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A State-of-the-art radar cross section system controller
B. Volkmer (Scientific-Atlanta),A.J. Wasilewski (Scientific-Atlanta), G.B. Melson (Scientific-Atlanta), J. Medina (Scientific-Atlanta), J.L. Bradberry (Scientific-Atlanta), P. Beavers (Scientific-Atlanta), November 1987

This paper explores a design approach to RCS measurements as required for the radar backscatter community. Background will be provided as to the approach and the measurement system experience of the RCS system design team. This will include the approach to computer networking, multiple range configurations and data reduction schemes. The solution under development will detail some of the requirements for the controllers and peripherals needed for the task. System design goals such as CPU independent software design, real time data acquisition and status display, multiple CPU and radar front end networks, system resource control and dynamic graphics design will be explored.

Antenna calibrations using pulsed-CW measurements and the planar near-field method
A. Repjar (National Bureau of Standards),D. Kremer (National Bureau of Standards), November 1987

For over a decade the National Bureau of Standards has utilized the Planar Near-field Method to accurately determine antenna gain, polarization and antenna patterns. Measurements of near-field amplitudes and phases over a planar surface are routinely obtained and processed to calculate these parameters. The measurement system includes using a cw source connected to an accessible antenna port and a two channel receiver to obtain both amplitude and phase of the measurement signal with respect to a fixed reference signal. Many radar systems operate in a pulsed-cw mode and it is very difficult if not impossible to inject a cw signal at a desired antenna port in order to calibrate the antenna. As a result it is highly desirable to obtain accurate near-field amplitude and phase data for an antenna in the pulsed-cw mode so that the antenna far-field parameters can be determined. Whether operating in the cw or pulsed-cw modes, one must be concerned with calibrating the measurement system by determining its linearity and phase measurement accuracy over a wide dynamic range. Tests were recently conducted at NBS for these purposes using a precision rotary vane attenuator and calibrated phase shifter. Such tests would apply not only to measurement systems for determining antenna parameters but also to systems for radar cross section (RCS) measurements. The measurement setup will be discussed and results will be presented.

A Comparison of three field probing techniques
H.C.M. Yuan (Hughes Aircraft Company), November 1987

The recent activity and study of the compact range has been increasing the past few years. Both radar cross section (RCS) and antenna measurements have been conducted in the compact range. Important research and analytical investigation has also been done in the design and construction of the reflectors so characteristic of these types of ranges. Edge diffraction from the reflector has been studied and characterized by methods of geometrical optics, geometrical theory of diffraction, physical optics and physical theory of diffraction. Treatment of edge diffraction effects on the reflector have included serrations, rolled edges, and absorbing materials. The primary goal is to obtain as perfect a plane wave as possible in the enclosed chamber with reduction of edge diffraction from the reflector.

The Effects of an offset fed parabolic reflector on polarization
C.E. Raiff (McDonnell Douglas Astronautics Company), November 1987

The offset fed parabola is one type of reflector used in compact radar ranges. Cross-polarization problems have been noted when a parabola is used in near field applications. A good understanding of the near field cross-polarization effects was needed to evaluate this type of reflector for a compact range. We found that the polarization vector was rotated differently at each location in the "quiet zone." The polarization vector rotation is due to the parabolic curvature. In addition, a mathematical model was derived that compares well with the data. A theoretical study of how the RCS measurements of a wing are affected is presented.

Formulation of proper standards in radar polarimetry
A.B. Kostinski (University of Illinois at Chicago),W.M. Boerner (University of Illinois at Chicago), November 1987

We have found several crucial inconsistencies in the basic equations of radar polarimetry which are rather common in the current literature on the subject. In particular, the pertinent formulations of the polarization state definitions given in the IEEE/ANSI Standards 149-1979 are in error. These and other inconsistencies and conceptual errors are analyzed very carefully in this presentation. We provide the correct formulae for the proposed revision of the polarimetric standards together with a well-defined and consistent procedure for measuring target scattering matrices in both, mono-static and bi-static arrangements. Further, the proposed procedure can be applied to an arbitrary measurement process in any general elliptical polarization basis.

Coherent signal measurement of time modulated antenna pattern
W. Morchin (Boeing Aerospace Company),J.P. Braun (Boeing Aerospace Company), W.A. Schneider (Boeing Aerospace Company), November 1987

The Boeing V-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft is a candidate platform for use as an airborne surveillance radar system. The impact of radar RF energy scattering from the aircraft's large propellers is a concern due to the potential for interference with an airborne pulse doppler radar where frequency changes are used to discriminate moving targets from ground clutter. In order to ascertain the effects of the scattering, a unique measurement system was devised for recording the time modulated antenna pattern of an array antenna.

Making precision RCS measurements on a compact range using an HP8510 and an RF switching network
A.L. Lindsay (Harris Corporation), November 1987

The development of a high efficiency compact range has made it possible to consider alternative equipment for making radar cross section measurements. Historically, high power radars were required to make measurements on low efficiency, high clutter ranges. Their high power and narrow pulse capability was essential in making precision measurements. Such instrumentation is complex and expensive. There is, however, a relatively inexpensive approach which uses test equipment commonly found in the laboratory. It is centered around an HP8510 network analyzer and an RF switching network.

A Method of evaluating conductive coatings for RCS models
A. Dominek (The Ohio State University),H. Shamansky (The Ohio State University), R. Burkholder (The Ohio State University), R. Wood (NASA Langley Research Center), W.T. Hodges (NASA Langley Research Center), November 1987

A novel method for evaluating conductive coatings used for radar cross section (RCS) scale models is presented. The method involves the RCS measurement of a short circuited cavity whose interior is coated with the material under study. The dominant scattering from such a structure occurs from the cavity rim and surface walls internal to the cavity. The method of conductivity testing has excellent sensitivity due to the energy that couples in and out of the cavity. This energy undergoes many reflections with the interior walls and thus very small losses can be detected. Calculations and measurements are shown for several different types of coatings, including coatings of silver, copper, nickel and zinc.

Near field measurement of very large antennas
P.J. Wood (Canadian Astronautics Limited), November 1986

Conventional pattern measurements are difficult to apply when the aperture is very large (250 lambda or more), particularly in the case of a relatively fragile antenna structure intended for a space application. Near field techniques can offer a solution, but may need a relatively large R.F. enclosure and custom instrumentation. This paper examines various alternative approaches in the case of the 15 m planar array under development at CAL for Radarsat. Specifically, the techniques under consideration include planar probing, cylindrical probing, planar cylindrical probing, intermediate range spherical probing, and some special variants. It is shown that the fact that the Radarsat antenna generates shaped beams as opposed to pencil beams impacts the relative accuracies achieved by these techniques to a very significant extent. The data collection and processing time, the size of the anechoic chamber needed, and the instrumentation requirement are also important considerations.

RADARSAT SAR antenna testing requirements and facility
L. Martins-Camelo (Spar Aerospace Ltd.),G. Seguin (Spar Aerospace Ltd.), November 1986

The Radarsat synthetic aperture radar (SAR) antenna is baselined to be a large slotted waveguide planar array, with a rectangular aperture of dimensions 1.5m x 15m. At the nominal frequency of 5.3 GHz, the dimensions in terms of wavelengths are approximately 26.5 lambda x 265 lambda. The usual 2D(squared) divided by lambda formula yields a far-field range length of at least 7.96 Km, which is far beyond the range lengths currently available to the program. A more conservative design would at least double that number, rendering a far-field measurement concept all but impracticable. (*) This work was carried out for the Radarsat Project Technical Office of the Communications Research Centre, Canadian Department of Communications, under DSS contract OSR84-00175, funded by the Canadian Department of Energy, Mines, and Resources.

Modern antenna test facility for new generation space-borne antennas
R.C. Whitehouse (Spar Aerospace Ltd.),L.A. Wegrowicz (Spar Aerospace Ltd.), T. Pavlasek (McGill University), November 1986

Spar Aerospace, along with other aerospace companies, have experienced an evolution in the development of spacecraft antennas over the past 20 years. Spacecraft antennas originated as either simple antennas providing figure of revolution patterns for spin stabilized communication satellites or simple monopoles for telemetry and command purposes. Communication satellite antennas later evolved to shape beam reflector type configurations. Spaceborne antennas are now moving to even larger reflector antennas and to planar arrays for radar applications. This evolution in spaceborne antennas has been followed by a parallel evolution in antenna test facilities and facilities requirements.

Prime focus feeds for the compact range
J.R. Jones (Scientific-Atlanta), November 1986

Prime focus fed paraboloidal reflector compact ranges are used to provide plane wave illumination indoors at small range lengths for antenna and radar cross-section measurements. The "quiet zone", which is the region of space within which a uniform plane wave is created, has previously been limited to a small fraction of the reflector size. A typical quiet zone might be six feet by four feet for a ten foot radius reflector.

VHF/UHF short pulse RCS measurement system
J.F. Aubin (Flam & Russell, Inc.),R. Flam (Flam & Russell, Inc.), November 1986

Flam & Russell, Inc. has developed a short pulse radar cross section measurement system (Model 8101) which operates from VHF up to L band. This paper describes operation of the system, with emphasis given to the design considerations necessary to minimize susceptibility to a number of problems that have imposed serious limitations on achievable sensitivity at lower frequencies in pulsed RCS outdoor measurement systems. These problems have been, to a great extent, solved in the current system design. The system has been designed for use in outdoor range facilities with a variety of target sizes. A w ideband, high power transmitter is capable of producing pulses 50-350 nanoseconds wide at peak levels of up to several kilowatts. A phase coherent wide bandwidth receiver provides amplitude and phase information at video for sampling. A maximum of four independently located range gates may be selected and set with a resolution of one nanosecond. The data collection system features a three-tier processor structure for dedicated position data processing, target data processing, and system I/O and control, respectively. A real time display of RCS versus position coordinate is available to the operator, as well as a real time indication of the presence of radio frequency interference (RFI). A 60 foot reflector antenna equipped with a duo polarized feed provides full scattering matrix capability with 30 dB of polarization isolation and better than 50 dB of "ghost" suppression. Careful antenna structure and transmission line design has eliminated reverberation or "pulse ringing" problems. A radar "figure of merit" (ratio of peak transmitted power to receiver noise floor for the required pulse bandwidth) of better than 150 dB has been achieved.

Applications of ISAR imaging techniques to near-field RCS measurements
E.V. Sager (System Planning Corporation),J.C. Davis (System Planning Corporation), R.J. Sullivan (System Planning Corporation), November 1986

This paper discusses some of the applications of high-resolution coherent radar image processing techniques in unimproved indoor facilities. The techniques are particularly useful in situations where traditional indoor range chambers are unavailable or impractical. Experiments in an 18-foot-high warehouse building have shown that useful measurements can be made at close quarters, in a high-clutter environment.

Measurement of element pattern and its usage in the development of multi-beam arrays
P. Kirshner (ELTA Electronic Industries),I. Oz (ELTA Electronic Industries), November 1986

Electronic scanning phased arrays are being used more and more in radar, EW and communication systems. The development of such an array can be divided into two separate parts: development of the radiating elements and development of the beam forming network. The development of these two parts is often done in parallel and the radiating elements should always be developed taking into consideration the whole array and not only single elements.

RCS measurements at VHF/UHF frequencies
J.M. Ralston (System Planning Corporation), November 1986

In this paper we consider those factors having primary impact on submicrowave RCS measurements in outdoor (ground-bounce range) environments, including: 1. The target illumination problem, reflecting fundamental limits on antenna size and height 2. Measurement sensitivity as limited by thermal noise and radar frequency interference (RFI) 3. Antenna selection at VHF frequencies 4. Ground-bounce effects near Brewster's angle. 5. Clutter (due to either terrain or target support) and clutter suppression techniques. Some improvements to basic RCS measurement range design are analyzed in detail, with emphasis on mobile (variable range) antenna/radar systems.

Experimental techniques for the radar cross section measurements of complex structures
G. Ratte (Laval University),G.Y. Delisle (Laval University), M. Lecours (Laval University), November 1986

Prediction methods currently being developed for estimating the Radar Cross Section (RCS) of a complex target are based on the concurrent use of different numerical techniques each being employed in the region where it performs best. Since the high frequency techniques and the numerical methods used in the computation must deal with important rapid phase and amplitude fluctuations of the resultant scattered field, it is sometimes very difficult or impossible to know to what extent the computed solution is valid, unless measurements are available for comparison purposes.

A Broadband, inexpensive, KA-band pulsed radar system
W.D. Burnside (The Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory),D. Jones (The Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory), M. Gilreath (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), P. Bohley (The Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory), November 1986

There has been much interest recently in Ka-band scattering measurements. Although Ka-band components are steadily improving, one is presently limited to narrow bandwidths (2 GHz) for higher power (more than 100 milliwatts) applications. If the whole wavelength bandwidth was useable, one could scan the target in frequency, transform to the time domain and simulate a very narrow pulse illuminating the target. With such a system, one could identify scattering centers separated by just an inch or so. * This work was supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia under Grant NSG 1613 and Sandia National Laboratories under Contract No. 58-3465.

Monostatic and bistatic scattering by metal ogival target support
A. Lai (The Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory),W.D. Burnside (The Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory), November 1986

The ogival target-support pedestal as shown in Figure 1 is claimed to have a low radar cross section (RCS); yet, it can handle very large and heavy structures. This paper attempts to find out whether this claim is true through analysis as well as measurements. The pedestal backscatter is just one aspect of this study. Another more serious issue is associated with the bistatic scattering by the pedestal which influences the target illumination. * This work was supported in part by the National Aeronautic and Space Administration, Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia, under Grant NSG-1613 with The Ohio State University Research Foundation.

Measurement of doubly curved reflector antennas
S.H. Lim (Andrew Antenna Company Ltd.),R. Boyko (Andrew Antenna Company Ltd.), November 1986

This paper describes the mechanical as well as electrical measurement of doubly curved reflector antennas. The techniques developed for measurement of the new Canadian RAMP Primary Surveillance Radar antenna are described. Instead of a conventional full size template fixture to measure the antenna contour accuracy, an optical twin-theodolite method is used. The problems of the method are discussed and a new simplified analysis for calculating reflector error of doubly curved antennas is presented. Reflector errors are calculated and displayed concurrent with the actual measurements. The measurement of primary and secondary patterns for such antennas are described. Included are brief descriptions of the improved Andrew pattern test range and anechoic chamber facilities.
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