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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2011 > May > May 13

Re: Radar Detection Of UFOs

From: Peter Davenport <director.nul>
Date: Fri, 13 May 2011 06:37:06 -0700
Archived: Fri, 13 May 2011 13:28:57 -0400
Subject: Re: Radar Detection Of UFOs

>From: Martin Shough <parcellular.nul>
>To: <post.nul>
>Date: Thu, 12 May 2011 18:37:21 +0100
>Subject: Re: Radar Detection Of UFOs

>>From: Ralph Howard <rhjr.nul>
>>To: post.nul
>>Date: Thu, 12 May 2011 08:55:27 -0700 (PDT)
>>Subject: Radar Detection Of UFOs [was: SETI Summary]


>>Concerning radar detection, just an FYI for everyone's use... In
>>looking into the potential for use of NEXRAD weather radar data
>>in UFO sighting investigations, I recently found that there is a
>>"scientist and meteorite hobbyist", a Ph.D. fellow at the
>>Planetary Science Institute in Tucson AZ, who runs a
>>blog/website devoted to providing NEXRAD weather radar data as
>>a resource for finding meteorites. Additional quotes from Dr.
>>Marc Fries' blog:


>>"It turns out that Doppler weather radars are a valuable resource
>>for not only finding meteorites from fresh falls but also for
>>studying the dynamics of the fall itself. In the US, the NEXRAD
>>radar network operated by NOAA provides continuous coverage of
>>most of the US landmass. Any meteorites that fall here have to
>>fall through airspace that is monitored by NEXRAD, and when the
>>conditions are right we can spot them on the way down."

>Thanks, Ralph, very interesting. I'm surprised that NEXRAD is
>thought to have much of a role here, though, because coverage is
>so restricted.

>The NEXRAD uses a narrow 1-degree pencil beam and a selection of
>different scan algorithms to build up coverage in a series of 1-
>degree slices at a ponderously slow rate, between about 5 and 10
>_minutes_ depending on mode. This compares with a typical
>surveillance radar that fills the same scan volume in as many
>_seconds_. (Of course they aren't looking for primary targets
>like meteors, but you get the point). The most sensitive (clear
>air) NEXRAD mode only covers the sky up about 4 or 5 degrees
>elevation anyway, and the less-sensitive precip[itation modes
>still only go up to about 19 degrees and take 5 or 6 minutes to
>do it.

>So I should have thought that even with overlapping coverages the
>chances are very small of spotlighting a useful number of
>1-degree pieces of meteor trail so as to build up a track - when
>a typical trail is gone in seconds . And the wavelength is short
>, too - 10cm S-band - not ideal for ionisation returns, which are
>favoured at very long wavelengths.


>>... keeping up with this website makes a lot of
>>sense, because of the potential for NEXRAD recording something

>It is intriguing. I want to take a closer look. Thanks for the

>Martin Shough

Ralph and Martin,

Thank you both for your informed and edifying comments about the
NEXRAD radar system. I learned a great deal about that system
from what the two of you have written above.

The principal shortcoming of that type of "active" radar for
detecting short-lived, and high-velocity, targets is as Martin
describes... the system might not detect them at all. Therein
lies the advantage of using a "passive" radar system, which
detects targets in all directions simultaneously, and does so on
a virtually continuous basis. An "active" radar radiates a thin
"pencil" of electromagnetic radiation, which "sweeps" a target
intermittently, which can be defeated easily; a "passive" system
radiates in all directions, and does so as long as the signal of
choice is being transmitted. For details of such a system, I
would recommend a search of the web for the "Naval Space
Surveillance System," which uses a 742,000 watt "passive"
system, based in Lake Kickapoo, Texas.

I believe that the "passive" system I describe in my paper
proposes a system that sidesteps the shortcomings of an "active"
system, for reasons that Martin correctly identifies in his
comments above.

I am just leaving for the McMinnville, Oregon, conference, but
will respond to any comments, upon my return.


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