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They differ in frequency of about 6000 Mhz. What are the practical differences of these devices. What are the ups and downs vs the other?

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  • $\begingroup$ There are many other bands as well; if you read a bit about them you'll see the differences in atmospheric transmission, target resolution, target reflectivities (to a minor extent), ease of generation and/or reception. $\endgroup$ – Carl Witthoft Dec 26 '15 at 12:11
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Different wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation have different penetrating and reflection properties.

The wavelength produced by S Band radars is 8 to 15 cm (2 to 4 GHz) and the wavelength produced by X Band radars is 2.5 to 4 cm (8 to 12 GHz).

Because of the smaller wavelengths produced by X Band radars they use small antennas. Such antennas can easily fit onto smaller boat, consequently X Band radar is used for marine applications.

Because of the smaller wavelength, the X Band radar is more sensitive and can detect smaller particles.

Meteorological X Band radars are used to study

cloud development because they can detect the tiny water particles and also used to detect light precipitation such as snow. X band radars also attenuate very easily, so they are used for only very short range weather observation

Most major airplanes are equipped with an X band radar to pick up turbulence and other weather phenomenon

The radio waves produced by S Band radars are not easily attenuated, this gives them greater penetrating power and they are used for "near and far weather observations". Their penetration capabilities allow them to see through heavy weather.

The size of S Band antennas can exceed 7.6 m (25 ft) in size.

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RADAR (RAdio Detecting And Ranging) was first employed during World War Two to locate enemy ships and planes. Since that time radar has evolved into the navigation aid primarily used to avoid collisions. Today it's often referred to as ARPA or automatic radar plotting aid and is a combination of radar and computer technologies merged to augment watch standing. There are two basic marine radar frequencies commonly known as "X" and "S" band. "X" band, because of its higher frequency, 10 GHz provides a higher resolution and a crisper image while "S" band, at 3 GHz is less affected by rain and fog. In most situations larger vessels are fitted with both "X" and "S" band radars while smaller vessels will only have an "X" band. Vessels in excess of 300 gross tons are required to have two operational marine radars and one of those radars must be an ARPA. An industry misconception is that if a vessel is fitted with three radars that all three must be operational. This is not true; only two radars, one being an ATA (Automatic Tracking - like ARPA but requires one user click first!), are required. (Full ARPA [no manual target selection] is a requirement at 10,000GT)

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  • $\begingroup$ Maybe the link should be edited back into the answer as source, given that this answer is directly copied from there $\endgroup$ – OpticalResonator Jun 12 '18 at 17:11

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