The Air Force’s monitoring and warning system currently consists of long-range surveillance radars and a monitoring and warning centre. The centre receives data from all the radars and produces a joint military air picture of Norway, which is used daily by the military leadership for the execution of operations.
The challenge is that the ages and functionalities of the radars vary. Some are relatively new and advanced, while others are in the process of being replaced with newer versions. In order to ascertain the quality of the produced air picture at all times, the project is developing methods to gauge the quality of the air picture production and develop software to log and report the performance of the entire monitoring and warning system.
An example of this is the development of a nationwide ADS-B reference system. A common problem when compiling multiple sensors, in this case radars, is that the measurements are not made within the same reference framework. In practice, this entails that minor discrepancies may occur, which means that the compilation of data can be difficult.
This is largely resolved with the development of a nationwide ADS-B reference system.
ADS-B stands for Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast, and is, in short, a system where recipients on the ground receive information that aircraft continually broadcast about themselves – primarily identification and position.
The position data is especially suited for use in a reference system, since the positions broadcast can be used as truth data, and the air picture produced can then be compared with these. In this manner, the quality of the radars, and of the data they transmit, can be assessed.
By using reference data from the ADS-B system, the project has also created software that automatically finds and corrects discrepancies. The result is a more cohesive and enhanced air picture.