Image Number 4 for United States Patent #7570194.
A system able to locate and identify aircraft and vehicles based on the reception and processing, with novel means and methods, of signals emitted by the transponder of the secondary surveillance radar, shortly SSR. The system has a number of fixed stations distributed in the area of interest, e.g. in the airport area; any signal (the well known SSR reply/squitter) transmitted by the on-board transponder is received by four or more stations and the measurement of three or more differences of times of arrival (TOA) permits the reconstruction of the position of the transponder in spite of the fact that the transmission time is unknown. Suitable algorithms based on optimal estimation enhance both the accuracy of TOA measurements and the accuracy of the reconstructed position. The effects of possible overlapping of signal in time are avoided or mitigated by multiple source separation techniques based on least squares algebraic processing.