X–Plane has been on the market for more than twenty years, or two decades. X–Plane has consistently set itself apart from other competitors (e.g. Microsoft Flight simulator [MSFS, MS–FSX] and Lockheed Martin Prepar 3D) by having superior native flight dynamics modeling for wings and propellers that excel based on an aerodynamic model called blade element theory.
The United States (U.S.) National Aeronautic and Space Administration (N.A.S.A.) utilizes blade element theory in its research and analysis, with an example that can be seen by clicking here. More can be learned about blade element theory from the International Congress of Aeronautical Sciences by clicking here. X–Plane comes with a small fleet of aircraft including a Cessna 172SP through a Boeing 747-400 and helicopters.
I hope that Laminar Research will invest in a turbojet engine simulations division to develop and implement a turbojet version of blade element theory. Thus, taking into account accurate thermodynamics and fluid dynamics (airflow) variable in order to accurately replicate turbojet engine simulation models for implementation into the X–Plane simulation platform.
X–Plane is available for purchase for the home Personal Computer (P.C.) version for $59.99 United States Dollars with an immediate digital download by clicking here. A U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (F.A.A.) certified Professional version of X–Plane “X–Plane PRO” is also available for purchase with more information available by clicking here.
The latest major update to X–Plane in its 11.31 version has several new features including:
- New ATC System
- Particles editor for aircraft
- Autopilot & aircraft systems updates
- Flight model improvements including:
- Wing force improvements: New drag coefficients for airfoil files
- Propeller and propwash modeling improvements
- Downwash modeling improvements
- Engine model (including Turboprop) improvements
- Body drag and sideforce improvements
- Trim and flight control improvements
- Helicopter ground effect enhancements for each increment of rotor blade(s)
- Glider optimizations
- New and updated global airports
The complete list of new features and fixes can be read by clicking here and here, respectively.
Current X–Plane users can update to the latest version for at no cost. Users will simply load the simulator and then click and open the “About” menu at the top of the screen with the mouse cursor. The current version of X–Plane will be listed as well as the latest available version. If the versions differ, there will be an “Update X–Plane” button on the bottom right of the window. Click the “Update X–Plane” button and the latest version of the updater program will be downloaded and launched.