Strange things going on in the skies

Just been having a look at Flightradar as there seems to be very few planes in the sky and this is what I could see,


Flight radar|690x319

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Yes just checked my app it appears that Google maps or ordinance survey are taking advantage of the quiet Skys and re-mapping I reckon anyway.

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Yes. The first one is Ravenair doing aerial photography for mapping. Here’s an article about it: Bizarre flight path over Liverpool sees plane 'zigzagging' across city and Wirral - Liverpool Echo

The second one is this EC135 helictoper which belongs to the Defence Helicopter Flying School: It’s doing a lot of flying from RAF Shawbury today by the look of it: Aircraft 0x4073ae - OpenSky Network

The last one is an RAF Voyager KC3 (Airbus A330).

The military stills seems to be operating. I can hear fast jets enjoying themselves overhead every day or two.


I think the Typhoons were out ‘playing’ around York today (usual for a Thursday) as well


culdrose have got helicopters on low flying daily seems even more than usual

The first one is ordanance survey plane. Second I’m not sure, but 3rd I think is military typhoons playing at dog fighting. I was lucky enough to be under them as they played.

people mentioned this on LinkedIn last week and this one was put on there

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I read somewhere that Police and military aircraft did not show on this type of app, is that right ?

It depends which app you’re talking about. And if the aircraft in question is ADS-B equipped.

FlightRadar24 filters out most military traffic I believe. doesn’t filter out anything.

That said if the aircraft isn’t ADS-B equipped there often* isn’t anything to see anyhow - for example the London Air Ambulances aren’t ADS-B equipped.

  • I say often because flightradar24 also uses MLAT to triangulate Mode-S contacts and locate them that way. So some aircraft without ADS-B do show on FR24 - if they’re reasonably high. The air ambulances often don’t show because they’re flying fairly low and therefore their transponder signals aren’t picked up by sufficient ground stations to triangulate their position. doesn’t do any MLAT so it only shows straight ADS-B contacts.

So if you had a military contact with mode-s only (no ADS-B), it wouldn’t appear on ADSBexchange. That’s not because it’s being filtered out. But rather because there’s no way of ADSBexchange knowing it’s location. (They would actually receive the mode-s transponder packets and store them in their database…but they wouldn’t show on the map, etc).

Whereas, FlightRadar24 might know the aircraft’s location (using MLAT) but they filter it out.

I’m hoping adds MLAT one of these days.


Ah! I just checked and it looks like they have added MLAT!

There are aircraft appearing in the list in yellow and the key says ‘MLAT’. Well I never!

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@FPVUK Great thanks I think that answers my question, I was referring to Flightradar24 as I’ve had the Police copter hovering above once or twice and it has never shown up on Flightradar24 yet air ambulance does…cheers

Give a try.

I can see 3 x C130J’s doing the rounds at the moment - and a Stratotanker too (which is being located through MLAT). Cool!

And none of these aircraft appear on

In fact, if I had to guess I would say that this C130J was doing air to air refuelling off the Stratotanker right now! chrome_SON5iqDgH5.png - Google Drive

Like this: Inflight Refueling • KC-135 Stratotanker To C-130 Hercules - YouTube

Both of them are being located through MLAT. Very cool.

There are 2 x Ospreys flying around right now as well.

I haven’t looked just lately but at night on one of the apps I have seen a slow moving (50mph) craft going on sorties from Lydd airport (Kent) and taking a route back and forwards a few times in the middle of the English Channel between Dungeness and east of Dover for two or three hours at time. This is said to be a large drone watching out for illegal immigrants coming to Britain. I won’t postulate to what they do about them because most seem to stay!

Thanks for all the info, I find the ADS-B fascinating showing all the military aircraft. there seems the be a high number of helicopters around Shrewsbury I take it there must be a base somewhere near there.

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Ordnance survey aircraft. Seen it loads of times

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Notams show the military flying area (outlined in red) over the North Sea on the east coast and over the North and East of England has been activiared

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