Fundamentals of IRST Sensing

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Requirements & Materials

Fundamentals of IRST Sensing

Course Description

This course introduces the science and technologies underlying infrared search and track (IRST) systems. IRSTs represent a class of passive infrared systems whose functions aim to detect, locate, and track objects embedded in complex and dynamically varying backgrounds. As an introductory course, the lectures and topics covered focus on providing the necessary background to understand the drivers for system design requirements and operational system performance. Course topics emphasize basic infrared (IR) physics related to targets, backgrounds, and atmospherics, system design principles, component technologies and performance metrics.

Course Content


  • Target signatures
  • Atmospheric propagation
  • Background clutter


  • Basic system components and function
  • Component technology review
  • Operational system characteristics
  • Operational performance


  • System requirements derivation
  • Design analysis
  • Technology trades


  • Detection algorithms
  • Discrimination methods
  • Tracking algorithms


  • Performance analysis metrics
  • Modeling & simulation
  • Test and evaluation methods
Requirements & Materials



  • Course book containing compilation of slides

Session Details

  • Special Discounts: Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) employees are eligible to receive a discount.  If you are a GTRI employee, please go to the Organizational Development website and look for the coupon code under GT Professional Development. Review coupon instructions for more information.

Who Should Attend

This course is designed for engineers, scientists, system analysts, defense professionals, and technical program managers.

Defense technology professional attending professional short course

What You Will Learn

  • Fundamentals of IRST operation
  • Phenomenological drivers for IRST design and operation
  • IRST system engineering principles
  • Performance analysis methods and metrics
  • IRST test and evaluation procedures
Defense tech professionals attending a short course

How You Will Benefit

  • Review the phenomenological principles underlying IRST operation.
  • Understand IRST operational principles and constraints.
  • Understand IRST system engineering and requirement drivers.
  • Explore IRST performance analysis methods.
  • Review test and evaluation techniques.
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    Taught by Experts in the Field

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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