explain how radar helps air traffic controllers?
i need help with this science question
- 9 years agoFavorite Answer
Radar is a very useful tool for air traffic controllers (ATC). Besides the basic function of showing the physical location of an aircraft, the ATC has a plethora of information available to him/her. By regulation, all aircraft in the US are required to have a radar transponder installed (ultralight aircraft and light sport aircraft excepted). This transponder helps the ATC by reporting the aircraft's tail number or airline and flight number, compass heading and altitude.
When getting clearance to depart, each pilot is assigned a squawk code to which the transponder is set. When the ATC radar receives the code (the code is transmitted, or "squawked," to the radar receiver during each sweep), it knows which aircraft is assigned to it and reports to the ATC the physical and identity information, along with the aircraft's origin and destination airports. The ATC can also ask the pilot to set the squawk code and "ident" after takeoff if the aircraft is a private, single- or twin-engine craft and the pilot intends to fly strictly VFR after leaving the radar service area while staying away from controlled airspace; this causes the blip representing that aircraft to glow brighter on the radar screen for a short time to help the ATC locate the aircraft on the screen. The ident function is a carry-over from older military radar systems that used IFF radar (Identify Friend or Foe).
Another thing the radar will do is alert the ATC if there is a problem aboard the aircraft, such as a medical emergency, fire, or some other situation. Each of these scenarios utilizes a specific squawk code which, if set, will produce a bright blip and notification on the ATC's radar screen. Another squawk code will tell the ATC if the aircraft is flying VFR and that the pilot does not need ATC instructions or stays outside of a radar service area (Class D and G airspace and certain Class E airspace areas).Source(s): Associate degree in avionics; A&P licensed technician
- Anonymous9 years ago
It helps them see where all planes are in the sky. they can guide the pilots and tell them when to land when the air is less busy.