Jump to content

TigerTugsVRForumGen468Frasca VRForum468VOLO_VRGeneral468Helicopter Academy
- - - - -

Altimeter readings outside of USA

  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 brettjeepski


    VR Veteran Poster

  • VR Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 105 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Oakdale, CA
  • Interests:Flying, My wife, Skiing, jeeping, dirtbiking, kite surfing,
  • Company working for:REACH Air Medical

Posted 18 October 2009 - 17:57

So in the USA our altimeters measure in feet right? Does the European aircraft or any countries that use meters to measure have an altimeter that measures in meters?

Or does a Chinese, Australian, French, etc... pilot have to learn distances in feet to fly an aircraft?

Aircraft I have flown: R22BII, R44 RI, R44 RII, MD 500E, Bell 206B3, Bell 206 L3 AS350B2, AS350B3e, EC130B4,

#2 crashed_05


    VR Veteran Poster

  • VR Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 335 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bend, OR
  • Company working for:Leading Edge Aviation, Inc. ATP, Gold Seal CFII, MEI, IGI, AGI, & A&P

Posted 18 October 2009 - 20:07

In other countries, hectopascals, or millibars, are used for the altimeter setting in the kollsman window. I heard that this will soon be the ICAO standard. I have seen an altimeter that measures altitude in meters but not sure how common they are.

#3 lelebebbel


    VR Veteran Poster

  • VR Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 399 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Northern BC, Canada

Posted 19 October 2009 - 07:10

Altitude is measured in feet pretty much everywhere, except in older russian or chinese aircraft that have fully metric cockpits.
When In Danger
When In Doubt:
Run In Circles,
Scream and Shout

#4 rotorrodent


    VR Veteran Poster

  • VR Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 218 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Layton Utah
  • Interests:Helicopters, Flying, Computer Programming, ...the list doesn't end!

Posted 19 October 2009 - 11:04

Altitude is measured in feet pretty much everywhere, except in older russian or chinese aircraft that have fully metric cockpits.

I concur...only the Russians old aircraft have altimeters in meters. China uses meters for flight levels as we speak. So does Russia and North Korea. There are not any others that I know of that still use meters. You use a simple conversion chart to convert feet into meters when flying in those airspaces. For the China approach plates, there is a conversion table right on the chart for all altitudes used on the approach plate. Otherwise, it would be a nightmare to sort out conversions while doing an instrument approach. We have high tech altimeters that with a push of a button, displays both feet and meters (glass cockpit). All clearances are in meters. We set feet based upon the conversion table.

As far as altimeter settings go, the U.S. is fairly much the odd man out on using inch's of mercury. While there are a few others that use inches, most everyone now use Hpa (hectopascals). All Metars contain Hpa as a minimum. In the U.S., metars may contain both inches and hpa.

Great question offered by brettjeepski!

I have included 2 images of the arrival and approach for Shanghai if anyone would like to get the mental picture of my description.



Attached Files

*** Knowledge is what you get by reading the small print..
Experience is what you get for not reading it! ***

#5 Hans Olav

Hans Olav


  • VR Member
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Posted 25 October 2009 - 01:44

Gliders in much of Europe (at least in Scandinavia and Germany) use metric units; meters for altitude, meters per second for ascent/descent rate and km/h for airspeed. This is because Germany (which use the metric system) was the birth place for many of today's gliders.

Attached: Cockpit of a Grob Twin Acro glider.

Attached Files



    VR Veteran Poster

  • VR Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 315 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Arizona
  • Company working for:Arizona Aero-Tech

Posted 26 October 2009 - 15:10

About half the gliders I've flown in England, Germany, and Spain had metric Vario (rate of climb) but only a few had metric altimeters and ASI's.

Posted Image

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Content Spy

Genesys VRForum200_GeneralFreeFlight_General200MaunaLoaSoftwareVRGeneral200BLR Gen 200Spectrum_VRGeneral468PrecisionVRForumGeneral200HeliHelmets