AIRBORNE WEATHER RADAR FOR WINDSHEAR WARNING

Period of Performance: 01/01/1987 - 12/31/1987

$49.9K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Sierra Nevada Corporation
444 Salomon Circle
Sparks, NV 89434
Firm POC

Abstract

NUMEROUS AIRCRAFT ACCIDENTS HAVE OCCURED DURING TAKEOFF AND LANDING DUE TO THE STRONG AND UNEXPECTED WINDS DIVERGING FROM A MICROBURST OUTFLOW. EXTENSIVE RESEARCH HAS INDICATEDTHAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO DETECT SUCH WINDS BY MEANS OF A DOPPLER WEATHER RADAR. A LOGICAL RADAR CANDIDATE IS THE UNIT CARRIED BY ALL AIR TRANSPORTS. A PROBLEM WITH THE USE OF SUCH INSTALLED RADARS IS THEIR LOWPRF (PULSE REPETITION RATE) AND THE ASSOCIATED ALIASING ASSOCIATED WITH A DIRECT MEASUREMENT OF WIND VELOCITY. AN INNOVATIVE APPROACH TO THIS PROBLEM IS TO MEASURE THE WIND VELOCITY GRADIENT, WHICH MEASUREMENT CAN UTILIZE A MUCH LOWER PRF (TEN TO ONE), SPECIFICALLY THE PRF EMPLOYED BY SUCH INSTALLED RADARS. IT IS INTENDED TO VERIFY THIS CONCEPT VIA ANALYSIS OF EXISTING WINDSHEAR WEATHER RADAR DATA. THIS VERIFICATION WOULD THEN POTENTIALLY PERMIT INSTALLED WEATHER RADARS, WITH AN AFFORDABLE ATTACHED DOPPLER PROCESSOR TO PROVIDE A WINDSHEAR WARNING. A PHASE II EFFORT WOULD FABRICATE SUCH A COMPLETE WARNING SYSTEM FORFIELD TESTING.