Doppler C-band radar operates at a wavelength of 8 to 15 centimeters and has a frequency of 4 to 8 gigahertz. It is used mainly in short-range weather observation, but is also used in military applications for long-range missile detection and surveillance.
The lower frequencies and wavelengths used in C-band radar allows it to use a smaller dish. This makes the system more cost-effective for smaller TV stations and research organizations compared to the larger L-band or S-band radar systems. Between March and May of 2003, the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute researched the possible use of C-band Doppler radar to study bird migrations. In the study, the C-band weather satellites had an 86 percent degree of accuracy recognizing bird patterns.