Clutter Phenomenology, Modeling, and Synthesis

  • Overview
  • Course Content

Clutter Phenomenology, Modeling, and Synthesis

Course Description

Radar target detection, estimation, and tracking performance is frequently limited by “clutter,” strong returns generated by the Earth’s surface. Since World War II, considerable effort has been put into developing methods to suppress clutter returns or isolate them from targets, including moving target indication, Doppler filtering, and space-time adaptive processing. Tailoring these technologies to specific radars and modes, and implementing them on deployed radar systems, requires a deep understanding of clutter effects and faithful representation of clutter signals in high-fidelity modeling and simulation tools and hardware-in-the-loop environments. This course begins with a review of surface clutter phenomenology, and continues with a detailed discussion of clutter models commonly employed in radar performance prediction and hardware testing. It culminates by presenting options for real-time generation of synthetic clutter. Exercises serve to reinforce basic concepts.

Course Content


  • Radar clutter overview
  • Land clutter
  • Sea clutter


  • M&S overview
  • M&S environment example
  • Site-specific M&S


  • Scripting
  • Digital Radio Frequency Memory-based environment generation
  • Real-time realistic returns
  • High performance embedded computing

Who Should Attend

This course is designed for engineers, scientists, managers from industry, academia, and government organizations.

Adult professional attending defense tech course

What You Will Learn

  • Temporal and spatial statistics of land and sea clutter
  • Widely-applied mathematical representations of clutter
  • Common approaches to simulating radar clutter simulation
  • Hardware and software options for real-time clutter generation
Radar antenna

How You Will Benefit

  • Learn surface clutter phenomenology.
  • Recognize widely used modeling and simulation methods for clutter.
  • Discover options for real-time generation of synthetic clutter.
  • Taught by Experts in the Field icon
    Taught by Experts in the Field
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    Grow Your Professional Network

The course schedule was well-structured with a mix of lectures, class discussions, and hands-on exercises led by knowledgeable and engaging instructors.

- Abe Kani


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