Algorithm Development and Experimental Verification for Target Discrimination and Bulk Filtering of Debris
Agency / Branch:
DOD / MDA
The response of an object to a burst of electromagnetic energy consists of an early-time skin response (radar cross section or RCS) and late-time (target resonance or TR) returns. Measurements of these target characteristics may be integrated and exploited in the signal/data processor for suppression of non-threating targets such as debris and decoys, all prior to dedicated track processing, threat target discrimination/identification, intercept, and post intercept surveillance and track for damage assessment. The proposed program exploits and compares these two unique algorithmic approaches - target resonances (TRs) and radar cross-section covariance (CSC). Both of these approaches are based upon the underlying physics of electromagnetic (EM) scattering from exo-atmospheric objects: 1.) The TR frequency (or frequencies) of a resonant object depends directly on its shape and electrical size, 2.) For symmetrical objects (re-entry vehicles or RVs) a strong resonance occurs when the object size is exactly an integral number of wavelengths, 3.) Resonance frequencies are only function of the target shape and are aspect-angle independent, 4.) Signal amplitude of a TR frequency is only mildly aspect-angle dependent, 5.) For non-symmetrical objects, resonances are very low in amplitude (a significant indicator of the non-threating nature of the object.
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