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Radar Replacement

Old 2nd Dec 2010, 19:30
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Radar Replacement

Apologies if this is in the wrong forum.

My local airport has announced they are replacing their are looking to replace their radar system, which was installed in 1995.

Got me thinking, do radar systems have a typical 'working life'? Is 15 years old about right for replacement with a newer system?
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 20:42
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Go on, which airport? I think that there is a requirement to introduce mode-S before 2012, which will mean new kit is needed if you want to continue to use your SSR.
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 21:27
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Ronaldsway, Isle of Man.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 12:10
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Radar systems life expectancy

Accepted opinion is 15 years, but technology has advanced significantly in the last 10 years, leading to the introduction of non-traditional forms of airspace surveillance systems, i.e. ADS-B and multilateration.
Multilateration utilises data from Mode S transponders (and sometimes ADS-B) received in a ground based network of transceivers to triangulate aircraft position and present label data on present generation displays. Multilateration can be used in both airport and en-route (WAN) environments. NATS uses WAN multilateration in the North Sea to provide radar surveillance of helo operations.
At the airport level, NATS has selected a multistatic dependent surveillance (MDS) solution for ground surveillance at London Stansted Airport. MDS will provide full coverage of the airport’s runway, taxiway and stand areas to enhance the safe and efficient movement of aircraft on the ground. NATS has selected MDS for ground surveillance as a result of its successful performance at London Heathrow and Gatwick airports.
I believe that the Ronaldsway management has recently selected a Selex multilateration solution for the airport.
Hope it works.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 20:13
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Ronaldsway uses a Watchman radar, which is good enough for 25 years, (1985-Exeter) but spares are going to be difficult to come by due to obsolesence. The radar's being replaced will be used to support the rest for years to come, so it's a case of who's going to hang in there!
The grapevine has told me that they are going multilat route which isn't yet approved yet, I may be wrong. For the cost of a new primary radar and civils, etc I'd stick on an SSR as the total cost isn't much greater and you know it works.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 20:21
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NATS En Route radars are designed and commissioned for a 15 year life. I'm not sure where the 15 years figure comes from, but it seems to fit quite well with technology and needs for operational changes.

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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 21:03
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15 years

15 years is the 'typical' life of any ATM system.

Not sure why but I think it's a good way of saying to senior management, who tend to be over 50, we won't need to replace this till you've retired!
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