Press releases


Rohde & Schwarz ATC direction finding system enhances air traffic safety and increases controller productivity

The new R&S DF-ATC-S is the latest direction finding (DF) system for air traffic control (ATC) applications from Rohde & Schwarz . Offering a bundle of state-of-the-art-features from a single source, it simultaneously monitors up to 28 VHF airband channels and four out-of-band UHF channels, with equally high accuracy and measurement speed. Four standard configurations are available to meet the scalable requirements of airports and control centers in order to enhance call-sign clarity.

R&S DF-ATC-S radio direction finding system
R&S DF-ATC-S radio direction finding system

The advanced R&S DF-ATC-S system from Rohde & Schwarz offers an unparalleled package of features and benefits that provide controllers with an extra sense. The highlights:

• Multichannel DF capability with up to 32 channels in parallel

• High sensitivity and DF accuracy for wide coverage and precise georeferencing

• Core system integrated in compact outdoor unit requires minimum infrastructure

• Complete end-to-end solution that reduces the cost of installation, training and maintenance

The R&S DF-ATC-S integrates a combination of field-proven technologies to enhance mission-critical system performance, making it possible to locate and identify incoming aircraft quickly and accurately. The system’s core element is the direction finding unit. It meets all requirements of the DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH and the recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO). Wideband signal processing delivers a high level of DF quality on all 32 channels.

The system is available with two different DF antennas that cover the entire frequency range. The wide-aperture DF antenna comes with nine antenna elements for stationary applications, while the narrow-aperture DF antenna is for semimobile and cost-sensitive installations.

When the R&S DF-ATC-S operates as a standalone system, a graphical user interface specially designed for ATC applications makes it easier to separate aircraft. If it is integrated into existing ATC systems, the DF results can be shown on the radar or map displays. This reduces call-sign confusion and helps controllers quickly identify responses from wrong aircraft. As a result, controllers can safely handle numerous flights even when traffic volume is high.

Antiglare and high-contrast touch panels facilitate readability and handling for efficient operation in towers. Controllers can switch between different frequency channels with a touch of a finger. System users and administrators can be assigned different access rights to restrict system configuration changes.

The R&S DF-ATC-S is a comprehensive end-to-end solution that reduces the cost of installation, training and maintenance for commercial and military airports. Rohde & Schwarz provides complete ATC DF systems, including masts, installation support, training and maintenance.

At the World ATM Congress in Madrid from March 6 to 8, 2018, Rohde & Schwarz will showcase its comprehensive portfolio of state-of-the-art air traffic management solutions at booth 586 in hall 10. For more information, visit

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Feb 27, 2018
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Rohde & Schwarz

The Rohde & Schwarz technology group is among the trailblazers when it comes to paving the way for a safer and connected world with its leading solutions in test & measurement, technology systems, and networks & cybersecurity. Founded more than 85 years ago, the group is a reliable partner for industry and government customers around the globe. On June 30, 2022, Rohde & Schwarz had around 13,000 employees worldwide. The independent group achieved a net revenue of EUR 2.53 billion in the 2021/2022 fiscal year (July to June). The company is headquartered in Munich, Germany.

R&S® is a registered trademark of Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG.
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