Ultra wideband endfire synthetic aperture radar for landmine detection

P. Cooper, G. Verwey, C. Purry

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

1 Citation (SciVal)


The detection of landmines is an important and challenging application for remote sensing technologies. The use of ground penetrating radar is an established technique but requires close coupling between the antennae and the ground and generally suffers from a poor area coverage rate. In order to clear mines rapidly along a route using a vehicle mounted system, a forward looking sensor is required that can operate effectively in a stand off configuration and detect surface laid, flush and buried mines. Reliable detection is required against a background of vegetation and other, surface and buried mines. Reliable detection is required against a background of vegetation and other, surface and buried, clutter. The Remote Minefield Detection System (REMIDS) is a technology demonstration programme funded by the UK Ministry of Defence designed to use an Ultra Wideband Synthetic Aperture Radar (UWBSAR) and a polarimetric infrared camera. The UWBSAR is a 3GHz bandwidth impulse radar with onboard data collection and offline image processing. The UWBSAR has been successfully trialled against landmines. Previous trials have mounted the radar on an airship and employed a conventional side-looking imaging geometry. In contrast, for the trials reported in this paper, the radar was amounted on a trolley to simulate a ground vehicle and operated in a forward-looking mode. The resulting use of an endfire synthetic aperture radar rather than the more conventional broadside aperture is the principal development reported in this paper. This coarsens the resolution and introduces a left-right ambiguity into the data. Previous trials have also highlighted the lack of a comprehensive data set containing controlled targets and a range of clutter conditions. The current trials were therefore conducted on a purpose built 80m test track which contained five different soil types, a range of surface conditions and over 200 targets of varying types and burial depth. The trials campaign collected over 500 data sets by varying the conditions of data collection in terms of polarisation, antenna height, antenna separation, incidence angle, power levels and pulse repetition frequency. The experimental configuration allowed the track of the platform to be repeated to sufficient accuracy to allo- w the synthesis of multiple baselines in the vertical and horizontal. The principal conclusions from the trials analysis are 1) that the data set collected is of good quality and comprehensive in terms of targets and background; 2) the endfire synthetic aperture configuration worked as anticipated; and 3) the left-right ambiguity can be resolved if a suitable antenna configuration is used.
Original languageEnglish
Pages752-754 vol.2
Publication statusPublished - 2003
EventGeoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, 2003. IGARSS '03. Proceedings. 2003 IEEE International -
Duration: 1 Jan 2003 → …


ConferenceGeoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, 2003. IGARSS '03. Proceedings. 2003 IEEE International
Period1/01/03 → …


  • antenna height
  • antenna separation
  • polarisation
  • data acquisition
  • technology demonstration programme
  • infrared imaging
  • remote minefield detection system
  • aperture antennas
  • onboard data collection
  • remote sensing by radar
  • antenna configuration
  • imaging geometry
  • radar polarimetry
  • bandwidth impulse radar
  • experimental configuration
  • incidence angle
  • polarimetric infrared camera
  • pulse repetition frequency
  • left-right ambiguity
  • landmine detection
  • sensors
  • endfire synthetic aperture
  • ground penetrating radar
  • forward looking sensor
  • ultra wideband
  • 3 GHz
  • vehicle mounted system
  • remote sensing
  • synthetic aperture radar
  • offline image processing


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