Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Joshua Ash (Committee Member), Frederick Garber (Committee Member), Michael Saville (Advisor)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)


Synthetic aperture radar (SAR) is an invaluable tool for detection of ground moving targets when combined with processing techniques of ground moving target indication (GMTI). This work investigates a simulation methodology for studying impact of site-specific ground clutter on SAR-GMTI performance. A terrain model is proposed and is based on digital terrain elevation data (DTED) and national land-use land-cover data (NLCD) as provided by the US Geological Survey. The proposed physical optics simulation method capitalizes on high-fidelity digital target models in combination with the proposed terrain model. SAR phase history is generated for a moving commercial target in situ of site specific clutter. The normalized radar cross-section (NRCS) clutter is modeled according to empirical random processes. As SAR imagery and GMTI detection performance depend on clutter, the well-known displaced phase center antenna (DPCA) algorithm is applied to test the performance of the SAR-GMTI algorithm. A Sobel gradient edge-detection technique is used to discern target energy from ground clutter in the SAR image as a means to estimate signal-to-noise-plus-interference ratio (SINR). The proposed model is shown to be suitable for studying the effects of measured clutter on SAR-GMTI performance.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Electrical Engineering

Year Degree Awarded