Radar Coverage Analyze


The radar coverage analyze tool aims to generate radar coverage map in different levels, by using historical plots. Internally, the coverage surface of each level is divided into many sector cells. The angle of each cell is 1 ACP (≈0.08789°), and the edge length is 1 NM.

When more than 3 plots are detected in one cell, this cell will be marked as "covered". And with enough plots of different azimuth and distance from radar site, it’s able to determine the coverage of every cell and finally get the coverage map of the whole surface. Considering most civil flights operate in limited predefined routes, to get a full coverage map it may need a long period (more than one month) of recorded plots.


To generate an useful coverage map, you need to prepare recorded radar plots in ASTERIX CAT001 or CAT048 formats. And the following data items shall exist. To generate an useful coverage map, you need to prepare recorded radar plots in ASTERIX CAT001 or CAT048 formats. And the following data items shall exist.

For CAT001

  • I001/010 - Data Source Identifier
  • I001/040 - Measured Position in Polar Coordinates
  • I001/090 - Mode-C Code in Binary Representation

For CAT048

  • I048/010 - Data Source Identifier
  • I048/040 - Measured Position in Slant Polar Coordinates
  • I048/090 - Flight Level in Binary Representation

Plots are preferred as they are not filtered by radar tracker software. However tracks are accepted and measured as they are not smoothed by radar tracker.

Recording shall be stored in ASTERIX Toolkit native REX format (XML files). The File Converter can be used to convert files in other formats into REX format.

Main Window

The main window of radar coverage analyze tool is as below.


It composes of the following parts:

  • Actions

    Menu and tool bars, including select-able menu items and tool buttons for different actions.

  • Messages

    On bottom of the window, messages and logs are shown here.

  • Information Panel

    On left of the window, displays important configuration and statistic information.

  • Coverage Chart

    On right of the window, the coverage map of selected level will be displayed here.


Actions Description
New Create a new analyze
Open Open and load analyze from an existing SQLite database file
Save Save current analyze to a SQLite database file
Save As Save current analyze to a new SQLite database file
Settings Open configuration window
Process Start or continue processing
Stop Stop processing. The process will exit when current file is finished. It could take quite a while if current file is big. This is to avoid plots in current files are processed twice if you continue processing later.
Close Close the radar coverage analyze window
Layer Select one layer to display its coverage chart
Live Update Update chart display during process. Display it could slightly increase processing speed if there is a big amount of data
Save Chart Save current coverage chart to a SVG image file


Name Description
Data Packets - Total All data packets that have been read and processed from recording files
Data Packets - Good Data packets that can be correctly decoded. If this value is too low, check if frame type is correct.
Data Blocks - CAT001 Data Blocks of CAT001
Data Blocks - CAT002 Data Blocks of CAT002
Data Blocks - CAT034 Data Blocks of CAT034
Data Blocks - CAT048 Data Blocks of CAT048
Data Records - Total All data records extracted from data blocks
Data Records - Qualified Data records with plot or track that can be used to update radar coverage map
Data Records - Filtered by SAC/SIC Data records ignored due to its SAC/SIC doesn't match configuration
Data Records - Filtered by Level Data records ignored due to its level is lower than minimal level, or its level is greater than maximum level, or its level is not valid
Data Records - Filtered by Range Data records ignored due to its distance is greater than radar maximum coverage, or its range is not valid

Configuration Window

The configuration window is as below.


It contains parameters used for generating radar coverage map.

Parameter Description Constraint
Radar Name The name of radar for analyze. Any literal text
SAC System Area Code, used to filter data from other sensors 0~255
SIC System Identification Code, used to filter data from other sensors 0~255
Format Data format for Mode-S radar or conventional radar
Maximum Coverage Radar maximum coverage, any plots far from this value will be ignored. 0~300 NM
Frame Type The frame type of data in recording file
Verify SAC/SIC Turn on/off the filter of SAC/SIC. When selected, only plots with matching SAC/SIC are processed
Minimal Level Plots under this level will be ignored 0~420 FL
Maximum Level Plots above this level will be ignored 0~420 FL
Level per Layer The levels between two coverage surfaces. Plots will be assigned to a layer closest to its actual level 0~100 FL
Feed Dir Directory to read radar plots recording files. All files under this directory with ".rex " suffix will be processed.

If any field contains an error, a warning message will be displayed.