Antenna array optimization strategies for robust direction finding
This paper focuses on the optimization of uniform circular antenna array (UCA) structures equipped with analog combining networks for direction finding applications. For such type of arrays, the specific choice of the combining matrix has a crucial impact on the effective radiation pattern and the sensitivity of direction-of-arrival (DOA) estimation. A design framework for constructing the combining network is proposed that improves the DOA estimation performance of the array while limiting the probability of false detection of the DOA estimator to a desired value. In detail, we first derive an analytical expression for the false detection probability of the DOA estimator. This function together with the Cramer-Rao bound are then used to find the optimal combining matrix and array aperture size for a given number of sensor elements and combiner output (baseband) channels. We provide design examples to demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach.