Hiding In Plane Sight

by | Oct 8, 2022 | Physics, Experiments

Introduction

In this experiment(Hiding In Plane Sight), we will be simulating radar waves with the help of light. We will also be determining the different shapes of saliant (re-entrant) triangles to decrease the reflection of light back to the surface.

Aim

To simulate the radar waves using light and to determine different shapes of saliant triangles to minimise light reflection to the source.

Theory

The RCS (Radar Cross Section) depends on the shape of the aircraft, which means the radar of the plane can be lowered by changing the shape of the plane. To decrease radar, there are some aircraft like stealth aircraft that use skin, which is transparent to radar. This creates a saliant triangle structure inside the aircraft. But in these aircraft, radar waves get trapped inside the structure, resulting in the reflection of internal faces.

Requirements

1. A light

2. A light meter

3. A black shoebox

4. A stand

5. Different three-dimensional shapes.

6. Notebook

Procedure

Step 1: Take a black shoebox and stand. Place the stand inside the black shoebox.

Step 2: On the top of the stand, attach a light and a light meter.

Step 3: Place the three-dimensional test object under the light source one after another.

Step 4: Using the light meter, measure the reflected light from the test object.

Step 5: To test the reflectivity of radar or light, place each of the three-dimensional shapes.

Step 6: Perform six experiments with every shape.

Step 7: Record your observations.

Observation

1. We examined thirteen different shapes (similar colours and sizes) to test the reflectivity of light.

2. By performing six tests for each of the shapes, we measured the standard deviation of each of the shapes.

3. We observed large differences in reflectivity between different shapes.

4. We find that the most suitable shape for less reflectivity of light was the zig-zig structure.

5. The zig-zag structure scattered the most waves.

Result

1. To avoid the large flat surfaces, stealth aircraft have been made.

2. Stealth aircraft reduce the RCS by having a thin profile with sharp edges on the body.

3. Some other aircraft use large shapes behind the radar transparent skin for maximising the radar signal scattering.

4. We were also fascinated about using pyramid and triangular shapes as we wanted to know which shape would reflect less light. And through this experiment, we find that if we use a zig-zag shape beneath the flat surface of stealth aircraft, the shape would help increase radar scattering.

5. By doing this, one can easily reduce the plain radar. This would help in avoiding easy detection of the aircraft.

Precaution

1. All the shapes should have similar sizes and colours.

2. Record all the measurements precisely.

Conclusion

In this experiment, we perform tests like reflection and scattering off light on different shapes to find out different properties of radar. It can also help in developing stealth aircraft technology.

Viva Questions with Answers

Q.1 What is the full form of RCS?

ANS. RCS stands for Radio Cross Section.

Q.2 What do you understand about RCS?

ANS. The electromagnetic signal of an object through which we can detect any object is termed Radar Cross Section.

Q.3 What was the aim of your experiment?

ANS. We aimed to determine the factor that can minimise the reflection of light back to the source.

Q.4 Which shape can we use to avoid detection of radar?

ANS. We can use a zig-zag shape beneath the surface of the stealth aircraft to reduce the detection of aircraft detection.

 

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