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Syllabus for

Academic year
RRY080 - Radar systems and applications
Syllabus adopted 2013-02-14 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPWPS
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Not passed
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Electrical Engineering, Engineering Physics

Teaching language: English
Open for exchange students
Block schedule: D

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0108 Examination 7,5 c Grading: TH   7,5 c   28 May 2014 pm M,  14 Jan 2014 am M,  21 Aug 2014 pm V

In programs



Docent  Leif Eriksson
Professor  Lars Ulander

Course evaluation:


For single subject courses within Chalmers programmes the same eligibility requirements apply, as to the programme(s) that the course is part of.

Course specific prerequisites

Basic knowledge in electromagnetic field theory.


This course describes the main properties of radar systems, and how these are selected in designing and optimizing radar systems. System performance is analyzed using concepts from digital signal processing, 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 time-of-flight and Doppler shift
* define resolution and accuracy, and be able to quantify them from a series of measurements
* define the meaning of the term coherent, and be able to compare the performance of coherent with non-coherent radar systems
* draw a simple block diagram for a radar system, and describe the roles of the different components
* be able to derive the radar equation
* use the radar equation to calculate signal-to-noise ratios and received powers for various radar systems
* use simple formulas to give rough estimates for radar cross-section from different objects
* derive for simple radar retro-reflectors the effective area
* describe qualitatively the backscatter from a sphere as a function of frequency polarization, size and orientation
* be able to use surface and volume backscattering coefficients in calculations of received power 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 be able to 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 form and properties of a matched filter
* derive the statistics for Rayleigh fading
* calculate required signal-to-noise ratio for a given probaility of detection and probability of false-alarm, and for different signal models (Swerling cases) and detector types.
* describe what is meant by pulse compression
* calculate the performance of pulse compression for simple waveforms
* understand how waveform design can improve detection performance
* choose appropriate waveforms for different uses and be able to quantify their performance
* decribe the Nyquist sampling theorem and describe the effects of undersampling
* describe the principles behind Pulse-Doppler radar, ISAR and SAR
* define different parameters for describing a system's impulse response (including ISAR, SAR and the Pulse-Doppler ambiguity function) and to be able to 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, signal-to-noise ratio
2. Radar systems
- Fourier transform
- Nyquist sampling theorem
- Radar hardware blocks
- Antennas
3. Radar scattering
- Simple and complex objects
- Frequency and polarization effects
- Terrain 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. Inverse synthetic aperture radar (ISAR)
9. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR), part 1
10. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR), part 2
Clutter suppression by Doppler filtering
- Pulse-Doppler radar
- MTI radar
Radar system examples
- Weather radar, spaceborne radar etc


The course will be based on lectures with theoretical and practical (computer) exercise classes. There will be laboratory work and a visit to radar industry.


"Radar Foundations for Imaging and Advanced Concepts" by Roger J. Sullivan (List Price: US$95.00 ~ 800 kr). The book is also available as an e-book from Chalmers Library. Additional material provided by lecturer.


Written exam, computer exercises and laboratory work.

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.