The ARC Radar Upgrade Package consists of the ARC digital receiver, the Radar Controller and Monitor, the Antenna Control Unit, the ARC-GUI control software, the TITAN/CIDD software, a transmitter and motors and gears, if necessary. ARC has revolutionized Doppler radar capabilities through its patented technology including the HiQ digital receiver and Antenna Control Unit (ACU). ARC also provides the NCAR-developed TITAN/CIDD radar product generation and display software, which has been refined through decades of research and operational use around the planet, for both standard and polarimetric radar products. The goal for ARC is to minimize cost while maximizing potential by redesigning and upgrading existing radars, resulting in a clean, compact and affordable solution for years of trouble-free weather radar operation. The new ARC digital processor has been successfully installed in radars around the planet in even the most remote and exposed environments.
ARC-HiQ Digital Receiver
ARC currently supports 2 receivers that are built in-house as well as receivers built by other manufacturers. We also provide down-converters in multiple frequency ranges. ARC started using the HiQ down-converter card,originally designed by NCAR, with proprietary interface software that conversed with the NCAR TITAN software suite and the ARC-GUI control suite of programs. This platform is still supported but is not suggested for new systems. A replacement IF digitizer and down-converter has been developed using a state-of-the-art, multi-channel, analog to digital converter card with an on-card FPGA for performing down-conversion of the IF data to baseband range-gate data. The same utilities are used to configure and monitor the performance of the receiver regardless of which digitizer card is used.
- Noise Power: -115 dBm typical
- Radar Noise Figure: 2.9 dB
- Dynamic range: 80 dB (Receiver noise dominated)
- Sensitivity @ 0dB SNR: -11 dBZ @ 50 km 1 μsec transmit pulse
- Digital IF processing
- Digital matched filter for maximum sensitivity and Inter-clutter visibility
- Dual-PRT capability for velocity extension
- Antenna position to 16 bit resolution.
- Fast update rates to motor controller (few msec).
- Programmable velocity and acceleration limits.
- Programmable trapezoidal acceleration profiles.
- Interactive tuning and plotting tools.
- Precision scan active flags sent to base data radar display.
- ARC software support for solar gain and antenna pattern measurements.
- ARC ACU software supports PPI sector, RHI, and Surveillance scanning, as well as sequences.
- Digitally stored and adjustable antenna offsets for positioning using solar alignment tools.
- Manual and automatic antenna operation either locally or remotely via the internet.
- Readily adaptable to a variety of syncro and encoder positioning systems.
- Readily adaptable to brush and brushless motors.
ARC Antenna Control Unit (ACU)
The ARC-ACU is fully configurable and is designed to interface with new and existing radar systems. The ACU allows for individual surveillance, PPI and RHI sector scans, as well as sequences of these scans, to be produced, edited and executed locally or remotely.
Remote monitoring of the radar antenna via Ethernet web cam can be directly accessed from the antenna control software main screen. Solar based angle position calibration and solar gain measurements are an integral part of the software for antenna gain calculations.
Years of experience in weather research have gone into the design to ensure that the ARC ACU is highly interactive and configurable for any weather radar application. ARC provides the NCAR-developed TITAN/CIDD radar product generation and display software, which has been refined through decades of research and operational use around the planet, for both standard and polarimetric radar products for operation with the ARC ACU.
HiQ is the product of decades of research experience and field deployments at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). It is a low-cost IF digitizer and down conversion card that lives on the PCI parallel bus. It provides a stage of analog down-conversion and bandwidth filtering so the receiver can be made to track a slowly varying IF frequency. Automatic Frequency Control (AFC) code in the ARC receiver control program can either adjust the local oscillator on the HiQ or it can adjust the frequency of the main system stable local oscillator (STALO) to track the frequency drift found in magnetrons.
The HiQ digital receiver was designed to be a stand-alone, cost-effective Doppler receiver upgrade for any commercial radar system. It performs the signal processing tasks necessary to generate a high quality data stream for computing radar products. The ARC HiQ provides a radar calibration software suitable for operational uses and research applications requiring accurate, quantitative radar measurements.