobson (at) us (dot) army (dot) mil
I am a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) user. How do I obtain FalconView?
The US Coast Guard distributes the software for DHS use. Contact Bonnie Straton via e-mail to Bonita (dot) L (dot) Stratton (at) uscg (dot) mil to obtain a copy.
I am a U.S. Navy user. How do I obtain FalconView?
Navy users may obtain the USN version of PFPS (known as "N-PFPS") as well as technical support by contacting the Space and Naval Warfare C4I Programs Office at DSN 442-8071, commercial (888) 826-7748, or via e-mail to mailto:n-pfps (at) spawar (dot) navy (dot) mil.
How do I obtain the version of FalconView that NGA distributes?
TalonView can be ordered from DLA as NSN 7644015739027 NGA Ref Number SFTWRTALONVIEW ED NO 041. Users with the necessary credentials can download the software from https://www.geointel.nga.mil/product_type/softwareList.html.
I don’t fall into any of these categories. How do I obtain FalconView?
If you are a US DoD user, and you do not fly an aircraft, order TalonView, the NGA version of FalconView. If you are a US DoD user, and you need route planning for a DoD aircraft, contact the Army or Air Force Program Office (see the Air Force section above). If you are working on a Government contract and need FalconView to accomplish the requirements, your contracting officer will need to get approval from their MAJCOM. If you don’t fall into one of the above categories, contact the FalconView development team directly by e-mail (preferred) at falconview (at) gtri (dot) gatech (dot) edu or call 404-894-0889.
Foreign Military and International Sales
Services include general information for Foreign Military Sales (FMS) and international customers, coordination of demonstrations and visits for allied personnel, development of price and availability (P&A) data, and management of international programs.
All questions regarding international uses of Air Force Mission Planning products should be addressed to the following:
FalconView is available for sale to commercial, non-Government customers. This is usually only necessary for companies who are not under contract to the US government but who wish to integrate with a version that is close to a particular DoD version of FalconView. For more information on prices and availability, contact the following:
Office of Technology Licensing
Georgia Institute of Technology