What are the different modes of a transponder?

Civil aircraft may be equipped with transponders capable of operating in different modes:

  • Mode A equipment transmits an identifying code only.
  • Mode C equipment enables the ATCO to see the aircraft altitude or flight level automatically.
  • Mode S equipment has altitude capability and also permits data exchange.

What is a mode 3 a C transponder?

Mode 3/A code is temporary identity of the aircraft for that ATC. The pilot then sets its transponder Mode 3/A code to requested code. This code is then sent as reply to Mode 3/A interrogations by ATC. Mode 3/A code can be used for purposes other than identification.

What is Mode B transponder?

SSR modes identification, adapted from source. While mode A is compliant with military mode 3 (both often referred to as 3/A), mode B is purely civil. Its purpose is assumed to be an extension of the mode A, giving 4096 additional codes to ATC.

What is a 4096 code transponder?

A discrete transponder code (often called a squawk code) is assigned by air traffic controllers to identify an aircraft uniquely in a flight information region (FIR). Four octal digits can represent up to 4096 different codes, which is why such transponders are sometimes described as “4096 code transponders.”

What is a transponder in a commercial aircraft?

Transponders on commercial aircraft transmit their carrier and flight identification numbers to air traffic control centers. They are also used to measure distance by calculating the elapsed time between the sending of the interrogator signal and the receipt of the transponder’s signal.

How do aircraft transponders work?

Aircraft Transponders: What They Are and How They Work. An aircraft’s transponder (short for “transmitter-responder”) is an electronic device on aircraft that transmits a four digit code (called a “squawk code”) which allows the aircraft to be identified by Air Traffic Control.

What is aircraft mode?

Airplane mode. Alternatively referred to as flight mode, airplane mode is a mode on devices, such as cell phones and tablets, that disables all wireless communications without having to turn off the device.