Search and Rescue Transponder SART

The SART is a search and rescue radar transponder. It is portable and can be operated from the parent vessel or from a survival craft, like a life raft and lifeboats. Due to the poor radar-reflecting properties of Life rafts and lifeboats, these kinds of survival crafts are difficult to see on a radar. Due to this reason a SART was developed which on receiving a radio signal, answers by transmitting a radio signal of the same frequency. The transmitted radio signal from the device makes the life raft   of the lifeboat visible on the radar screen of the aircraft or a ship undertaking the search and rescue operation.

SARTs are activated by the radar energy of an approaching Aircraft or Ship carrying out the search and rescue operation and starts its own transmission. The radar signature produced is a radial line of 12 dots over an approximate eight mile length on the search vehicles radar, from a position just beyond the position of the distress. As the search unit closes the target to about 1 nm, the dots become small arcs. The signature will change again to concentric circles when the range closes to a few hundred metres and thus helps in locating the crew within the Liferaft or a Lifeboat during search and rescue operations. 


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