LAMBERT – St. Louis International Airport Internet Flight Tracking System
Click here to view Airport Monitor.
Using (STL) AirportMonitor
AirportMonitor shows the flight tracks of aircraft arriving and departing to and from (STL), and from other airports throughout the region. It also shows aircraft transiting through our airspace.
- Green aircraft icons represent departures from (STL)
- Blue aircraft icons represent arrivals to (STL)
- Black aircraft icons represent aircraft operating to or from another airport in the region, general aviation aircraft, or aircraft that are transiting through the region at high altitudes
- Red indicates that you have selected a specific aircraft by clicking on it with your computer mouse
The size of the airplane icons is the same regardless of which type of aircraft it represents. At closer zoom levels, the size of the plane icon is larger than at wider zoom levels, to make the screen easier to view, and to simulate the effect of a changing “bird’s eye view.”
- General Aviation Identification
- “General Aviation” (GA) is a term that covers both small, private planes as well as corporate jets. One way these are divided is into “VFR” (“Visual Flight Rules,” generally the smaller, private propeller aircraft) and “IFR” (“Instrument Flight Rules,” generally the larger private or corporate jets).
- If a GA aircraft is flying “VFR,” it will often be identified by the software as a radio frequency code “1200” with altitude; and it will not contain aircraft type, origin or destination (this limited information on some GA aircraft is due to the way flight plans are filed).
- If a GA aircraft is flying “IFR”, AirportMonitor will usually have all of the same information fields available as for scheduled airline flights.
Helicopters are usually represented by black helicopter icons, although they may also show as a black airplane icon instead.
- Pause/Resume: You can now pause the flight activity, click on flights in pause mode to see who they are, then resume where you left off (works in both live and replay mode) – useful for taking the time to find the flight you want at your own pace
- Fast Forward in replay mode lets you choose faster replay speeds, to view the flight you want quicker
- Please note: Fast Forward works best if you don’t click too fast between the speeds. Allow each new speed to take effect before selecting a new one. Also, if you want to change the time of your replay, click back to “normal” speed before entering in a new time. Then click start again; once it starts replaying at your new time, you can change speeds.
- Color-coding for alternate airports: a separate color for flights from nearby airports local helps clarify and sort traffic
- Helicopter identification: some helicopters, depending on their speed and flight behavior, will be identified by a black helicopter icon (helicopters that are flying like airplanes may still be identified by a black airplane icon).
- Online help page: frequently asked questions and topics are now conveniently located right on the application
- Security measures: For safety and security, “Current” time on AirportMonitor is 10 minutes behind, some information is available in replay only, and military flights are removed. For more information on filtering in AirportMonitor, please see details below in Filtered Information.
- Departure color coding: departures are color-coded green on AirportMonitor. However, it can sometimes take several sweeps of the radar before a flight is identified positively as an (airport code or name) departure. As a result, some departures from (STL) will be color-coded black for the first few seconds of flight, then turn green.
If you are a first time user, please take a moment to read the information below, to familiarize yourself with what AirportMonitor does, and how it works.
If this is your first time using AirportMonitor, we recommend that you first read the material on this page to familiarize yourself with how it works. If you choose to bypass this page, you can always access the help page on AirportMonitor
The default view for AirportMonitor is “Current,” which is the actual flight activity around (AIRPORT CODE OR NAME), with a 10-minute delay for security.
When you click on a flight in “current” mode, it will display SOME of that flight’s identification (limited in current mode for security):
When you click on “Pause”, it will pause the display for viewing. You can click on any plane icon while in pause, and it will display the available flight information. Clicking “Restart” will pick up the flight tracking where you left off (to get back to the current time, hit “Current”). Pause and Resume work in both Current and Replay modes.
AirportMonitor makes all flights available in “replay mode” and makes them available up to three months for past flight activity to be played back at any time. This makes it easy to review flight activity at your leisure.
Flight numbers become active for a given flight one hour after it has first appeared on AirportMonitor. When you click on a plane in replay mode, “Airline/Flight number” and “Origin and Destination” airports are added to the other information available in current mode (“aircraft type” and “altitude”).
To operate the replay, use the pull-down menus at the top of the page and enter the corresponding date and time you wish (using the 24-hour clock system), and then press the Start Replay button. To end the replay and return to the 10-minute delay mode press the “Current” button.
Replay Mode Speed
In Replay Mode you have the option to choose the speed of the aircraft on your screen. This is useful for "fast-forwarding" to a flight or track of interest without waiting for it to appear in real-time. First choose the date and time of replay; then select the playback speed you desire; then click on "replay". You can also adjust the speed of playback after you are already in replay mode.
You also have the option to in Replay Mode – it works exactly the same way as it does in “Current” mode. (see above)
In addition to the 10-minute delay in “current” mode, AirportMonitor has other filters designed to enhance security or, in a few select cases, protect privacy.
- All military/national security flights are filtered from AirportMonitor
- As a result of the military/national security filter, some GA aircraft may also be filtered out, because of a similarity in the way they are identified by AirportMonitor.
- In either case, the filter can explain why you may from time to time notice a flight in the air, but are unable to locate it on AirportMonitor
- FAA requires that we remove the aircraft identification of certain General Aviation aircraft which have been granted a privacy waiver. These would typically be identified on AirportMonitor by “tail number” (such as N1234). Instead, these privacy-protected flights are identified as “ZQX.”
- All the other information about these flights, such as aircraft type, altitude, origin and destination, will be available as normal on AirportMonitor
Printing from AirportMonitor
Printing from AirportMonitor is a simple copy-and-paste process called “Screen Capture” or “Print Screen.” To print any AirportMonitor screen you’re looking at, do the following:
- Select the page or screen you want to print
- On a laptop computer hit the Function [Fn] and the [F11 key] simultaneously to copy exactly what is on your screen at that moment
- On a desktop computer hit the [Shift Key] and the [Print Screen] simultaneously to copy exactly what is on your screen at that moment.
- Open a new document in any word processing program, or any graphics program
- Select “Paste”
- The image of the screen you copied will appear as a single picture
- Print (or Save, then Print, if you want to keep the image)
Click this button on the top right corner of the AirportMonitor page to receive troubleshooting tips and answers to the most frequently asked questions.
Understanding Airline and Aircraft codes
The information contained in some of the data fields is encoded to conform to standard FAA contractions (or shorthand). If you wish to decode the information in the Flight ID, Aircraft Type, and Origin and Destination fields please click on the following links:
- Aircraft Type
- Airline Code
- Airport Identifier
A Word about Radar
Aircraft tracking radar, and the software that supports it, while highly reliable, is also complex. Sometimes circumstances can interfere with the signal, causing temporary distortions. For example, you will probably notice that an aircraft flying directly over (STL) may temporarily disappear from the screen and then reappear away from the airport. This is due to the aircraft passing directly over the radar antenna and the temporary loss of signal. You may also notice aircraft icons sometimes “dropping off” and/or suddenly doing unusual things. This is especially true in the area immediately around (STL), but could also occur away from the airport as well. These “ghost” aircraft are due to radar reflections around the airport, and possibly from terrain and meteorological conditions farther away from STL).
- A reasonable amount of memory is necessary. A minimum 64 MB of RAM is recommended.
- AirportMonitor may take some time to load and begin playing, depending on the speed of your communication link and computer processor. The performance of AirportMonitor will be adversely affected by slow or intermittent Internet connections.
- AirportMonitor is a resource intensive application that is best run without any other applications open at the same time.
- The optimal screen resolution for viewing this site is 1024 x 768
THIS WEB PAGE AND THE FLIGHT TRACKING INFORMATION IS A PUBLIC RESOURCE OF GENERAL INFORMATION. THE USE OF THIS SITE IS FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY. (AIRPORT CODE OR NAME) MAKES NO WARRANTY, REPRESENTATION OR GUARANTEE AS TO THE CONTENT, SEQUENCE, ACCURACY, TIMELINESS OR COMPLETENESS OF ANY OF THE DATABASE INFORMATION PROVIDED HEREIN. THE USER OF THIS SITE SHOULD NOT RELY ON THE DATA PROVIDED HEREIN FOR ANY REASON. (AIRPORT CODE OR NAME) EXPLICITLY DISCLAIMS ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. (AIRPORT CODE OR NAME) SHALL ASSUME NO LIABILITY FOR:
- ANY ERRORS, OMISSIONS, OR INACCURACIES IN THE INFORMATION PROVIDED REGARDLESS OF HOW CAUSED; OR
- ANY DECISION MADE OR ACTION TAKEN OR NOT TAKEN BY THE USER OF THIS SITE IN RELIANCE UPON THE INFORMATION OR DATA FURNISHED