Radar station

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Precipitation radar Stø on Norway's Atlantic coast

A radar station is a building complex for operating a radar system , in particular as an air traffic control radar . Such systems are usually set up on mountain peaks or in an exposed location in a terrain in order to achieve the greatest possible range of the radar location .

The antenna systems of a large-capacity radar can be up to 20 m wide and are usually protected from the weather by a conspicuous, spherical radome (radome). Research and weather radar stations have smaller antennas.

The processing of the measurement data can take place in the station itself or - as with regional air traffic control - centrally for the entire national territory, which requires corresponding data connections.


Radar station on the Wasserkuppe , Hesse

A radar station usually includes:

  • The building in which the radar system is installed. The antenna can measure a few meters to almost 20 meters and work as a primary and secondary radar .
  • Weather protection for the antenna (the so-called radome)
  • Crew accommodation for operating and maintenance personnel
  • Telecommunication systems. Earth-based, but often satellite or directional radio
  • Electrical operating rooms
  • workshops
  • If necessary, emergency power generators and self-sufficient water supply
  • Bunker systems for military use
  • Bunker fire brigade for militarily important use

The periphery includes:

  • Access roads
  • Power connection
  • Water connection and sewage connection
  • Data line to the regional headquarters
  • if necessary, a protective fence around the area of ​​the station.

Larger radar stations in Germany

  • Regional air traffic control : The most important radar systems are operated by Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH (DFS). There are around 32 radar stations spread over the whole of Germany. The antennas are usually located on a radar tower and are protected by a large radome. The range is a few 100 km in each case and overlaps each other so that isolated failures cannot affect air traffic control.
  • Local airspace control: larger airports have their own Airport Surveillance Radar with a range of around 50–120 km, which controls approach and departure flights (ascent and descent).
  • Purely military radar stations for air defense and flight control
  • Radio traffic partly with radar: Some television towers
  • About 16 weather radars and some research and satellite stations .

Radar stations in Austria

  • Air traffic control: 2 civilian large-scale air traffic control radars (Upper Austria, Carinthia)
  • Close-range radars at airports, etc. a. Vienna, Linz, Salzburg (some radars have been (and are still) replaced by multilateration)
  • Military airspace control: 3 stations of the Federal Army with a very long range (Lower Austria, Salzburg, Carinthia), further local radar stations
  • Satellite station Graz-Lustbühel
  • Radomes of some weather services.

Radar stations in Switzerland