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Microburst detection with airport surveillance radars

Published in:
34th Ann. Air Traffic Control Associsation., 30 October 1989 - 2 November 1989, pp. 514-522.

Summary

With the advent of fully digital signal processing for new airport surveillance radars (ASR-9), terminal air traffic control displays will be largely free of clutter from precipitation and ground scatterers [1,2]. Early acceptance testing of the ASR-9, however, indicated that working air traffic controllers actually made considerable use of the weather echo information on their displays. To reinsert weather data in a non-interfering manner, the ASR-9's signal processor was augmented with a dedicated channel for processing and displaying six quantitative levels of precipitation reflectivity (i.e. rain rate) [2,3]. This processor does not utilize tile radar's coherency, other than for Doppler filtering of ground clutter echoes. In this paper, we describe processing techniques that would allow airport surveillance radars to extend their weather measurement capability to the detection of microburst-generated low altitude wind shear. The two principal technical challenges are the development of (i) signal processing to suppress ground clutter and estimate the near surface radial wind component in each radar resolution cell; (ii) image processing to automatically detect hazardous shear in the resulting velocity field. The techniques have been evaluated extensively using simulated weather signals and measurements from an experimental airport surveillance radar in the southeastern United States. Overall our analysis indicates that microbursts accompanied by rain at the surface -- the predominant safety hazard in many parts of the U.S. --could be detected with high confidence using a suitably modified ASR. In the following section we describe briefly the background and potential operational role of an ASR-based wind shear detection system. We then discuss the primary technical issues for achieving this capability and our evaluations of processing methods that address these issues.
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Summary

With the advent of fully digital signal processing for new airport surveillance radars (ASR-9), terminal air traffic control displays will be largely free of clutter from precipitation and ground scatterers [1,2]. Early acceptance testing of the ASR-9, however, indicated that working air traffic controllers actually made considerable use of the...

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Advances in primary-radar technology

Published in:
Lincoln Laboratory Journal, Vol. 2, No. 3, Fall 1989, pp. 363-380.

Summary

Current primary radars have difficulty detecting aircraft when ground clutter, rain, or birds interfere. To overcome such interference, the Moving Target Detector (MTD) uses adaptive digital signal and data processing techniques. MTD has provided the foundation for a new generation of primary radars called Airport Surveillance Radar-9 (ASR-9). In addition to achieving near-optimal target-detection performance, ASR-9 also provides timely weather information. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is installing ASR- 9 systems at more than 100 airports across the United States.
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Summary

Current primary radars have difficulty detecting aircraft when ground clutter, rain, or birds interfere. To overcome such interference, the Moving Target Detector (MTD) uses adaptive digital signal and data processing techniques. MTD has provided the foundation for a new generation of primary radars called Airport Surveillance Radar-9 (ASR-9). In addition...

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Evaluation of the ASR-9 weather reflectivity product

Author:
Published in:
Proc. Second Int. Conf. on the Aviation Weather System, 19-21 June 1985, pp. 196-202.

Summary

The ASR-9 is a modern airport surveillance radar (ASR) under procurement by the United States Federal Aviation Agency. The radar operates at S-band, providing range-azimuth position information on aircraft targets within a 111-km radius. A fully-coherent klystron amplifier, large dynamic range and digital signal processing enable high integrity target processing and display under condition of ground clutter, weather, angel clutter, RF interference and ground vehicular traffic. To aid controllers in the identification of hazardous weather conditions, the processor will also generate two- or six-level weather reflectivity contours for display at the terminal radar control center and (potentially) remote sites. In this paper, we present an overview of the ASR-9 and its weather processor, emphasizing those features that raise issues with respect to the utility of the weather reflectivity product in an air-traffic control environment. We then describe a simulation procedure that utilizes pencil-beam Doppler weather radar data and ground clutter measurements to preview the ASR-9 product and assess the effects of the radar's configuration on the weather intensity reports. Examples of the simulated weather reports are used to illustrate" (a) partial beamfilling die to the fan-shaped surveillance antenna pattern; (b) attenuation of low velocity weather by the clutter filters' (c) the effects of the spatial filters used in weather processing.
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Summary

The ASR-9 is a modern airport surveillance radar (ASR) under procurement by the United States Federal Aviation Agency. The radar operates at S-band, providing range-azimuth position information on aircraft targets within a 111-km radius. A fully-coherent klystron amplifier, large dynamic range and digital signal processing enable high integrity target processing...

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Evaluation of the MTD in a high-clutter environment

Author:
Published in:
IEEE 1980 Int. Radar Conf., 28-30 April 1980, Arlington, VA, pp. 219-224.

Summary

The MTD (Moving Target Detector) is an automated radar signal and data processing system designed to improve the performance of air surveillance radars in various forms of clutter while providing a low output false alarm rate. This paper briefly describes the architecture of the MTD processor and presents the results of a field evaluation of the system using the ASR-7 terminal radar at Burlington, Vermont.
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Summary

The MTD (Moving Target Detector) is an automated radar signal and data processing system designed to improve the performance of air surveillance radars in various forms of clutter while providing a low output false alarm rate. This paper briefly describes the architecture of the MTD processor and presents the results...

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