radio navigation


Also found in: Dictionary, Acronyms, Wikipedia.
Related to radio navigation: Radio Navigation System

radio navigation

[′rād·ē·ō ‚nav·ə′gā·shən]
(navigation)
The use of apparatus operating at radio frequencies to determine parameters useful for navigation; it includes radio direction finding, radio ranges, radio compasses, radio homing beacons, and loran.

Radio Navigation

 

operations involving the use of radio aids to facilitate the movement of such objects as aircraft and ships and the guidance of controlled objects. Radio navigation is the scientific and technical discipline that considers the design principles of radio aids and develops methods of applying such principles to solve the problems of piloting moving objects along a specific trajectory (course) and guiding the objects to a given area at a given time (see and NAVIGATION, AIR).

In radio navigation, specialized radio aids are used in solving the basic problem of navigation—the determination of an object’s position and the navigation elements of the object’s movement; various techniques used in other fields of technology, such as in radar and radio broadcasting, may also be employed.

The operation of radio navigation aids is based on the use of the following important features of radio-wave propagation: radio waves propagate over the earth’s surface along the shortest (great-circle) distance between the radiating and receiving points; the propagation velocity is constant; and radio rays reflected from and incident upon the ionosphere lie in the same plane.

Various classifications and subcategories for radio navigation aids exist. Depending on the nature of the problems solved and the completeness of the solution, such aids may be classified as radio navigation devices or radio navigation systems. Examples of radio navigation devices are radio direction finders (including automatic direction finders), range-only radar, radio beacons, and radio sextants. Such devices may be employed in combinations, or they may make use of independent artificial or natural sources of radio radiation or the reflecting properties of the earth’s surface and the fixed objects situated on it. They are only used in solving particular navigational problems, usually the determination of one line (or plane) of position for a moving object. Radio navigation systems are used in solving complex navigational problems.

Radio navigation aids may also be classified according to the wavelength band used, in conformity with regulations governing radio communications, or according to a parameter of the radio signals used to measure navigational elements; this is the most common characteristic attribute, and the signal parameters include amplitude, phase, frequency, time, and combinations of parameters, such as amplitude and time or phase and time. Another classification is based on the method of determining a line of position, such as the angle-measuring (azi-muthal), range-measuring (panoramic), and combined aids; examples of combined aids are hyperbolic and polar-coordinate systems. According to the number of moving objects to which navigation information is provided, radio navigation aids may also be classified as having limited or unlimited traffic-handling capacity. Distinctions are also made according to the presence of other characteristics, resulting in such categories as self-contained and non-self-contained aids.

The use of radio navigation methods and aids has made it possible for moving objects to maintain course and arrive at a specified area with greater accuracy; the navigation of ships and the piloting of aircraft in adverse weather conditions has also been made much safer. In principle, combining various radio navigation devices into specific systems can ensure that all the basic problems of navigation are solved. However, with a view toward improving reliability and safety in piloting objects under the most complicated conditions, in practice such systems are employed within integrated systems jointly with non-radio aids, such as inertial navigation systems.

REFERENCES

See references under .

M. M. RAICHEV

radio navigation

The use of a radio location intended for the determination of position or direction.
References in periodicals archive ?
Industrial asupport is expected in addition to the expected approval, on 31 March, by the Transport Council following its positive conclusions on the 18 January communication entitled Mid-term review of radio navigation programmes (Galileo and EGNOS)'.
NDGPS provides land-based surface radio navigation assistance throughout the US.
The parties will identify measures to promote cooperation in the field of radio navigation and hydrometeorology for the next several years.
Prague will host the agency responsible for managing Galileo, the future European satellite radio navigation system, a competitor to the US GPS.
GPS, the new space-based radio navigation system being developed by DoD, continues to experience delays, and is not expected to be fully available for marine navigation until mid-1991, according to a White Paper issued by Magnavox Advanced Products and Systems Co., a leading US manufacturer of satellite navigation user equipment.
Other documents were signed on cooperation in health care, civil servants training, customs statistics, fairs and exhibitions, radio navigation program, military training, creation of common air defense system.
Which city will host the seat of the Galileo Supervisory Authority for the European satellite radio navigation programme?
The EU and China must together resolve the problems associated with the security and incompatibility of frequencies between their respective satellite radio navigation systems, confirmed a spokesperson from the European Commission, on 10 June, while trying to be reassuring: "Solutions are possible, we are convinced of this".
They will discuss: aviation safety and security, development of an integrated aviation market in Africa, traffic management, satellite radio navigation, environmental protection and ways to implement environmental measures in Africa.
It comes as no surprise to learn that EU transport ministers are likely to ratify the compromise reached with the European Parliament, on 3 April, with regard to Galileo, the European satellite radio navigation programme (see Europolitics 3503).