What is PDC and how can I use it?

Hi you all,
Does somebody know how the PDC system works for pilots, since I only found tutorials for controllers? Im especially interested in how it works with the Fenix A320 and if you can use it with the ATSU/AOC.
Thanks in advance!

PDC is usually sent by private text message. It’s independent of the aircraft.

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Errr, no. And yes.

  • in the US, VATSIM controllers will usually send PDCs as private chat messages to the pilot client software of the pilot. Pilots do not need to request PDC, ATCOs will send it automatically

  • in the rest of the VATSIM world, PDCs pilots request clearance through dedicated software, using the Hoppie CPDLC network.
    Some aircraft already have built-in CPDLC functionalities, e.g. in MSFS the Fenix A320, the FlyByWire A320neo, the Headwind A330-900 etc… Aircraft that do NOT come with an integrated CPDLC can still request PDCs through Hoppie, but pilots will have to use a standalone CPDLC-client, such as EasyCPDLC.

How do you use PDC/CPDLC? Watch this tutorial video that describes it for the FBW A320neo. There should be more information for the Fenix A320 as well, just check YouTube or the documenation of the Fenix Airbus.

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That’s interesting. I’ve not done much vatsimming out of the US so I wasn’t aware of this difference. Now I’m curious: why are PDCs treated differently in the US vs elsewhere on Vatsim? In reality, they work the same, so why a difference on the network?

Because historically the US controllers in VATSIM have delivered PDCs this way for quite a long time already. Also, the service through Hoppie’s system is a rather “recent” development and by far not all pilots are aware of familiar with it.
From what I read recently, though, even in the US you’ll find a few ATCOs who offer PDC through Hoppie and you can use CPDLC/PDC through Hoppie. When I fly on VATSIM, I categorically use it all the time. It is so convenient: get ATIS through a realistic interface, request clearance, enroute control through DataLink. In Europe, many ATCOs offer these sevices, which is quite cool.

Gotcha, thanks. I’ve heard of Hoppie but don’t know much about it. Might have to check it out!

Just a quick clarification that private message PDCs are still widely used across the Vatsim globe, they’re not just a U.S. process. The CPDLC network is commonly utilized in some regions but PM PDCs are still used.

PDC by private message is standard for Australia.

Yes. My assumption was that the majority of members either fly in Europe or in the States.