Vertical Looking Radar

Submitted by ka_s_lim_jason_ on Mon, 07/22/2019 - 11:59

The Rothamsted Research - Radar Entomology Unit has developed a Vertical-Looking entomological Radar system (VLR) which allows for continuous observation of high-flying insects between heights of 150 m and 1,200 m above the ground. The VLR system could have impact across a range of agricultural systems from e.g. wheat and cotton, to vegetable crops and pasture by providing real-time information on current and future pest outbreaks. Growing interest in the approach is demonstrated by the new VLR units that have been deployed recently in Europe and which will be fully integrated into the newly-formed European Network for the Radar surveillance of Animal Movement (ENRAM; EU-COST Action ES1305). Units have also been established in China, Australia and US. Two VLRs have been operating continuously at Rothamsted (Hertfordshire) since 1999 and at the Chilbolton Facility for Atmospheric and Radio Research (Hampshire) since 2000. This information allows us to identify individual insect down to functional group such as lady birds, lace wing and moths with different body plan. With some additional information, such as time of year in which different insects travel and the height in which they have been detected to be travelling, we can narrow the options down. There is no lower threshold of insect population that can be detected by the radar as it extracts the radar signature of individual targets and not groups of insects. Applicability across different regions We have over 16 years of experience operating the VLR system in the UK where we have also demonstrated that it can be used as an effective system for monitoring insect migration. In 2016 we started using this experience to explore the potential for the technology in other parts of the world.


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Last auto update on:: 14 Sep 2020 : 07 am