Principles of Pulse-Doppler Radar

Course Description

This course provides a fundamental understanding of pulse-Doppler radar and how it is used to detect moving targets in the presence of background clutter. After a brief refresher of basic radar principles, the course describes the Doppler shift, how Doppler frequency is measured by a coherent radar, and the range and Doppler extents of the interfering clutter from the perspective of an airborne radar. We then explain the concepts of ambiguities and blind zones and their implications toward clutter folding, probability of detection, search time, and the need for pulse-repetition frequency (PRF) variation. We describe the three major PRF regimes – high PRF, medium PRF, and low PRF – with particular emphasis on medium PRF issues, such as blind zones, ambiguity resolution, and PRF selection. Fundamental signal processing theory is provided for moving target indication (MTI) and Doppler processing. Related airborne radar modes such as ground moving target indicator (GMTI) and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) are described to show similarities and differences with pulse-Doppler. The course also describes detection functions and issues in the context of pulse-Doppler waveforms, as well as implications of hardware errors, surface radar implementations, and operation in electronic warfare environments. Exercises are provided to help reinforce some of the basic concepts presented in the lectures.

Course ID: DEF 3509A
Course Format: Classroom

Available Classroom Sections

There are no available sections for this course. Please check back later.

View previous sections
View Previous Sections
CRN Start date End date Format Location Cost
15476 Feb 17, 2015 Feb 19, 2015 Classroom Atlanta, Georgia $1,750
16249 Feb 23, 2016 Feb 25, 2016 Classroom Atlanta, Georgia $1,750
16250 Apr 5, 2016 Apr 7, 2016 Classroom Denver, Colorado $1,750
17056 Feb 7, 2017 Feb 9, 2017 Classroom Atlanta, Georgia $1,750
18229 Feb 6, 2018 Feb 8, 2018 Classroom Atlanta, Georgia $1,750

Special Discounts

GTRI employees are eligible for a discount on this course.  If you are a GTRI employee, please go to and look under “GT Professional Development” for a coupon code to use when checking out.

Note: Coupon codes must be applied during checkout and cannot be redeemed after your checkout is complete. Only one coupon code can be used per shopping cart.

Who Should Attend

Engineers, scientists, managers from industry, academia and government organizations

How You Will Benefit

  • Compute the Doppler shift because of a radar and target motion
  • Estimate the range extent and Doppler extent of mainlobe and sidelobe clutter
  • Determine whether a target falls in a region of mainlobe or sidelobe clutter as a function of PRF
  • Resolve range ambiguities with multiple PRFs
  • Recognize the relative strengths and limitations of high, medium, and low PRF operation; estimate range and Doppler resolution
  • Generate blind zone charts and clutter spectra using models provided with the course
  • Identify and assess hardware limitations on performance
  • Identify relevant electronic attack and electronic protection techniques


  • Basic radar concepts
  • The Doppler shift and clutter spectrum
  • High, medium and low PRF regimes
  • MTI and Doppler processing
  • Pulse compression
  • Target detection, clutter and CFAR
  • GMTI and space-time-adaptive processing
  • Synthetic aperture radar
  • Electronic protection



  • Textbook Airborne Pulsed Doppler Radar, Second Edition
  • Computer programs to generate range-Doppler blind zones and clutter maps

For Course-Related Questions

Please contact the course administrator: Aram Partizian