RHOTHETA Elektronik GmbH is building on 20 years of experience in the design, development and production of high-quality direction finders for ATC, VTS and SAR applications. In the area of SAR technology, the company specializes in equipment for professional SAR organizations active at sea and on land.
RHOTHETA Elektronik GmbH was established on 01.08.1989 in the town of Roding in Bavaria, Germany. The company initially developed the RT-1000 direction finder system for ATC and VTS applications, and the RT-1000 received approval from the Deutsche Flugsicherung in early 1992. This product was very successfully marketed by Becker Flugfunkwerke GmbH, and in 1994 we also started to partner with Rohde & Schwarz, which markets the RT-1000 as the PA030. To date, over 100 systems have been deployed worldwide. The RT-1000 has been enhanced on an ongoing basis, and this direction finder system is still used worldwide.
In 1993, the company moved its headquarters location to Vierkirchen near Munich.
In 1996, RHOTHETA introduced its RT-200 CrewFinder direction finder, a completely automatic direction finder for use in high sea states. Deutsche Gesellschaft zur Rettung Schiffbrüchiger (DGzRS), Germany’s leading SAR organization, immediately chose this system for its fleet. Working together with our customers, we have constantly enhanced this direction finder and its functionality and are now marketing the fourth generation of the RT-200/202 system family. Today several thousand systems are in use worldwide.
In 1997, RHOTHETA launched the RT-100 Emergency Receiver (also known as the “CrewGuard”) due to popular demand for a receiver to monitor the international emergency frequency 121.500 MHz and trigger alarms in the event of an incident. At roughly the same time, we were receiving frequent requests for a direction finder system for SAR helicopters and winged aircraft. The operators of such aircraft require all civilian and military emergency frequencies as well as the Cospars-Sarsat frequency 406.028 MHz. The year 1996 marked the beginning of the most ambitious undertaking in our company’s history, and this undertaking resulted in a new type of system with a patented antenna design. Here too, we were also able to partner with Becker Flugfunkwerk GmbH, whose years of experience contributed to the success of our new system. At the turn of the millennium, the first RT-600s were shipped to customers with the designation SAR-DF 517 by Becker Flugfunkwerk. Several hundred of these systems have been deployed to date.
Our RT-300 direction finder system was developed to meet the needs of many users who wanted to replace their old direction finders by a modern version with MOB functionality. This new direction finder system has been on the market since mid- 2004 and can be considered the most advanced direction finder system for this application available today.
The RT-500-M (Marine), a direction finder system for professional SAR use, is the most recent member of our family of direction finders. Based on our RT-600 (SAR-DF517) direction finder system, the RT-500-M was designed to meet the specific needs of marine SAR organizations. This was done in close cooperation with Deutsche Gesellschaft zur Rettung Schiffbrüchiger (DGzRS), which provided a precise specification scope and tested the first prototypes on its rescue cruisers. The RT-500-M went into full-scale production in early 2005.
In August 2005, RHOTHETA moved its headquarters location to the new and larger office in Neuegling nearby Murnau (Bavaria). In August 2008, RHOTHETA moved its headquarter again into a larger office within Murnau. For the very beginning, RHOTHETA has been involved virtually exclusively in the design, development and production of direction finder systems based on the use of the Doppler effect. The advent of worldwide GPS marked the end of the importance of radio direction finding for navigation purposes, and many established companies abandoned their activities in this area or started to concentrate on special military or intelligence applications. RHOTHETA has always recognized the importance of and been committed to the use of radio direction finders for SAR applications. We have built up our competencies in this area on an ongoing basis and can offer a range of products that now represent the state of the art. In the future, we will continue to partner with our customers to enhance our products as a function of their needs. Our products are intended for professional users as well as for private individuals who feel a need for superior technology. We are fully aware of the fact that human life may depend on quality of our products.