EISCAT is a joint multinational research agency established back in 1975. It operates large-scale radar facilities at several locations north of the Arctic Circle to study the warming of the Earth’s ionosphere and interactions between the sun and the earth as revealed by disturbances in the ionosphere and magnetosphere, among other things.
The first system, an UHF incoherent scatter radar, began operating in 1981. The systems have been continually improved since then, and are meanwhile able to emit both vertically and horizontally polarized waves as well as circular polarized waves using a “switch guard” developed by SPINNER. The parabolic antennas used are about 120 m across.