Being a complete radio geek, I've always been a bit disappointed with FG's emulation of radio communications, such a huge part of flying. I've been trying since the Victor to find a way for aircraft like ours to work well with the various radio bits there are in FGFS, but FGCom is a bit disappointing and not really designed to really interact with FG. This is why I'm really excited about my new project.
In the first place, I'm in the middle of perfecting a PTR-175 transceiver unit, a ubiquitous U/VHF radio that was fitted to a huge range of aircraft and was driven by a wide number of head units. I love creating working 3D models of these units, and hope to be adding some more to the range. At the moment, it's being developed with the C1607/4 unit fitted to the Victor B2 and Lightning. It communicates with the head unit in a way that means a real unit could be wired in to control the software PTR-175.
I'm hoping to harness the awesomeness of SDR, which is a method of sampling and streaming the entire radio spectrum. It effectively means the radio can output audio decoded from the real airwaves, enhancing realism. Less ambitiously, I also think I can open up the UHF military frequency band, currently unsupported in FlightGear, by using a Mumble server and a light client. We can have air-to-air and air-to-ground voice radio, limited by range, which can be semi-accurate as Mumble supports positional audio. That positional capability could also allow for the use of homing/SAR beacons - great for helicopter based FlightNights, for instance. It's also very simple to create broadcast-only channels (with better text to voice capability than FG's festival implementation) for systems like telebrief, and also possible to create group channels away from the UHF frequency band for large-aircraft intercom.
The idea is not to replace Teamspeak, but to provide an alternative, FG-integrated platform for when "team" communication is important, rather than everyone in the same room (which is still essential for the social aspect of flights). So, you can use TS for wide group communications, a UHF frequency for "team" or "in character" radio transmissions, and also tune into homing beacons, real-life traffic etc. if you're bored on a long flight. It's also intended to allow more realism enhancement by "breaking out", for instance by real hardware controllers or supporting real flight helmet audio.
I'm already running the Mumble server and things look promising. Watch this space
The following user(s) said Thank You: StuartC, Avionyx, ScottBouch