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Millimeter-wave radar phenomenology of power lines and a polarimetric detection algorithm

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2 Author(s)
Sarabandi, K. ; Dept. of Electr. Eng. & Comput. Sci., Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor, MI, USA ; Moonsoo Park

The radar phenomenology of high-voltage power lines and cables is studied for examining the feasibility of detecting power lines along the path of a low-flying aircraft using a millimeter-wave radar system. For this purpose, polarimetric backscatter measurements of power line samples of different diameters and strand arrangements were performed over a wide range of incidence angles with very fine increments at 94 GHz. Also, similar polarimetric backscatter measurements were conducted for cylinders of the same radii and lengths as the power line samples for identifying the scattering features caused by the braiding structure of the power lines. In addition, the effects of a thin layer of water and a layer of ice over the power line surface on its polarimetric scattering behavior are studied by repeating the polarimetric backscatter measurements. Based on this phenomenological study, a polarimetric detection algorithm that makes use of the scattering features caused by the braided structure of power lines is proposed. It is shown that the proposed algorithm is capable of detecting power lines in a relatively strong clutter background with a poor signal-to-clutter ratio. The performance of the algorithm is demonstrated experimentally using a rough asphalt surface and a vegetation foliage as sample clutter backgrounds

Published in:

Antennas and Propagation, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:47 ,  Issue: 12 )

Date of Publication:

Dec 1999

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