Tracking systems produce constant aircraft position information, and the antenna position is part of this information. Antenna error signals are used to create feedback as part of a RADAR system that can track aircraft.
The horizontal signal and the vertical signal created from antenna RF samples are called angle errors. These angle error signals indicate the angular distance between the center of the antenna beam and the position of the aircraft within the antenna beam.
For a mechanically steered antenna, the horizontal signal and vertical signal are used to create a drive signal that creates torque for two antenna positioning motors. One motor moves the antenna left/right. The other motor drives the antenna up/down. The result is to move the antenna position so that the center of the antenna beam remains aimed directly at the aircraft even when the aircraft is moving perpendicular to the antenna beam.
For a track while scan radar, position and velocity is maintained for multiple aircraft. The last position of the aircraft is coasted using the velocity, and that information is used to direct a beam of energy toward the aircraft. The monopulse angle error information that is received is used to adjust the position and velocity data for the aircraft. This is a common mode with phased array radar systems.
Amplitude-Comparison Monopulse provides an explanation of the antenna signals involved in this process.
Other articles related to "antenna positioning, antennas, antenna":
... Conical scan and monopulse antennas are susceptible to interference from weather phenomenon and stationary objects ... interference can produce feedback signals that move the antenna beam away from the aircraft ... This can produce an unreliable antenna position when the antenna is aimed too near the ground or too near to heavy weather ...
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