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Air Traffic Control Radar Beacon System

(ATC RBS)
The antenna system of a typical ground radar. The ladder-like top section is the
SSR directional antenna, and the remainder of the assembly makes up the PSR
antenna
In the name of ALLAH, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Copyright Pakistan International Airlines Training Center Karachi
Introduction
• The air traffic control radar beacon system (ATCRBS) is
a system used in air traffic control (ATC) to enhance
surveillance radar monitoring and separation of air
traffic.
• ATCRBS assists ATC surveillance radars by acquiring
information about the aircraft being monitored, and
providing this information to the radar controllers.
• The controllers can use the information to identify
radar returns from aircraft (known as targets) and to
distinguish those returns from ground clutter.
Primary Surveillance Radar
• Primary Surveillance Radar (PSR)
– The target is not actively involved.
– Displays the range, bearing on a plan position
indicator (PPI) display on the ground.
– A lot of energy has to be transmitted.
– Clutter will be displayed.
– Individual aircraft could not be displayed.
– Altitude could not be calculated.
– A data link could not be set up.

Secondary Surveillance Radar
• Secondary Surveillance Radar (SSR)
– The target is actively involved (airborne
transponders/Ground interrogators).
– Displays the range, bearing on a plan position
indicator (PPI) display on the ground.
– Less energy has to be transmitted.
– Clutter will be eliminated.
– Individual aircraft could be displayed & Identified
(Mode-A).
– Altitude can be communicated and displayed.
– A data link can be set up.

ATCRBS BLOCK DIAGRAM
P
S
R
Timing Tx
Display Rx
Rx
Tx Coding
Airborne transponder
Ground Interrogator
The Modes
• Mode-A- Identification of aircraft.
• Mode-B-Not used.
• Mode-C-Altitude reporting (Barometric
altitude).
• Mode-D. Not used.
• Mode-S. Selective call; Used for data link
creation.
How it works
Interrogation-1030 MHz
Reply-1090 MHz.
The Side Lobe Problem
ground
station
aircraft 1 (should reply)
aircraft 3 (should NOT reply)
aircraft 2 (should NOT reply)
Side Lobe Suppression
P2
- Side lobe suppression-send another
pulse from an omni-directional antenna
co-located with the main one.
-
ground
station
aircraft 1
aircraft 2
aircraft 3
P1 P2
A2
P2 P1
A1
P1-P2>=9 db
P2>P1
Interrogation Formats-Modes-A+C
8 micro sec
2 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
P 1
P 2
P 3
Mode-A
21 micro sec
2 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
P 1
P 2
P 3
Mode-C
8/21 micro sec
2 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
P 1
P 2
P 3
Modes-A+C
All Call
P 4
0.8 micro sec
2 micro sec
Interrogation Formats-Mode-S
8/21 micro sec
2 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
0.8 micro sec
P 1
P 2
P 3
Modes-A+C+S
All Call
P 4
1.6 micro sec
2 micro sec
3.75 micro sec
2 micro sec
P 1
P 3
1.26 micro sec
P 2
P 5
Sync Phase Reversal
Mode-S data word starts-DBPSK
Differential Binary Phase Shift Keying
(DBPSK)
Data
0 1 1 1 0 0 0
+5 V
0 V
DBPSK or Manchester encoding
The ATC RBS (A +C) Replies
F1 C1 A1 C2 A2 C4 A4 X B1 D1 B2 D2 B4 D4 F2 SPI
0.45 micro sec
1.45 micro sec
20.3 micro sec
2.9 micro sec
4.35 micro sec
•F1 , F2 are framing pulses.
•Special Position Indicator (SPI) pulse only comes in when the ident P/B on the
ATC control panel is pressed.
•The ident codes are binary codes.
•Special codes are : 7500(hijack), 7600 (Radio failure), 7700(SOS)and their
complements.
•Total number of combinations 8 raised to the power 4 = 4096.
Exercise
• The code 0077 is selected on the ATC Control
panel:
– What does it mean?
– Draw the bit pattern for this code and give the
number of 1 s in each pattern:
• With SPI.
• Without SPI.
Solution
F1 C1 A1 C2 A2 C4 A4 X B1 D1 B2 D2 B4 D4 F2 SPI
0.45 micro sec
1.45 micro sec
20.3 micro sec
2.9 micro sec
4.35 micro sec
Altitude Encoding
• Uses Gray code.

0: 0000
1: 0001
2: 0011
3: 0010
4: 0110
5: 0111
6: 0101
7: 0100
8: 1100
9: 1101
A: 1111
B: 1110
C: 1010
D: 1001
E: 1000

Mode-S Replies
8 micro sec-preamble
4.5 micro sec
Reply format-Pulse
Position Modulation
(PPM)
A-310-300 ATC Mode-S Installation
Control
Panel
MODE-S
Transponder ATC
# 1
MODE-S
Transponder ATC #
2
DME 1 TCAS DME 2
Address
Coding
Address
Coding
FMC # 1
TCAS
ADC # 1
FMC # 2
ADC # 2
Air/ground
relay# 1
Air/ground
relay# 2
Flt ID
Baro-Altitude
Suppression Pulse -30 micro sec
c
c
c
c c
Top Antenna Sys 1
Top Antenna Sys 2
Bot Antenna Sys 1
Bot Antenna Sys 2
Back Plug pin
programmed
Calculation Of Mode-S Address And Back Pin
programming
• Covered in ICAO Annex 10, Vol-III, Part-I, Chapter-9.
• Total Mode-S Address = 24 bits.
– State allocation block =4-14 bits (Pakistan=9 bits).
– By state registration authority =20-10 bits.
• Pakistan’s code -0111 01 100.
• Exercise : develop the Mode-S Address for the registration: AP-BCA.
A : 00001 G: 00111 M : 01101 S: 10011 Y: 11001
B: 00010 H : 01000 N: 01110 T: 10100 Z: 11010
C: 00011 I : 01001 O: 01111 U: 10101
D: 00100 J: 01010 P: 10000 V: 10110
E: 00101 K : 01011 Q: 10001 W: 10111
F: 00110 L : 01100 R: 10010 X: 11000
Solution
• Pakistan’s code -0111 01 100.
• Exercise : develop the Mode-S Address for the registration: AP-BCA.
– B: 00010.
– C: 00011.
– A : 00001.
– Complete Address: 0111 01 100 00010 00011 00001
– Now pin program on the back plug as per AMM.
A : 00001 G: 00111 M : 01101 S: 10011 Y: 11001
B: 00010 H : 01000 N: 01110 T: 10100 Z: 11010
C: 00011 I : 01001 O: 01111 U: 10101
D: 00100 J: 01010 P: 10000 V: 10110
E: 00101 K : 01011 Q: 10001 W: 10111
F: 00110 L : 01100 R: 10010 X: 11000
Recap
• What is the function of ATC RBS?
• How does the ATC RBS work?
• What its’ interrogation and reply frequencies?
• Which band does it lie in & what precaution is taken to ensure that
mutual interference does not result when one system is
transmitting?
• What is Side Lobe Suppression (SLS)?
• What are the interrogation and reply modes in Modes-A & C and
how are they differentiated?
• What is Mode-S and how is it ensured that only a Mode-S equipped
station responds to a Mode-S interrogation?
• How is “ident” communicated via Mode-A?
• How is Altitude reported via Mode-C?
• What is the format of a Mode-S address and how is it developed
and incorporated on the Mode-S transponder on the aircraft?