Recent Changes to the IEEE std 1502 Recommended Practice for Radar Cross-Section Test Procedures

Authors: Eric Mokole, L. J. Foged, Vince Rodriguez, Jeff Fordham, Vikass Monebhurrun
Publication: AMTA 2019
Copyright Owner: NSI-MI Technologies

Radar scattering is typically represented as the RCS of the test object. The term RCS evolved from the basic metric for radar scattering: the ratio of the power scattered from an object in units of power per solid angle (steradians) normalized to the plane-wave illumination in units of power per unit area. The RCS is thus given in units of area (or effective cross-sectional area of the target, hence the name). Note that the RCS of the test object is a property of the test object alone; it is neither a function of the radar system nor the distance between the radar and the test object, if the object is in the far field. Because the RCS of a target can have large amplitude variation in frequency and angle, it is expressed in units of decibels with respect to a square meter and is abbreviated as dBsm (sometimes DBSM or dBm2). In terms of this definition, the RCS of a radar target is a scalar ratio of powers. If the effects of polarization and phase are included, the scattering can be expressed as a complex polarimetric scattering (CPS) matrix. The measurement of the RCS of a test object requires the test object to be illuminated by an electromagnetic plane wave and the resultant scattered signal to be observed in the far field. After calibration, this process yields the RCS of the test object in units of area, or the full scattering matrix as a set of complex scattering coefficients.

This paper describes the planned upgrades to the old IEEE Std 1502™-2007 IEEE Recommended Practice for Radar Cross- Section Test Procedures [1]. The new standard will reflect the recent improvements in numerical tools, measurement technology and uncertainty estimates in the past decade.

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