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As the computer technology of aircraft navigation systems became more and more sophisticated, aircraft and avionics manufacturers attempt to exploit this computer capability in aircraft operations. One of the most profound capabilities being exploited recently is the aircraft’s capability of navigating vertically on an instrument approach without reference to an external electronic guidance signal such as an ILS glideslope or MLS elevation signal. This mode of operation is called "VNAV". The vertical guidance is usually based on barometric altimetry augmented with information from a mix of navigation sensors. Vertical command information may be retrieved from the aircraft’s aeronautical information database or from the pilot’s input into the Flight Management System (FMS). Vertical command information while conducting VNAV on a conventional non-precision approach is normally retrieved entirely from the aircraft’s aeronautical database.

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