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NADIR Planar Scanner

The NADIR Planar Scanner System is an indoor-outdoor system focused on the static measurement of components such as antennas and outfitting.

NADIR Planar Scanner performs:

  • Radar Cross Section;
  • High Resolution Range profiles;
  • ISAR Imaging.

The IDS Near Field RCS Measurement System is an effective tool targeting the design cycle of platforms or components, the evaluation of near field RCS and radar imaging, the measurement of sensitivity compliant with stealth platform requirements, measurements in clutter-controlled environment with hardware high stability and speed.

About NADIR Planar Scanner:

NADIR Planar Scanner is a cost effective, flexible and transportable measurement system which provides accurate radar cross section (RCS) assessments. Measurements can be performed indoors in anechoic, partial anechoic or non-anechoic environments or outdoors in suitable test areas free of large obstacles. NADIR PS is a near field measurement system positioned using a planar scanner which acquires 2D/3D synthetic aperture radar (SAR) diagnostic radar images of the target and converts them to undistorted far field like radar images. The measurement procedure has been extensively validated and provides sensitivity and accuracy comparable to traditional compact and far field ranges.

Operation & Performance

  • Can be used indoors or outdoors to measure components and scale models depending on the size of the component and the measurement sites available
  • Measurement sensitivity compliant with stealth platform requirements
  • Measurements are performed at near field ranges (dependent on target size and required sensitivity). The resultant near field measurements are converted to far field using spherical wave compensation
  • High speed and stable hardware can provide accurate and reliable RCS measurements in little time, from a few minutes for small components and scale models up to 90 minutes for the largest targets
  • SAR measurements enable environmental clutter, multipath contributions and target supports to be identified and located allowing them to be filtered out leaving useful target returns and scattering centers in the resulting radar image
  • Total synergy and compatibility with IDS’s Ship EDF-RCS prediction tools. Together they are effective aids in the design cycle of naval platforms

Composition - System Breakdown

NADIR consists of three modules which are transportable by a single truck and trailer:

  • RF and Antennas - consisting of a vector network analyzer (VNA) to generate and acquire RF signals and a specialized radar head including sets of antennas for different bandwidths.
  • Antenna positioner - a 2D wide planar scanner to position the TX/RX in a planar surface in horizontal and vertical directions.
  • Target positioner - a low RCS support and rotational positioner.
  • Acquisition control software - for hardware control, real time configuration and data storage.
  • Post-processing software - for image generation and RCS estimation.
  • Measurements in non anechoic environments;
  • Operational Frequency Band: 8-18 GHz;
  • Diagnostic analysis of the main scattering centers (hot spots) of a target;
  • Background vector subtraction spatial filtering in the radar image.


As NADIR PS is configurable in regards to frequency range and planar scanner dimensions, the following specifications are given as an example:

Measurement System Capabilities
Frequency Range 1 – 40 GHz coherent
TX/RX Polarization HH, VV, HV, VH (one at a time)
Measurement Range From a few meters up to hundreds of meters
Resolution (Range and Cross-Range) Down to 5 cm depending on frequency band and scan length
RF Performance
Waveform (VNA) Stepped LFMCW with PRF agility
System Noise Figure 10 dB @ RX port
NERCS (Noise Equivalent RCS, or minimum detectable RCS at the target distance) -50 dBsm @ 35m in the Ku and Ka frequency bands
-60 dBsm @ 35m in L, S, C and X frequency bands
Transmit Power up to 40 dBm
Minimum measurable RCS with 20 dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) -35 dBsm @ 35m, with about ±1 dB accuracy with respect to receiver noise interference signal
Pulse Operation
Pulse Repetition Frequency (PRF) Up to 50 MHz
Range Gate Pulse Width 5 ns – 80 μs at 5ns steps