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Radar Basics

Introduction 2 Radar technology
RADAR stands for RADIO DETECTION and RANGING. Before World War II, experiments were performed with electronic systems to find the range of aircraft or other targets by transmitting radio pulses and measuring the time delay in receiving an echo back from the target.

During z war Radar is an important weapon & tool in z conflict. with the opponents developing radars of increasing sophistication --as well as "electronic intelligence (ELINT)" systems to spot enemy radars and "electronic countermeasures (ECM)" systems to jam them.

 Reflection of electromagnetic waves:- The electromagnetic waves are reflected if they meet an electrically leading surface.

Fig:The EM spectrum

Figure : Waves and frequency ranges used by radar.

Figure : The measuring of a round trip time of a microwave pulse

 The electrical signal picked up by the receiving antenna is called echo or return.  All targets produce a diffuse reflection i.e. it is reflected in a wide number of directions. The reflected signal is also called scattering.  Backscatter is the term given to reflections in the opposite direction to the incident rays.  Radar signals can be displayed on the traditional (PPI)  A PPI has a rotating vector with the radar at the origin, which indicates the pointing direction of the antenna and hence the bearing of targets.
Fig: Block diagram of a primary Radar

 DISTANCE DETERMINATION _The distance is determined from the running time of the highfrequency transmitted signal and the propagation C0. _ The actual range of a target from the radar is known as slant range. _ ground range is the horizontal distance between the emitter and its target and its calculation requires the target's elevation. R = Co· t /2 Co= speed of light = 3·108m/s t = measured running time [s] R = slant range antenna -aim [m]

Fig: Radar principle

 DIRECTION DETERMINATION _ The angular determination of the target is determined by the directivity of the antenna. _ By measuring the direction in which the antenna is pointing when the echo is received, both the azimuth and elevation angles from the radar to the object or target can be determined. _ The True Bearing (referenced to true north) of a radar target is the angle between true north and a line pointed directly at the target.


Figure : Direction-determination (bearing)

 Maximum Unambiguous Range - The maximum range at which a target can be located is called maximum unambiguous range or the first range ambiguity. The PRF determines this maximum unambiguous range of given radar before ambiguities start to occur: Rmax =Co*(PRT- PW )/2 ≈ (( PRT - PW ) in [ µs ]) /6.66 µs ] -The pulse width (PW) in Zs eqn. indicates that the complete echo impulse must be received.


Figure : a second-sweep echo in a distance of 400 km

 Minimal Measuring Range - The minimal measuring range Rmin (“blind range”) is the minimum distance which the target must have to be detect. - Therein, it is necessary that the transmitting pulse leaves the antenna completely and the radar unit must switch on the receiver. The transmitting time τ and the recovery time trecovery should are as short as possible, if targets shall be detected in the local area. Rmin =c0·(τ + trecovery)/2 in m - Targets at a range equivalent to the pulse width from the radar are not detected. A typical value of 1 µs pulse width of a short range radar corresponds to a minimum range of about 150 m, which is generally acceptable.


Figure : The Radars “blind range”

 Elevation Angle - The elevation angle is the angle between the horizontal plane and the line of sight, measured in the vertical plane. The Greek letter Epsilon (ε) describes the elevation angle. The elevation angle is positive above the horizon (0° elevation angle), but negative below the horizon.


Figure : Definition of elevation angle ε

 Range Resolution - Range resolution is the ability of a radar system to distinguish between two or more targets on the same bearing but at different ranges. -The degree of range resolution depends on the width of the transmitted pulse, the types and sizes of targets, and the efficiency of the receiver and indicator. -Pulse width is the primary factor in range resolution. Sr ≥ (c0 · τ)/2 τ is pulse width time


Figure : range resolution


 -Z figure shows z operating principle -The radar antenna illuminates the target with a microwave signal, which is then reflected and picked up by a receiving device. -The radar signal is generated by a powerful transmitter and received by a highly sensitive receiver.


Fig: Primary Radar


- As well as seeing “hostile” aircraft it soon became apparent that Radar was a good tool to see “friendly” aircraft and hence control and direct them. - If the “friendly” aircraft is fitted with a transponder (transmitting responder), then it sends a strong signal back as an “echo”. - An active also encoded response signal which is returned to the radar set then is generated in the transponder. This proved very useful for the military in seeing their own aircraft clearly.

Figure : Large Vertical Aperture Antenna

CW radar sets transmit a high-frequency signal continuously. The echo signal is received and processed permanently. - One has to resolve two problems with this principle: 1. prevent a direct connection of the transmitted energy into the receiver (feedback connection), 2. assign the received echoes to a time system to be able to do run time measurements.

Figure : Continuous- Wave Radar uses two antennas often

 A direct connection of the transmitted energy into the receiver can be prevented by: - spatial separation of the transmitting antenna and the receiving antenna, e.g. the aim is illuminated by a strong transmitter and the receiver is located in the missile flying direction towards the aim; - frequency dependent separation by the Doppler-frequency during the measurement of speeds.  A CW-radar transmitting a unmodulated power can measure the speed only by using the Doppler- effect. It cannot measure a range and it cannot differ between two reflecting objects.  This radar uses a frequency of 24.125 GHz. It can measure the speed of the incoming and the outgoing traffic.
Figure: Speed Gauge ,TRAFFIPAX SpeedoPhot



-CW Radar’s they cannot measure distance. -In order to correct for this problem, phase or frequency shifting methods can be used. -In the frequency shifting method, a signal that constantly changes in frequency around a fixed reference is used to detect stationary objects and to measure the rage. -In such FMCW, the frequency is generally changed in a linear fashion, if the frequency is continually changed with time, the frequency of the echo signal will differ from that transmitted and the difference Δf will be proportional to round trip time Δt and so the range R of the target too. -Range calculation : R= =
Co=Speed of light =3 , m/s Δt= Measured time d/c , s Figure : Ranging with an FMCW system R=distance altitude to terrain , m df/dt=Transmitter frequency shift per unit time.

-Measuring the difference between the transmitted and received frequencies gives the range to the stationary target.

 A bi-static radar consists of separately located (by a considerable distance) transmitting and receiving sites. - By use of the same frequency two mono-static radars are working like a bi-static radar. - A bi-static radar makes use of the forward scattering of the transmitted energy. -Mainly used for weather Radars -Some importance in military applications Z so called “ semi-active” missile control, example HAWK - multiple receiving sites are used to correlate target position.

Figure : two radar sets cooperate bi-statically: the second radar receives the returns of the first one.

Fig: HAWK bi-static Radar

SLAR travels forward in the flight direction with the nadir directly beneath the platform. - The microwave beam is transmitted obliquely at right angles to the direction of flight illuminating a swath. - The SLAR is a real aperture radar primarily. The azimuth resolution, Ra, is defined as : Ra= (H*λ)/(L*cosθ)
H is the height of the antenna, (height of the airplane) is the geometric length of the antenna, λ is the wavelength of the transmitted pulses, and θ is the incidence angle

Figure : Side-looking viewing geometry of imaging radar system.

Figure : Resolution cell variation.

-At all ranges the radar antenna measures the radial line of sight distance between the radar and each target on the surface. This is the slant range distance. - The ground range distance is the true horizontal distance along the ground corresponding to each point measured in slant range. - The cross-track resolution, Rr, is defined as: Rr =(c0 · tp )/(2sinθ) c0 is the speed of light tp is the pulse duration of the transmitter, and θ = incidence angle

 

Can detect air targets and determine their position, course, and speed in a relatively large area. The maximum range of Air-Defense Radar can exceed 300 miles, and the bearing coverage is a complete 360-degree circle. Usually divided into two categories, based on the amount of position information supplied: Only range and bearing information are referred to as two-dimensional, or 2D, radars & Radar sets that supply range, bearing, and height are called three-dimensional, or 3D, radars. used as early-warning devices because they can detect approaching enemy aircraft or missiles at great distances. Another function of the Air-Defense Radar is guiding combat air patrol (CAP) aircraft to a position suitable to intercept an enemy aircraft. Major Air-Defense Radar Applications are: -Long-range early warning (including airborne early warning, AEW) -Ballistic missile warning and acquisition -Height-finding -Ground-controlled interception (GCI)

Figure : Diagram of a typical 3D-Radar, a mix of vertical electronic beam steering and mechanically horizontal movement of a pencil-beam.


The following Air Traffic Control (ATC) surveillance, approach and landing radars are commonly used in Air Traffic Management (ATM): -en-route radar systems, -Air Surveillance Radar (ASR) systems, -Precision Approach Radar (PAR) systems, -surface movement radars, and -special weather radars.

 En-Route Radars -En-route radar systems operate in L- Band usually. These radar sets initially detect and determine the position, course, and speed of air targets in a relatively large area up to 250 nm.

Fig:SRE-M en-route radar

Air Surveillance Radar (ASR) -Airport Surveillance Radar (ASR) is an approach control radar used to detect and display an aircraft's position in the terminal area. These radar sets operate usually in E-Band, and are capable of reliably detecting and tracking aircraft at altitudes below 25,000 feet (7,620 meters) and within 40 to 60 nautical miles (75 to 110 km) of their airport.


Fig: Air surveillance Radar ASR 9

Precision Approach Radar (PAR) -The ground-controlled approach is a control mode in which an aircraft is able to land in bad weather. The pilot is guided by ground control using precision approach radar. The guidance information is obtained by the radar operator and passed to the aircraft by either voice radio or a computer link to the aircraft.


Fig: Precision Approach Radar(PAR) AN/FPN-36

 Surface Movement Radar (SMR) -The Surface Movement Radar (SMR) scans the airport surface to locate the positions of aircraft and ground vehicles and displays them for air traffic controllers in bad weather. Surface movement radars operate in J- to X- Band and use an extremely short pulse-width to provide an acceptable rangeresolution.

Fig: SMR

Specially weather-radar applications -Weather radar is very important for the air traffic management. There are weather-radars specially designed for the air traffic safety.


Fig: Special Weather- Radar