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Technology for the 14- and 35-GHz Second-Generation Precipitation Radar (PR-2) is currently being developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jet Propulsion Laboratory to support the development of future spaceborne radar missions. PR-2 will rely on high-performance onboard processing techniques in order to improve the observation capabilities (swath width, spatial resolution, and precision) of a low-Earth orbiting rainfall radar. Using field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs), we have developed a prototype spaceborne processor and controller module that will support advanced capabilities in the PR-2 such as autotargeting of rain and compression of rainfall science data. In this paper, we describe the new technology components designed for the onboard processor, including an FPGA-based 40 × 109 op/s pulse-compression receiver/filter with a range sidelobe performance of -72 dB, and an adaptive scanning controller which yields a six-fold increase in the number of radar looks over areas of precipitation.
Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:43 , Issue: 4 )
Date of Publication: April 2005