UWB Impulse Radar Characterization and Processing Techniques


  1. Barrie, G.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Ottawa, Ottawa ONT (CAN)
Ultra-Wideband (UWB) impulse radar is inherently a noise-limited technology. While subnanosecond pulses achieve good range resolution, the resultant extreme bandwidth exacts a toll on system performance in terms of noise power entering the receiver. Data must be processed efficiently to yield an acceptable signal to noise ratio (SNR), and to enhance structural details of the return pulse. This is achieved by a combination of ensemble averaging to reduce thermal fluctuations and the newly developed Background Noise Conditioning (BNC) method, a statistical signal processing technique used to remove isolated spectral interferers. BNC, developed at DRDC Ottawa, periodically examines spectral noise properties to automatically configure an appropriate notch filter. For the radar data obtained in this investigation, averaging over a relatively small number of pulses is insufficient to raise the desired returns appreciably above the noise floor. Typical SNR values for one received pulse are around 18 to 19 dB. Beyond ten pulses, SNR improves approximately linearly. Integration of about 80 pulses results in a SNR maximum of about 35 dB, with an associated improvement of ~15 dB over the untreated data (that is, for situations where BNC is not applied). For pulses > 80, the averaging takes place over a long enough time period that returns become blurred due to target motion. This effectively defines the upper limit of pulse returns that can be averaged without additional processing to f

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Report Number
DRDC-OTTAWA-TR-2004-251 — Technical Report
Date of publication
01 Dec 2004
Number of Pages

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