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HENSOLDT’s Twinvis passive radar system has been tested during a comprehensive measurement campaign for its air traffic control capabilities. As part of the campaign a passive radar sensor cluster was installed at four sites in South Germany, from which air traffic above this region could be monitored and tracked in real time. This showed that passive radar systems can track aircraft with sufficient precision in order to be used for air traffic control. The sensors were positioned in Nuremberg, Roth, Erding and Ulm, while the data was processed centrally at HENSOLDT’s Ulm site.

Working as mere receivers which don’t emit any radiation, passive radar systems detect aircraft by analysing the signals that they reflect from existing third-party emissions. The Twinvis system excels with a comprehensive overview of the airspace covered, which is obtained by simultaneously analysing a large number of frequency bands. For example, up to 16 FM transmitters (analogue radio) plus 5 frequencies used by several DAB and DAB+ transmitters (digital radio) as well as DVB-T and DVB-T2 (digital, terrestrial television) can be simultaneously analysed for the first time. Furthermore, a new generation of software provides unprecedented performance in terms of range and precision of detection.

Twinvis has now shown this capability in this latest test. Two Twinvis demonstrators have already been delivered to potential customers in Europe.

Dorothee Frank