Chapter 8

Radar Wave Propagation

8.1. The Earth’s Impact on the Radar Equation

So far in this book, all analysis presented implicitly assumed that the radar electromagnetic waves travel as if they were in free space. Simply put, all analysis presented did not account for the effects of the earth’s atmosphere nor the effects of the earth’s surface. Despite the fact that “free space analysis” may be adequate to provide a general understanding of radar systems, it is only an approximation. In order to accurately predict radar performance, one must modify free space analysis to include the effects of the earth and its atmosphere. These modifications should account for ground reflections from the surface of the earth, diffraction of electromagnetic ...

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