background image

6/17/21 

Pilot/Controller Glossary 

RADAR

  A device that provides information on 

range, azimuth, and/or elevation of objects by 
measuring the time interval between transmission 
and reception of directional radio pulses and 
correlating the angular orientation of the radiated 
antenna beam or beams in azimuth and/or elevation. 

a. 

Primary Radar

 A radar system in which a 

minute portion of a radio pulse transmitted from a site 
is reflected by an object and then received back at that 
site for processing and display at an air traffic control 
facility. 

b. 

Secondary Radar/Radar Beacon (ATCRBS)

 A 

radar system in which the object to be detected is 
fitted with cooperative equipment in the form of a 
radio receiver/transmitter (transponder). Radar 
pulses transmitted from the searching transmitter/re-
ceiver (interrogator) site are received in the 
cooperative equipment and used to trigger a 
distinctive transmission from the transponder. This 
reply transmission, rather than a reflected signal, is 
then received back at the transmitter/receiver site for 
processing and display at an air traffic control facility. 

(See COOPERATIVE SURVEILLANCE.) 
(See INTERROGATOR.) 

(See NON

COOPERATIVE SURVEILLANCE.) 

(See TRANSPONDER.) 

(See ICAO term RADAR.) 
(Refer to AIM.) 

RADAR [ICAO]

 A radio detection device which 

provides information on range, azimuth and/or 
elevation of objects. 

a. 

Primary Radar

 Radar system which uses 

reflected radio signals. 

b. 

Secondary Radar

 Radar system wherein a 

radio signal transmitted from a radar station initiates 
the transmission of a radio signal from another 
station. 

RADAR ADVISORY

 The provision of advice and 

information based on radar observations. 

(See ADVISORY SERVICE.) 

RADAR ALTIMETER

 

(See RADIO ALTIMETER.) 

RADAR APPROACH

 An instrument approach 

procedure which utilizes Precision Approach Radar 
(PAR) or Airport Surveillance Radar (ASR). 

(See AIRPORT SURVEILLANCE RADAR.) 
(See INSTRUMENT APPROACH 

PROCEDURE.) 

(See PRECISION APPROACH RADAR.) 
(See SURVEILLANCE APPROACH.) 
(See ICAO term RADAR APPROACH.) 
(Refer to AIM.) 

RADAR APPROACH [ICAO]

 An approach, 

executed by an aircraft, under the direction of a radar 
controller. 

RADAR APPROACH CONTROL FACILITY

 A 

terminal ATC facility that uses radar and nonradar 
capabilities to provide approach control services to 
aircraft arriving, departing, or transiting airspace 
controlled by the facility. 

(See APPROACH CONTROL SERVICE.) 

a. 

Provides radar ATC services to aircraft 

operating in the vicinity of one or more civil and/or 
military airports in a terminal area. The facility may 
provide services of a ground controlled approach 
(GCA); i.e., ASR and PAR approaches. A radar 
approach control facility may be operated by FAA, 
USAF, US Army, USN, USMC, or jointly by FAA 
and a military service. Specific facility nomencla-
tures are used for administrative purposes only and 
are related to the physical location of the facility and 
the operating service generally as follows: 

1. 

Army Radar Approach Control (ARAC) 

(US Army). 

2. 

Radar Air Traffic Control Facility (RATCF) 

(USN/FAA and USMC/FAA). 

3. 

Radar Approach Control (RAPCON) 

(USAF/FAA, USN/FAA, and USMC/FAA). 

4. 

Terminal Radar Approach Control 

(TRACON) (FAA). 

5. 

Airport Traffic Control Tower (ATCT) 

(FAA). (Only those towers delegated approach 
control authority.) 

RADAR ARRIVAL

 An aircraft arriving at an 

airport served by a radar facility and in radar contact 
with the facility. 

(See NONRADAR.) 

PCG R