A new radar technique could help to improve the detection of small unmanned aerial vehicles, according to SRC Inc. The company received a patent for its interleaved beam coherent radar apparatus and processing method in October.
Small UAV detection is difficult because it requires the system to have excellent minimum detectable velocity (MDV) and Doppler resolution, which allows a radar to distinguish between objects moving at different speeds. But improvements to Doppler resolution and minimum detectable velocity come at the expense of a high scan rate, said Daniel Culkin, SRC director of business development for advanced radar programs.
SRC’s new technique is able to scan at a high rate while retaining Doppler resolution and MDV, said Culkin, who is also the patent holder of the technique.
“While legacy radars with coherent Doppler processing would send multiple pulses in a single direction while receiving and processing the reflected energy, this new technique allows for the radar pulses to be sent in multiple directions in an interleaved fashion, and processed in a complex way,” he wrote in an email.
Culkin would not comment on potential customers or when the technique might be used in the field. Photo Credit: Defense Dept.