Brightness sensor?


Any way to know that the ambient brightness is?
A use case for this would be automatic lights or automatic brightness adjustment for displays.

Thank you!

Yes, we also need a way to detect ambient light level. It has been a struggle since day 1 to enable displays that aren’t too bright or too dim. This continues to frustrate users and I haven’t found a workable solution.

There is E:TIME OF DAY, Enum which will provide 4 values for each segment of the day.

There is also A:GLASSCOCKPIT AUTOMATIC BRIGHTNESS, Percent over 100, but this not any better because it simply returns a value between 0 and 1 which just follows time of day anyway. It won’t give you any help when it’s raining or overcast.

I see some general problems with the sim though with respect to an ambient light detection feature:

  • The scenery lights can sometimes blow out the lighting, meaning it is dark but you are on a well-lit ramp.
  • Orientation in the cockpit will change the light level, based on how much of (for example) the glareshield is visible in the viewport vs the bright open sky. This is really dynamic so the brightness could be going up and down too rapidly as you are working in the cockpit.

I’m sure it would be doable to create a SimVar that probes the datum and gets a brightness value

As mentioned above, those aren’t useful as they only account for time of day and not actual ambient brightness

Maybe you will find this useful as inspiration for your own implementation
msfs-avionics-mirror/src/sdk/utils/controllers/Backlight.ts at main · microsoft/msfs-avionics-mirror (

Thank you for this,

I already have sun position calculation in my code but it doesn’t fix the underlaying issue of cloud coverage or shadowing.

Hello @runshotgun ,

We have no way to get the ambient luminosity for now.

The best solution we can provide is indeed the A:GLASSCOCKPIT AUTOMATIC BRIGHTNESS SimVar.

Best Regards,