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This paper describes an algorithm for land mine detection using sensor data generated by a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) system that uses edge histogram descriptors for feature extraction and a possibilistic K -nearest neighbors (K-NNs) rule for confidence assignment. The algorithm demonstrated the best performance among several high-performance algorithms in extensive testing on a large real-world datasets associated with the difficult problem of land mine detection. The superior performance of the algorithm is attributed to the use of the possibilistic K -NN algorithm, thereby providing important evidence supporting the use of possibilistic methods in real-world applications. The GPR produces a 3-D array of intensity values, representing a volume below the surface of the ground. First, a computationally inexpensive prescreening algorithm for anomaly detection is used to focus attention and identify candidate signatures that resemble mines. The identified regions of interest are processed further by a feature extraction algorithm to capture their salient features. We use translation-invariant features that are based on the local edge distribution of the 3-D GPR signatures. Specifically, each 3-D signature is divided into subsignatures, and the local edge distribution for each subsignature is represented by a histogram. Next, the training signatures are clustered to identify prototypes. The main idea is to identify few prototypes that can capture the variations of the signatures within each class. These variations could be due to different mine types, different soil conditions, different weather conditions, etc. Fuzzy memberships are assigned to these representatives to capture their degree of sharing among the mines and false alarm classes. Finally, a possibilistic K-NN-based rule is used to assign a confidence value to distinguish true detections from false alarms. The proposed algorithm is implemented and integrated within a complete - - land mine prototype system. It is trained, field-tested, evaluated, and compared using a large-scale cross-validation experiment that uses a diverse dataset acquired from four outdoor test sites at different geographic locations. This collection covers over 41 807 m2 of ground and includes 1593 mine encounters.