AI Mk. IV radar
Airborne Interception radar, Mark IV, or AI Mk. IV for short, was the world’s first operational air-to-air radar system. It arguably played a role in ending the Blitz, the Luftwaffe’s night bombing campaign of late 1940 and early 1941. Early development was prompted by a 1936 memo of Henry Tizard on the topic of night fighting.
About AI Mk. IV radar in brief
Airborne Interception radar, Mark IV, or AI Mk. IV for short, was the world’s first operational air-to-air radar system. It arguably played a role in ending the Blitz, the Luftwaffe’s night bombing campaign of late 1940 and early 1941. Early development was prompted by a 1936 memo of Henry Tizard on the topic of night fighting. By late 1935, Robert Watt’s development of what was then known as RDF at Bawdsey Manor in Suffolk on the east coast of England had succeeded in building a system able to detect large aircraft at ranges over 40 miles. The introduction of the cavity magnetron in 1940 led to rapid progress in microwave-frequency radars, which offered far greater accuracy and were effective at low altitudes. The Mk. IV’s receiver, originally a television receiver, was used as the basis of the ASV Mk. II radar, Chain Home Low, AMES Type 7, and many other radar systems throughout the war. It was used in the front lines for only a short period. The prototype Mk. VII began to replace the Mk. IV at the end of 1941, and the AI Mk VIII largely relegated the Mk IV to second-line duties by 1943. The system was eventually replaced by what is today known as the Dowding system, covering the area of one or two airbases, and covering the two main air sectors. It took time, during World War I, for the CH systems to become accurate to the point where they could not be used during daylight attacks, and would turn to daylight attacks.
Their predecessors in the CH system grew concerned that night bombing would be too accurate and would be forced to call off daylight attacks and turn to a night effort. This led to the creation of the CH System, which was used by the RAF Fighter Command during the Second World War. It is still in use today, and is the basis for the RAF’s modern air traffic control system, which is based on a system developed in the 1950s by the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the U.S. Air Force. The CH system is still being used today by the UK Air Force, and was used during the First World War by the US Air Force as well as the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Navy. It has a range of about 1.5 miles. It can detect aircraft up to 20,000 feet with a wavelength of 1. 5 metres, and can detect targets within this range up to 5 miles of the aircraft’s altitude. The range is limited by a minimum range that was barely close enough to allow the pilot to see the target. Considerable skill was required of the radar operator to interpret the displays of its two cathode ray tubes for the pilot. This was only with the increasing proficiency of the crews, along with the installation of new ground-based radar systems dedicated to the interception task, that interception rates began to increase. These roughly doubled every month through the height of The Blitz.