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Precision large scale air traffic surveillance using IMM/assignment estimators

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3 Author(s)
Wang, H. ; Dept. of Electr. & Syst. Eng., Connecticut Univ., Storrs, CT, USA ; Kirubarajan, T. ; Bar-Shalom, Y.

We present the development and implementation of a multisensor-multitarget tracking algorithm for large scale air traffic surveillance based on interacting multiple model (IMM) state estimation combined with a 2-dimensional assignment for data association. The algorithm can be used to track a large number of targets from measurements obtained with a large number of radars. The use of the algorithm is illustrated on measurements obtained from 5 FAA radars, which are asynchronous, heterogeneous, and geographically distributed over a large area. Both secondary radar data (beacon returns from cooperative targets) as well as primary radar data (skin returns from noncooperative targets) are used. The target IDs from the beacon returns are not used in the data association. The surveillance region includes about 800 targets that exhibit different types of motion. The performance of an IMM estimator with linear motion models is compared with that of the Kalman filter (KF). A number of performance measures that can be used on real data without knowledge of the ground truth are presented for this purpose. It is shown that the IMM estimator performs better than the KF. The advantage of fusing multisensor data is quantified. It is also shown that the computational requirements in the multisensor case are lower than in single sensor case, Finally, an IMM estimator with a nonlinear motion model (coordinated turn) is shown to further improve the performance during the maneuvering periods over the IMM with linear models

Published in:

Aerospace and Electronic Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:35 ,  Issue: 1 )