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Using FSX as a simulator for external embedded hardware-in-the-loop simulation?

Hi guys,

Can FSX be used as part of a "hardware-in-the-loop" simulator for external embedded hardware?

What data can be "got at" using SimConnect (and possibly FSUIPC) and handled by external processes?

Essentially, what I need is the ability to take data (airspeed, acceleration in 3 dimensions, altitude, and so on for hundreds of parameters) from the simulator, use a custom software interface to convert the data into a format that can be understood by the external embedded hardware (probably over the ethernet, serial or CANBus protocols), feed it into the embedded hardware, then take the outputs of the hardware and feed them back into the sim (again, with custom software).

Thanks! :)

Yes, you can do that with either FSUIPC or SimConnect. As to whether all the variables you want are provided through those interface is another matter. On top of that, many are read only.

Your best bet is to download the FSUIPC SDK and go through the list of offsets looking for the ones you need, or look at the Variables and Events sections in the Core modules portion of the FSX SDK. (Which isn't available for download, it's part of FSX Deluxe edition, but the documentation can be found online, hosted elsewhere.)


Yes, it is possible (depends a bit on which hundred other variables you need of course). But for the basic ones of an aircraft it should not be a problem.

I would first take a look at the SimConnect SDK, that should probably be enough. Or else you can always look at FSUIPC as well.
Thanks for the reply Si.

I have FSX so will load up the SDK and give it a look-see. As for FSUIPC, I can find the FS2004 SDK, but there appears to be not one released for FSX yet.

Various read only params *shouldn't* be a problem - the embedded hardware will only be adjusting what aircraft systems can adjust anyway...


The FSX FSUIPC SDK is probably available from a sticky thread at the top of Pete Dowson's support forum if it's not available on the main FSUIPC download page. There's definitely one available.

Thanks for the replies!

I found a list of FSX offsets in the FS2004 FSUIPC SDK - it seems to be for all versions, even though it does not say it is for FSX...

As far as parameters go, basically I need to "fool" my hardware into thinking it is in a real aircraft and provide it with air and inertial data, and have the sim respond to control/command inputs from the hardware.


Has anyone created a plugin for this issue. I am in the process of designing a UAV and I would love to use FSX as a flight simulator.
I've used FSX (and later ESP) as 3D external awareness and camera payload visual feedback for a UAV simulator but in that case the dynamics were driven by different software.

I guess what I am asking is there a way of getting FSX to output IMU and GPS data to a serial port or maybe a tcp port, and receive surface, gear and throttle control from the same or a different port. Thats all I need really, well and I need the format to be in float.
With the FSUIPC or SimConnect interfaces that is possible. But you would have to program it yourself.
I have never used SIM connect and I am a hardware design engineer by trade so I'm not much good @ software development do you think you or some one you know could help out, the I/O I need should be simple.

If its truly simple I could probably coded it up myself but I'd still need to be pointed in the right direction.