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An algorithm for time shift estimation of radio pulses received by spatially distributed sensors

Keywords:

A.G. Tashlinskii – Dr. Sc. (Eng.), Professor, Head of Department «Radio Engineering», Ulyanovsk State Technical University. E-mail: tag@ulstu.ru N.V. Toporkov – Ph. D. (Eng.), Head of Department, JSC «Kaluga Scientific Research Radio Engineering Institute». E-mail: ntoporkov@yandex.ru T.P. Potapova – Head of Sector, JSC «Kaluga Scientific Research Radio Engineering Institute». E-mail: ptp7@yandex.ru M.G. Tsarev – Post-graduate Student, Ulyanovsk State Technical University. E-mail: michael.tsaryov@gmail.com


The problem of estimating the time of arrival of radio pulses in noisy conditions is one of the most important tasks of radar and electronic warfare systems, where it is used to locate the signal source. The problem of measuring the arrival time difference between pulses received by different elements of antenna array is considered as the problem of estimating their time alignment parameters. Real-time recursive algorithms for estimation of the difference in arrival times of radio pulses received by spatially distributed sensors, such as antenna array elements, are proposed. The algorithms based on stochastic gradient descent optimization do not require large computational cost and any preliminary assessment of the signal parameters. They are effective in signal processing under a priori uncertainty, robust to impulse noise. Estimates evaluated by the algorithms converge to the optimal values at weak conditions. The processing can be carried out using both the pulse envelope and the unfiltered signal counts. The experimental results obtained using real and semi-real data, i.e. data from an experiment in an anechoic chamber. Evaluation of the algorithm using simulated and real experimental data shows high performance and high accuracy of time shift estimation for broadband radio pulses. It also shows that the algorithm is robust while processing unfiltered signals.
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