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Instrument Landing System


If you install the ILS equipment and put your target lock to a station then will use your steering controls and guide your ship into the dock. Meantime the speed controls are in your hand so you can ignite Injectors to arrive much faster than with the old Docking Computers.

The ILS mark the current waypoint with a white flashing lightball which will approach the dock if you go nearer to the station. You can temporary override the ILS steering but when you release your controls the ILS will turn your ship to the waypoint again.


Note that there is no on/off switch for ILS. You can stop if needed by lowering your thrust to zero, for example to avoid a collision.

ILS steering suspended until your ship is stopped, so if you want to do another than landing then you can stop and lock the station.

If you change or remove the target lock the ILS turn off automatically.

Another way to avoid ILS is the missile targeting mode: use the "t" key instead of "r" to lock a station and ILS will not switch on.

No ILS in red alert except if weapons are offline.

ILS will rotate your ship in the last 2km if your ship is wider than the height of the dock.

Cost: 50.0₢
Techlevel: 5

No more traffic jams!

NPC ships can dock much faster with ILS, using a shorter path and injectors, narrow ones without roll. This helps cure traffic jams near stations when you are waiting for landing clearance. You don't need to buy the ILS equipment yourself, just keep the .oxp installed and all the NPCs will use it! Injector-equipped ships will arrive in seconds, slowing down in the last 2km only.

Ils npc.png

You must wait until the current ILS-user ship is docked before you can use ILS.

If you target the station while another ship is using ILS then you lock on the landing ship - a help to find where it is. If you keep the station in your crosshairs when the current ship arrives into the dock then you get the right to use ILS regardless of whether there are others in the queue.

Alternatively you can wait until all ships arrive into the dock - you cannot break off an already started ILS approach.


If you do not know what you are doing, this can be a very effective way of visiting St Giles in The Pool of Pellucid Placidity! Or losing cargo or damaging your craft! Note that as your shields improve (Shield Boosters & Military Shield Enhancement), the speed at which you can survive increases too! The two most common issues are

(i) the ILS targeting something else which comes into its sight during the docking procedure - and either ILS looses its lock on the dock, or it fixates on another dockable and goes after that - in either case the change of direction can incur fatal consequences (this can actually happen inside the docking tunnel of hermits, for example);
(ii) docking with a moveable large ship - eg a Behemoth or a Deep Space Dredger - where the dock is at the front end: too slow an approach will result in the large ship attempting to avoid your ship and can lead to the loss of one's third dimension as one's ship is spread out thinly over the surface of the large ship.
  • Combining ILS with Telescope increases the opportunities for the loss of one's third dimension.

Advice: In such cases (and especially when approaching large moving objects such as Behemoths/Liners/Deep Space Dredgers) it is usually safest to detour around the object so that you can approach it from the side of the docking bay, thus limiting the gyrations required for the operation. If docking clearance protocols are not enabled (one of the F2 game options), then you can repeatedly press "L" which inhibits the objects own gyrations.


Oolite v1.79 or later.


Do not unzip the .oxz file, just move into the AddOns folder of your Oolite installation.


This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License version 4.0. If you are re-using any piece of this OXP, please let me know by sending an e-mail to norbylite at


2020,08,12. v1.13 Calculate Dock world-coordinates orientation by concatenating its orientation in 
                  station model-coordinates with the Station orientation in world-coordinates.
                  Get direction of Dock widest dimension (depth excluded)  based on Docks dimensions
                  and world-coordinates orientation (general case, should work for all kinds of
                  dock's placement on station models).
                  Use Dock's heading instead of Station's heading to get the position to aim on
                  Change rotation sync logic: if the ship's rotation is lagging, rotates in the same
                  direction as the station; if it's advanced, rotate against the station; this avoids
                  rotating too much inside the dock if a longer interval between FCB calls gets the
                  ship sufficiently out-of-sync to start correcting again (the "let's rotate once
                  more now we are inside the dock" bug...).
                  Limit ship's rotation in rotation sync to the max roll that ship can do in the FCB
                  time interval.
                  If the ship is approaching fast, start rotation sync farther away and rotate as
                  much as possible in each FCB call, otherwise do it more leisurely (for the visual
                  beauty... might be still too fast for that and need some tuning).
2020.07.16. v1.12 Off-centre dock alignment fix for player and NPC's, performance enhancements, 
                  improvements to auto-docking movements. Thanks to dybal.
2016.05.20. v1.11 Rotation fix at Torus stations, thanks to pkhb.
                  Smoother start of ILS steering as the ship has inertia.
2016.03.27. v1.9  ILS will rotate your ship in the last 2km if wider than the height of the dock.
                  Wide NPCs can rotate before dock to prevent lockdown at non-rolling stations.
                  NPC will slow during ILS approach when a ship is near to prevent collision.
                  Use less CPU by searching new ships in timer instead of FCB.
                  Fixed a minor bug in NPC logic when player launch.
2016.01.11. v1.8  Display a warning message if you must roll to fit into the dock.
                  No ILS in red alert except if weapons are offline.
                  NPCs will not dock until player has docking clearance.
                  NPCs will not use ILS at moving docks like Behemoth.
                  Landing NPC will stop when player launch from a station.
                  No more auto target lock on new ILS user NPCs.
2015.11.29. v1.7  Wide NPCs can use ILS, these will wait for the right position.
                  Lonq queues finish faster due to the speed based selection of next NPC.
                  Auto switch to the next ship when the current ILS user suffer attack.
                  No more "ILS set to" message when player is docked.
2015.11.28. v1.6  NPC ILS improved: earn higher speed and up to 95m width for Krait.
                  Must wait NPC to dock before ILS can be used by the player.
                  Targeted NPC will not get priority over others.
2015.11.27. v1.5  Most NPC ships can dock faster without roll, up to 80m width.
2015.03.21. v1.4  Fixed landing in Rock Hermits.
                  Fixed a bug with Towbar.
2014.10.01. v1.3  No ILS in missile targeting mode.
                  ILS steering suspended until player ship is stopped.
                  Fixed Telescope visual target shaking during ILS steering.
                  Using reduced turn rates when there is a ship on Towbar.
2014.09.30. v1.2  Refined approaching curve with less sharp turn at the end.
                  Fixed the white marker.
2014.09.29. v1.1  Small fixes, for example Carriers will not turn on ILS.
2014.09.29. v1.0  First release.


ILS-1.13.oxz‎ (downloaded 0 times).

Old versions:

ILS.1.12.oxz‎ (downloaded 0 times).

ILS.1.11.oxz‎ (downloaded 2091 times).

ILS.1.9.oxz‎ (downloaded 409 times).

ILS.1.8.oxz‎ (downloaded 613 times).

ILS.1.7.oxz‎ (downloaded 409 times).

ILS.1.4.oxz‎ (downloaded 1455 times).


You might wish to consult How to tweak OXZ's

Quick Facts

Version Released License Features Category Author(s) Feedback
1.12 2020-07-16 CC BY-NC-SA 4 Landing System Equipment OXPs Norby BB-Link