22 - 26 April 2019
Westin Waterfront Hotel
Boston, Massachusetts USA

Tutorial: Signal Processing for Passive Radar

22 April Monday Afternoon Session 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM


Dr. Hongbin Li

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Stevens Institute of Technology

Dr. Braham Himed

RF Technology Branch

Air Force Research Laboratory

Dr. Yimin Zhang

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Temple University


A typical radar is an active radio frequency (RF) sensing system that requires a dedicated transmitter. In contrast, passive radar systems use illuminators of opportunity (IOs), such as wireless communication and broadcast sources, to probe the surveillance area. Passive radar enjoys a number of advantages over its active counterpart. Nevertheless, there are technical and non-technical issues that need to be addressed to fully realize the potential of passive radar. This tutorial is aimed at providing a comprehensive discussion on signal processing techniques for passive radar, covering both classical and recent developments. One focus is to illustrate practical impairments such as noisy reference channels and interference, which are inherent in passive radar, and explore new techniques to mitigate such effects for enhanced sensing performance. Structure-aware sparse reconstruction techniques, which are developed based upon recent advances in compressive sensing, are introduced and are shown to be effective for high-resolution image formation and multi-static observation fusion. Also discussed in the tutorial is sparse reconstruction – based space-time adaptive processing (STAP) for ground clutter suppression that uses group sparse reconstruction methods for clutter profile estimation using a small number of secondary range cells.