Proceedings of SPIE, Volume 4373, AeroSense, Orlando, FL (April 2001)
The need for air-to-ground missiles with Autonomous Target Acquisition (ATA) seekers is in large part driven by the failure of pilot-guided bombs in cloudy conditions (such as demonstrated in Kosovo). Passive-millimeter wave (PMMW) sensors have the ability to see through clouds; in fact they tend to show metallic objects (such as mobile ground targets) in high contrast regardless of weather conditions. However, their resolution is very low when compared with other popular ATA sensors such as laser-radar (LADAR). We present an ATA algorithm suite that combines the superior target detection potential of PMMW with the high-quality segmentation and recognition abilities of LADAR. Preliminary detection and segmentation results are presented for a set of image-pairs of military vehicles that were collected for this project using an 89GHz, 18″ aperture PMMW sensor from TRW and a 1.06µ very-high-resolution LADAR from Lockheed Martin Vought Systems.
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