The U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL), as part of a customer and mission-funded exploratory development program, has been developing a prototype of low-frequency, ultra-wideband (UWB) forward-imaging synthetic aperture radar (SAR) to support the U.S. Army's vision for increased mobility and survivability of unmanned ground vehicle missions. The ability of the UWB radar technology to detect objects under foilage could provide an important obstacle-avoidance capability for robotic vehicles, which could improve the speed and maneuverability of these vehicles and consequently increase the survivability of the U.S. forces. In a recent experiment at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), we exercised the UWB SAR radar in forward-looking mode and collected data to support the investigation.
This paper discusses the signal processing algorithms and techniques that we developed and applied to the recent UWB SAR forward-looking data. The algorithms include motion data processing, self-interference signal (SIR) removal, radio frequency interference (RFI) signal removal, forward-looking image formation, and visualization techniques. We present forward-loking SAR imagery and also volumetric imagery of some targets.