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What are the uses of radar?

Radar is still most familiar as a military technology. Radar antennas mounted at airports or other ground stations can be used to detect approaching enemy airplanes or missiles, for example. The United States has a very elaborate Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS) to detect incoming missiles, with three major radar detector stations in Clear in Alaska, Thule in Greenland, and Fylingdales Moor in England. It's not just the military who use radar, however. Most civilian airplanes and larger boats and ships now have radar too as a general aid to navigation. Every major airport has a huge radar scanning dish to help air traffic controllers guide planes in and out, whatever the weather. Next time you head for an airport, look out for the rotating radar dish mounted on or near the control tower.
The same science is at work in a radar speed gun. When a police officer fires a radar beam at your car, the metal bodywork reflects the beam straight back. But the faster your car is traveling, the more it will change the frequency of the radio waves in the beam. Sensitive electronic equipment in the radar gun uses this information to calculate how fast your car is going.
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