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Waveform-Diverse Multiple-Input Multiple-Output Radar Imaging Measurements
Stewart, Kyle Bradley

2016, Doctor of Philosophy, Ohio State University, Electrical and Computer Engineering.
Multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) radar is an emerging set of technologies designed to extend the capabilities of multi-channel radar systems. While conventional radar architectures emphasize the use of antenna array beamforming to maximize real-time power on target, MIMO radar systems instead attempt to preserve some degree of independence between their received signals and to exploit this expanded matrix of target measurements in the signal-processing domain. Specifically the use of sparse “virtual” antenna arrays may allow MIMO radars to achieve gains over traditional multi-channel systems by post-processing diverse received signals to implement both transmit and receive beamforming at all points of interest within a given scene. MIMO architectures have been widely examined for use in radar target detection, but these systems may yet be ideally suited to real and synthetic aperture radar imaging applications where their proposed benefits include improved resolutions, expanded area coverage, novel modes of operation, and a reduction in hardware size, weight, and cost.

While MIMO radar's theoretical benefits have been well established in the literature, its practical limitations have not received great attention thus far. The effective use of MIMO radar techniques requires a diversity of signals, and to date almost all MIMO system demonstrations have made use of time-staggered transmission to satisfy this requirement. Doing so is reliable but can be prohibitively slow. Waveform-diverse systems have been proposed as an alternative in which multiple, independent waveforms are broadcast simultaneously over a common bandwidth and separated on receive using signal processing. Operating in this way is much faster than its time-diverse equivalent, but finding a set of suitable waveforms for this technique has proven to be a difficult problem. In light of this, many have questioned the practicality of MIMO radar imaging and whether or not its theoretical benefits may be extended to real systems.

Work in this writing focuses specifically on the practical aspects of MIMO radar imaging systems and provides performance data sourced from experimental measurements made using a four-channel software-defined MIMO radar platform. Demonstrations of waveform-diverse imaging data products are provided and compared directly against time-diverse equivalents in order to assess the performance of prospective MIMO waveforms. These are sourced from the pseudo-noise, short-term shift orthogonal, and orthogonal frequency multiplexing signal families while experimental results demonstrate waveform-diverse measurements of polarimetric radar cross section, top-down stationary target images, and finally volumetric MIMO synthetic aperture radar imagery. The data presented represents some of the first available concerning the overall practicality of waveform-diverse MIMO radar architectures, and results suggest that such configurations may achieve a reasonable degree of performance even in the presence of significant practical limitations.

Joel Johnson (Advisor)
Robert Burkholder (Committee Member)
Emre Ertin (Committee Member)
289 p.

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Stewart, K. (2016). Waveform-Diverse Multiple-Input Multiple-Output Radar Imaging Measurements. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from

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Stewart, Kyle. "Waveform-Diverse Multiple-Input Multiple-Output Radar Imaging Measurements." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Ohio State University, 2016. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 25 Sep 2017.

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Stewart, Kyle "Waveform-Diverse Multiple-Input Multiple-Output Radar Imaging Measurements." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Ohio State University, 2016.


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