Abstract Silicon drift detectors provide unambiguous two-dimensional position information for charged particle detection in a single detector layer. Like most other semi-conductor technologies, Silicon drift detectors are presently used in vertexing detectors. By taking into account, the drastic reduction in channel count compared to other silicon-based devices this specific technology is also well suited for large coverage tracking detectors. The first larger area Silicon Drift Tracker (6.3 cm×6.3 cm) was developed as the inner tracking detector (SVT) of the STAR experiment at the RHIC collider. Advantages and limitations of this detector will be discussed. Recent results of detector performance based on an application in a heavy ion fixed target experiment at the BNL-AGS (E896) are presented.