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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
RRY080 - Radar systems and applications
Radarsystem och tillämpningar
Syllabus adopted 2019-02-07 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPWPS
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Electrical Engineering, Engineering Physics

Teaching language: English
Application code: 29118
Open for exchange students: Yes
Block schedule: D+
Maximum participants: 48

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0108 Examination 7,5 c Grading: TH   7,5 c   03 Jun 2020 pm J,  21 Aug 2020 pm J

In programs



Lars Ulander

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In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

Basic knowledge in electromagnetic fields, Fourier analysis, and mathematical statistics.


This course describes the main properties of radar systems, and how these are selected in designing and optimizing radar systems. System performance is analyzed based on electromagnetic wave propagation, sub-system characteristics, digital signal processing, and statistical detection theory, where different radar systems are used to illustrate the practical applications of the theory.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

* describe how radars can be used to measure range with time-of-flight and radial velocity with Doppler shift
* define and calculate resolution in time, Doppler frequency, and angle
* understand the Nyquist sampling theorem and describe the effects of undersampling
* define and compare coherent and non-coherent radar systems
* draw a simple block diagram for a radar system and describe the roles of the different components
* derive the radar equations (single and multiple pulses, search radar equation)
* use the radar equations to calculate signal-to-noise ratios and received powers for various radar systems
* use simple formulas to calculate radar cross-section from different objects
* derive for simple metallic radar retro-reflectors the effective area with the high-frequency approximation
* describe qualitatively the backscatter from a metallic sphere as a function of frequency, polarization and size
* use surface and volume backscattering coefficients in calculations of received power, signal-to-clutter ratio and clutter-to-noise ratio
* describe how the atmosphere affects the propagation of radar waves
* calculate the distance to the Earth's radio horizon
* describe the effect of multi-path and calculate the received power for simple geometries relative to its free-space value
* understand the use of random variables to describe noise in radar systems
* derive the matched filter
* derive the probability density function of Rayleigh fading
* calculate required signal-to-noise ratio for a given probability of detection and probability of false-alarm, and for different signal models (Swerling cases)
* describe what is meant by pulse compression
* calculate the output after pulse compression for simple waveforms
* understand how waveform design can improve detection performance
* choose appropriate waveforms for different uses and quantify their performance
* describe the principles of SAR, ISAR and pulse-Doppler radar, calculate resolution for different systems
* define different parameters for describing a system's ambiguity function and calculate those numerically
* be aware of different applications of radar systems
* describe why radar is particularly suited for certain applications compared to other techniques
* understand the trade-offs involved in design of radar systems for different applications
* apply principles of radar system design and analysis to different applications and to quantify performance and suggest improvements in design


1. Introduction
- Time-of-flight and Doppler shift measurements
- Coherent vs. non-coherent radar systems
- Antenna gain and beamwidth
- Pulse repetition frequency
- Radar cross section
- Radar equation
2. Radar systems
- Fourier transform
- Nyquist sampling theorem
- Radar hardware blocks
- Antennas
3. Radar scattering
- Simple and complex objects
- Frequency and polarization effects
- Ground and volume scattering
4. Wave propagation
- Reflection, refraction and attenuation
- Propagation in the atmosphere
- Multi-path effects
5. Detection of radar signals
- Quadrature demodulation
- Detectors and integration
- Signal and noise models
6. Waveforms
- Generalised radar signals
- Matched filter
- Pulse compression
7. Radar performance
- Radar ambiguity function
- Signal-to-noise ratio
- Search radar equation
8. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR), part 1
9. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR), part 2
10. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR), part 3
11. Clutter suppression by Doppler filtering
- Pulse-Doppler radar
- MTI radar
12. Radar system examples
- Weather radar, spaceborne radar etc


The course will be based on lectures and exercise classes. There will also be laboratory work, home assignments and one or two visits to radar industry.


"Radar Foundations for Imaging and Advanced Concepts" by Roger J. Sullivan (2004). Additional parts from "Principles of Modern Radar, Basic Principles" by Richards, Sheer and Holm (2010), and "Fundamentals of Radar Signal Processing" by Mark A. Richards (2014). All books are available as e-books from Chalmers Library. Extra material may be provided.

Examination including compulsory elements

Written exam, laboratory work and hand-ins.

Page manager Published: Thu 04 Feb 2021.