Welcome to Borealis’s documentation!


Borealis is a newly developed digital radar system by the engineering team at SuperDARN Canada. It is a substantial upgrade to existing SuperDARN systems. Features of Borealis include:

A paper has been published for the Borealis system and can be found here.

This documentation attempts to capture all information required for a new user to Borealis to start from nothing and eventually have a Borealis system running. The information includes:

This documentation is always being updated and refined, so please check back regularly for updates. Any comments, questions, and/or suggestions can be sent to the SuperDARN Canada team, we welcome any and all feedback, as that has helped to make the Borealis system as successful as it is today!


Current limitations as of March, 2023:

  • Borealis does not implement clear frequency search before transmitting. Only fixed frequencies are used

  • The 5MHz transmit and receive bandwidths are effectively only 3.5MHz wide, as the transmit waveform near the edges of the band seem to have issues. This requires further investigation

  • There is currently no ability to tune centre frequencies of the USRP units in real-time

  • All slices of an experiment must have the same decimation scheme


In the near future, we plan to implement:

  • The option to have pulse compression using 13-bit Barker codes on the transmit pulses

  • The option to use a clear frequency search

  • Continual improvements to the code-base and documentation

Indices and tables