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(Email: , Mo: 08108304735)


 Introduction.
→DME is a secondary radar system. As the name suggest, it measures slant range from ground
→Although DME only provides distance directly, it can also derive Ground speed & Time to
reach the station. DME computes Ground speed by timing the interval between distance
changes. Time to station is calculated from Ground speed & distance. Ground speed & Time
is accurate only when A/C is travelling directly towards or away from station.

 Frequency Range.
→It operates in UHF Band and the 252 available channels (126X & 126Y) are contained in
960 MHZ -1215 MHZ with 1 MHZ spacing.
→Transmitter : 1025-1150 MHZ.
Receiver : 962 –1213 MHZ.

 Principle :- Random PRF/Pulse Technique.

 Diagram.
 Operation.
→The interrogator in the A/C transmits a stream of pulses on the carrier frequency of ground
Transponder in jittered form.
→At the instant of transmission, the receiver of interrogator sets up gates to match the random
PRF of transmitted twin pulses. Also it starts a range search.
→The DME Transponder on ground re-transmits the interrogation pulses after a delay of 50μs
(processing time) at a frequency +/- 63 MHZ from the interrogation frequency on same carrier
→The receiving equipment of an A/C is designed so that the responses which match its
randomized PRF are allowed through the gates. The pulses are now locked on. The DME is in
Tracking mode.
→As the A/C range from station increases or decreases, the gate moves to accommodate the
corresponding increase or decrease in time between transmission & reception of pulses. This
Lock & Follow Technique ensures the returning twin pulses are continuosly tracked.
→To achieve a rapid “Lock-on”, the DME interrogator transmits 150 pulses /sec for 100 sec.
→These reply pulses are now sensed by Timing circuits in A/C receiver that measures the
elapsed time between transmission & reception. Electronic Circuits within the receiver then
substracts 50μs from this time, multiplies the obtained value with speed of Light & divides by
2 to obtain the Slant Range.

 VOR/DME Frequency Pairing.

DME facilities can exist alone but they are usually co-located with VOR. Although VOR (VHF)
& DME (UHF) operate on different frequencies, the two are integrated through paired
frequencies. Only one frequency must be selected (VOR) & the other (DME) is automatically
 ILS/DME Pairing.
Most Localizers (Track guidance component of ILS System) are paired with DME located
very close to landing threshold of Runway. This provides accurate & continuous distance
information during an instrument approach to land. Many ILS instrument approach
procedures commence with flying a constant distance arc based on DME.

 DME Controls & Indicators.

 Station Identification.
A 3-Letter call sign is transmitted every 30 sec usually in conjunction of VOR. There is no
range information present at the time of identification. A/C equipment have a 10 sec
memory circuit to display the range during time identification.

 Operational Uses.
→Two position Fixes are obtained when DME is used in conjunction with VOR/ILS.
→It provides a basis for more accurate holding patterns on DME arc.
→Apart from slant range , Ground Speed & Time to reach the station can also be derived.
→It facilitates the accurate separation between two or more A/C based on VOR/DME fix
reported by individual A/C.
→It helps in radar identification when an A/C reports its position in terms of distance &
bearing from a VOR/DME station. E.g. BBB160020.
→Accurate range to touchdown are available to pilot when the transponder is operating in
conjunction with glidepath.

 Accuracy : ICAO Specification for DME is 0.5NM or 3% of Distance.

 Other Useful Information.

→To reduce the effect of reflections, ground station will not reply to another interrogation
for about 60μs.
→The pulse separation spacing is same for all X-channels i.e.12μs for both Interrogator &
Transponder. In case of Y-channels, pulse spacing is 36μs for interrogator & 30μs for
→ DME is subject to Line of Sight reception. An A/C below horizon (out of LOS) will not receive
any signal from ground station. Whenever the A/C DME is not receiving ground signals, it
enters into standby mode & stops transmitting to save electricity and wear & tear on unit.
As soon as an A/C is in range of ground facilities signal, it returns to normal operation and
begins to transmit once again.

 Problem: At 1007, range→27NM,

At 1013, range→36.5NM,
Find Ground speed?
(Email: , Mo: 08108304735



 Instrument Landing System is a ground based instrument approach system that assist
pilots to fly along a precise path, defined in three dimensions, during approach to land
on a specific runway using radio guidance signals transmitted by ground signals.
 ILS is very useful when visibility is limited & the pilot cannot see airport & runway.
 It was introduced in 40’s. Though it has been in existence for over 70 years ,it is still
most accurate approach & landing aid that is used by airliners.