primary radar[′prī‚mer·ē ′rā‚där]
Radar in which the incident beam is reflected from the target to form the return signal. Also known as primary surveillance radar (PSR).
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
A radar that depends exclusively on transmitted energy, reflected back from the target. A primary radar indicates the target position in range and azimuth. It also can be made to indicate height. The other information for identification, however, cannot be given by primary radar, as it does not incorporate transponder data. The ranges of primary radar are dependent on transmission power and characteristics of the reflecting object and PRF (pulse repetitive frequency).
An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation Copyright © 2005 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved