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Exploiting doppler blind zone information for ground moving target tracking with bistatic airborne radar

: Mertens, M.; Koch, W.; Kirubarajan, T.


IEEE transactions on aerospace and electronic systems 50 (2014), Nr.1, S.130-148
ISSN: 0018-9251
ISSN: 1557-9603
Fraunhofer FKIE ()

One of the main challenges in the domain of ground target tracking based on measurements from airborne ground moving target indication (GMTI) radar is the masking of targets due to the Doppler blind zone of the sensor. This blind zone arises from the clutter cancellation by space-time adaptive processing (STAP) to separate moving target returns from the general clutter background. Low-Doppler targets can easily be masked by such a blind zone, leading to sequences of missed detections that strongly deteriorate the performance of a standard tracking filter. This work investigates the Doppler blind zone in the case of bistatic transmitter and receiver configurations and its impact on the tracking of ground targets. The knowledge on the Doppler blind zone is incorporated into a Bayesian unscented Kalman filter multiple hypothesis tracker (UKF-MHT) tracking filter that is also capable of using road-map information. Based on different simulation scenarios, it is demonstrated that in contrast to a monostatic configuration with sideways-looking radar, the blind zone width determined by the minimum detectable velocity is not constant in general. The obtained track results reveal the benefit of exploiting this additional knowledge, especially in combination complementary with road-map information if available.