Rockville FAA Radar Site
Rockville FAA Radar Site (1978-Active) - A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Beacon Only Site (BOS) first established in 1978 near Rockville, Sherman County, Nebraska. The site is used to identify and track military and civilian aircraft movements within a 200-mile radius and to provide air-ground radio communication with those aircraft. Assigned an FAA ID of ZQJM. Active FAA Radar Site.
This site became an FAA radar site in 1978, furnishing radar track data to the FAA ARTCC's and to USAF Direction Centers. The initial FAA ATCBI-5 beacon radar remained in operation until it was replaced by a Mode S Beacon System in October 1995.
Mode S Beacon System
The Rockville FAA Radar Site was selected in the 1990s to become one of 21 long-range radar sites to have a Mode S radar beacon system installed. The Mode S system allowed operation in the existing beacon modes but added features to improve beacon operation by allowing aircraft identification with a single interrogation and two-way digital communication between controllers and pilots.
Besides the 21 long-range sites, there were other short-range radars to be upgraded for a total of 137 sites on the implementation list. Rockville was #112 on the list, scheduled to receive the Mode S equipment on 28 Feb 1995. Installation required interfacing with the radar system, addition of a beacon antenna on top of the search radar antenna, a new larger radome, interfacing with the Common Digitizer (CD-2) if installed, additional communication lines and equipment.