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radar beacon[′rā‚där ‚bē·kən]
a transponder used as an aid to navigation that works in conjunction with the radar sets on aircraft and ships. Activated by the signals sent out from a radar set on board a ship or plane, the beacon responds with coded signals, which enable the radar set to determine the beacon’s direction and distance. Radar beacons are used in radio navigation to determine the position of an object with respect to the known position of the beacon and to provide for an accurate approach by these objects to the beacon’s site.