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For worldwide better identification of aircraft by radar it is a milestone to equip aircraft with transponder Mode "S", which is able to transmit not only the assigned code ( squawk ) and flight level, but also the aircrafts registration, category and flight identification (callsign). Mode "S"-transponders with integrated ADS-B modul, served by GPS, can even transmit actual position, heading and speed data.
The undirected transmission of position data enables a simple system to display the moving aircrafts with their flightdata ( independent of a special radar detector ! ) realtime on a PC-Screen: A short antenna catches the transponder-signals as input for a small lightweight box with high sophisticated interior connected via USB to a home-based PC or Laptop. The software for this fascinating simple and extremely inexpensive "mini-radar" is part of the basic package and can be installed on each Windows-PC. The system is already in use thousands of times and will be unsurpassed for a long time because of its stragegic orientation. The possible extensions of this system depend only on the further development of the already very efficient PC-Software.
Movements of airliners and also smaller aircrafts with their tracks and additional informations can be observed worldwide at any place. Therefore the mini-radar system can be very helpful for air rescue services, aircraft maintainance and business flights services, aero-clubs and flight training schools. Considering the future of the fast increasing aircrafts-scenery equipped with Mode "S" also smaller airfields can get a better view of the movements in their regional airspace. It offers the possibility to give better navigational assistance or information. The range of "miniradar" depends only on the output-power of the aircraft-transponder, the actual altitude of the plane and the relative position of the receiving antenna (additional amplification is possible) and will be from about 50 - 100 km up to more than 400 km.
The basic software of the system mostly displays only arcs of radar distance and some navigational points on the PC-screen. By adding actual background-data like airspaces, airfields and navigational aids including reporting points for IFR and VFR or other aviation categories the finally configured Map-display looks very impressive.
Features for zooming in on an airport chart with its runways and taxiways are included and additionally the radar center point can be moved to any worldwide position. Furthermore even the radar-center can be set onto one of the moving aircraft - but there is no need to fly with that !
This web-site offers the proper data for your individual configuration of the "radar"-background on the PC-screen (quarterly updates are available).