Austin Meyer Hints at Next-gen Weather System for X-Plane

August 3, 2020

Hidden at the bottom of the latest newsletter from Laminar Research, a little note from the company's founder Austin Meyer marks one of the first times his brand has shed light on what X-Plane will look like post-Vulkan.

The move to the new graphical API, Vulkan, from OpenGL, has taken up much of the social media spotlight recently, but now that we're closing in on the final beta of 11.50, we're still yet to learn Laminar's plans for once this is completed.

It appears a primary focus will be the simulator's weather engine.

According to Meyer, it is of 'critical importance' to deliver accurate weather to pilots, whether simulated or in real life - which is why he has constructed a system of 'download, acquisition, gridding and display' in his iPad EFB app Xavion.

"The weather is not just DOWNLOADED for a MAP [sic], but is instead loaded into a global, three-dimensional matrix of real weather to be ready for next-gen weather rendering and help with risk-assessment during flight."

Xavion is primarily used for real-world flight, though as Meyer goes on to say, many of the features can be transferred to the simulated world.

"With this global, current, 3-D weather matrix, we are now primed with the ultimate real-weather system for the next generation of X-Plane. Clearly, this system will be dropped into X-Plane, forming the foundation of our next generation of real-weather simulation."

Unfortunately, the earliest users can get their hands on the weather system in X-Plane will be in the 12th edition of the simulator. An 'early preview' of the simulated system is available in the Xavion app now, which can be downloaded here.

A new update for the iPad app is due to land later this week.

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