Secondary Radar Systems

Secondary Radar Systems

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Radar is an acronym for radio detection and ranging. Even though most of us assume radar to be an echoing system, radio detection and ranging can be achieved by another means. A radar can also be an answer-back system, in which an interrogator transmits a signal to all aircraft equipped with transponders. On receipt of the interrogation, the transponder transmits a coded reply at a frequency differing from the interrogator's. To differentiate between the answer-back systems and the conventional echoing radars, the latter are called primary radars and the former are called secondary radars. Secondary radar systems have been built both with ground interrogators for aircraft transponders and with aircraft interrogators for ground or shipboard transponders.

Chapter Contents:

  • General
  • Secondary Radar is Essential Safety Equipment
  • Advantages and Disadvantages of Secondary Radar
  • Dangers in Excessive Reliance
  • Evolution of the Technology
  • The First Generation
  • The Second Generation
  • The Third Generation
  • The Fourth Generation
  • ARTS Data Processing
  • Data Processing at an ARTCC
  • Data Utilization and Processing
  • Code Validation
  • The Fifth Generation
  • ARTCRBS Interrogator Basics
  • Basic ATCRBS Interrogator Principle
  • Detection Probability
  • Interrogation
  • Challenge/Interrogation Modes
  • Evolution of the Challenge/Interrogation
  • Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), MSSR, and Mode S
  • Mode 4 Challenge
  • Mode 4 Reply
  • MSSR Basic Interrogator-Receiver Concepts
  • General
  • Basic Concepts
  • Transmitter
  • Mode S Interrogation
  • All Call
  • Roll Call
  • Uplink P6 Contents
  • Receipt by the Transponder
  • P5 Pulse/Burst
  • ATCRBS Mode Interlace
  • Interlace with Mode S
  • Interlace Pattern Determined by Antenna Rotation Rate
  • Interlace versus Azimuth
  • Reply Codes
  • Conventional ATCRBS Reply Codes
  • Original A-B Code Train
  • 'Discrete Codes'
  • Octal Numbering
  • Civil and Military Idents
  • Mode S Reply Codes
  • Altitude Codes
  • Adjusting for Barometric Pressure
  • Matching the Display of Primary and Secondary Radar
  • Timing Relationships
  • Radar Mile Remains 12.3552 μs
  • Real-Time P3-to-'Main Bang' Timing Relationship
  • Timing Error Alarms
  • Measuring 'Reinforcement Rate'
  • The Interrogator Transmitter and Antenna System
  • Side-Lobe Suppression (SLS) and Improved
  • Side-Lobe Suppression (ISLS)
  • SLS and MSSR
  • Receive Side-Lobe Suppression (RSLS)
  • ATCBI-3 Hardware Transmitter Block Diagram
  • The Receiver
  • Code Train Data Processing
  • Decoders
  • Non-common Decoders
  • Fourth-Generation Processing
  • Fourth-Generation Digital Data Processing
  • Delay Lines Replaced by Shift Registers
  • Multiple Code Extractors
  • Identifying the Interrogation Mode and Azimuth
  • More about the Beacon Azimuth Sliding Window
  • Final Data Display
  • Beacon Reply and Mode Pair Reconstitution
  • Interaction between Code Trains
  • Interference and FRUIT
  • Range Ambiguities (Second-Time Replies)
  • Test Equipment
  • Special Test Equipment
  • Graphic User Interfaces (GUIs)
  • Test Equipment Evolution
  • Sliding-Window Detection
  • Deficiencies in the Beacon Azimuth Sliding Window
  • Monopulse Transponder Detection
  • History of Dipole Arrays
  • Phasing the Dipoles (or Slots)
  • Beam Control by Frequency Agility
  • Fire-Control Secondary Radar
  • Monopulse by Amplitude
  • FAA Monopulse Antennas
  • LVA Array
  • Beacon Monopulse Operation
  • General
  • Receiver Side-Lobe Suppression
  • Rotational Rate
  • An MSSR Receiver and Processing System
  • Phase Detector
  • Off-Boresight Calculation
  • Monopulse by Phase Difference or Doppler (Interferometry)
  • Multiple Facilities and Coordination
  • Review Questions
  • Answers to Review Questions

Inspec keywords: aircraft; transponders; airborne radar

Other keywords: shipboard transponders; secondary radar systems; ground interrogators; echoing radars; radio detection and ranging; aircraft transponders; answer-back system; primary radar system

Subjects: Radar equipment, systems and applications

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