Super Dual Auroral Radar Network
The Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) is an international radar network for studying the upper atmosphere and ionosphere, comprising eleven radars in the northern hemisphere and seven in the southern hemisphere that operate in the High Frequency (HF) bands between 8.0 MHz (37m) and 22.0 MHz (14m).
The Java applets that are used as the radar data display system currently indicate the 10 MHz (30m) and 14 MHz (21m) frequency bands as being primarily used in 2012 (in the Northern Hemisphere). The radars measure the Doppler velocity (and other related characteristics) of plasma density irregularities in the ionosphere.
In the standard operating mode each radar scans through 16 beams of azimuthal separation ~3.24°, with a total scan time of 1 min. Each beam is divided into 75 range gates of length 45 km, and so in each full scan the radars each cover 52° in azimuth and over 3000 km in range, an area of over 4×106 km².
Additions to the ionospheric RADAR network (in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres) have occurred about once every 4 years.
 SuperDARN sites
The following is a list of SuperDARN sites, based on lists maintained by Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Saskatchewan, and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. As of 2009, the network is expanding to the middle latitudes, including sites in Hays, Kansas (near Fort Hays State University), Oregon, and the Azores, in order to support mapping outside of the auroral regions during large magnetic storms.
*: Part of the Southern Hemisphere Auroral Radar Experiment
- Because the SuperDARN network evolved in the west during the late Cold War, coverage of Russia's arctic regions is poor.
- Although there is no shortage of possible sites to cover Russia's arctic regions from Northern Europe and Alaska, the coverage would probably not be of high quality.
- So far there has been no movement within those managing the SuperDARN network to do joint ventures with Russian universities to build the Russian part of the network.
- Although Antarctica is covered reasonably well, the Sub-Antarctic regions do not have uniform coverage.
- Java VM real time display software interoperabiliy (where both poles could be observed at the same time) is still a work in progress.
|SuperDARN in action|
 In popular culture
The SuperDARN radar system has never really made a mark for itself in "pop culture", in spite of the number of nations that have parts of the system. On YouTube (but rarely other video sites) there are videos that various people have upped that hint or say that SuperDARN is equivalent in functionality to the HAARP system.
It is unclear how or why SuprDARN is being lumped in with systems like HAARP that operate at 100x to 1000x more output power. Due to the advancement of receiver technology at SuperDARN sites the receiver subsystems are quite sensitive, and do not require or need HF transmitters operating above 5 kW.
- "National Science Foundation constructs radar facility on FHSU grounds; internship created". Fort Hays State University. August 27, 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-04.[dead link]
- "SuperDARN Radar Locations". Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. Retrieved 2009-07-14.[dead link]
- "About SuperDARN". University of Saskatchewan. Retrieved 2006-06-03.
- "SuperDARN Technical Information". Virginia Tech. Retrieved 2009-07-14.[dead link]
 Research papers
Research papers related to SuperDARN and related technologies
Real time display of SuperDarn radar
- Realtime Java applet display (North American Arctic)
Each participating university should be listed here. As these are ongoing research sites, these links are subject to change.
Northern Hemisphere Stations
- Canada : SuperDARN at University of Saskatchewan
- Canada : Canadian Space Agency SuperDARN portal
- US : SuperDARN Network at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory
- US : VT SuperDARN at Virginia Tech
- US :SuperDARN at the University of Alaska Geophysical Institute
- US : SuperDARN at Virginia Tech
- US :SuperDARN at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire
- UK : SuperDARN UK
Southern Hemisphere Stations
Media related to Unwin Radar at Wikimedia Commons