Measurement of antenna patterns for oceanographic radars using aerial drones

Measurement of antenna patterns for oceanographic radars using aerial drones AbstractA new method is described employing small drone aircraft for antenna pattern measurements (APMs) of high frequency (HF) oceanographic radars used for observing ocean surface currents. Previous studies have shown that accurate surface current measurements using HF radar require APMs. The APMs provide directional calibration of the receive antennas for direction-finding radars. In the absence of APMs so-called “ideal” antenna patterns are assumed and these can differ substantially from measured patterns. Typically APMs are obtained using small research vessels carrying radio signal sources or transponders in circular arcs around individual radar sites. This procedure is expensive because it requires sea-going technicians, a vessel, and other equipment necessary to support small boat operations. Furthermore adverse sea conditions and obstacles in the water can limit the ability of small vessels to conduct APMs. In contrast, it is shown that drone aircraft can successfully conduct APMs at much lower cost and in a broader range of sea states with comparable accuracy. Drone-based patterns can extend farther shoreward since they are not affected by the surf zone and thereby expand the range of bearings over which APMs are determined. This simplified process for obtaining APMs can lead to more frequent calibrations and improved surface current measurements. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology American Meteorological Society

Measurement of antenna patterns for oceanographic radars using aerial drones

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Publisher
American Meteorological Society
Copyright
Copyright © American Meteorological Society
ISSN
1520-0426
eISSN
1520-0426
D.O.I.
10.1175/JTECH-D-16-0180.1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractA new method is described employing small drone aircraft for antenna pattern measurements (APMs) of high frequency (HF) oceanographic radars used for observing ocean surface currents. Previous studies have shown that accurate surface current measurements using HF radar require APMs. The APMs provide directional calibration of the receive antennas for direction-finding radars. In the absence of APMs so-called “ideal” antenna patterns are assumed and these can differ substantially from measured patterns. Typically APMs are obtained using small research vessels carrying radio signal sources or transponders in circular arcs around individual radar sites. This procedure is expensive because it requires sea-going technicians, a vessel, and other equipment necessary to support small boat operations. Furthermore adverse sea conditions and obstacles in the water can limit the ability of small vessels to conduct APMs. In contrast, it is shown that drone aircraft can successfully conduct APMs at much lower cost and in a broader range of sea states with comparable accuracy. Drone-based patterns can extend farther shoreward since they are not affected by the surf zone and thereby expand the range of bearings over which APMs are determined. This simplified process for obtaining APMs can lead to more frequent calibrations and improved surface current measurements.

Journal

Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic TechnologyAmerican Meteorological Society

Published: Mar 23, 2017

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