Ultra-wide-band synthetic-aperture radar for mine-field detection

Lawrence Carin, Norbert Geng, Mark McClure, Jeffrey Sichina, Lam Nguyen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

152 Scopus citations


A full-wave model is developed for electromagnetic scattering from buried and surface land mines (both conducting and plastic), taking rigorous account of the lossy, dispersive, and potentially layered properties of soil. The (polarimetric) theoretical results are confirmed via synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) measurements, performed using the US Army Research Laboratory's BoomSAR, with which fully polarimetric ultra-wide-band (50-1200 MHz) SAR imagery is produced. The SAR system is used to acquire a large database of imagery, including a significant distribution of naturally occurring clutter. Several techniques are used for mine detection with such data, including several detectors that are based on target features gleaned from the modeling, as well as a matched-filter-like detector that directly incorporates the target signatures themselves. In addition, the theoretical model is used to predict wave phenomenology in various environments (beyond the limited range of parameters that can be examined experimentally). Since the efficacy of radar-based subsurface sensing depends strongly on the soil properties, we perform a parametric study of the dependence of such on the target RCS, and on possible land-mine resonances.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18-33
Number of pages16
JournalIEEE Antennas and Propagation Magazine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 1999
Externally publishedYes


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