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Cfar detection in k-distributed sea clutter

Çetin, Ayşin
Conventional fixed threshold detectors set a fixed threshold based on the overall statistical characteristics of the spatially uniform clutter over all ranges to give a specific probability of false alarm and detection. However, in radar applications clutter statistics are not known a priori. Constant False Alarm Rate (CFAR) techniques provide an adaptive threshold to estimate the clutter statistics and to distinguish targets from clutter. In Cell Averaging CFAR (CA-CFAR) the threshold is controlled by averaging the fixed size CFAR cells surrounding the cell under test. In this thesis, radar detection of targets in sea clutter modelled by compound Kdistribution is examined from a statistical detection viewpoint by Monte Carlo simulations. The performance of CA-CFAR processors is analysed under varying conditions of sea clutter spatial correlation and spikiness for several cases of false alarm probability, the length of cell size used in the CFAR processor and the number of pulses integrated prior to CA-CFAR processor. v The detection performance of CA-CFAR is compared with the performance of fixed threshold detection. The performance evaluations are quantified by CFAR loss. CFAR loss is defined as the increase in average signal to clutter ratio compared to that of fixed threshold, required to achieve a given probability of detection and probability of false alarm. Curves for CFAR loss to the spikiness and spatial correlation of clutter, number of pulses integrated and the length of cell size are presented.