Probability Hypothesis Densities for Multitarget, Multisensor Tracking with Application to Passive Radar

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Tobias, Martin
Lanterman, Aaron D.
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The probability hypothesis density (PHD), popularized by Ronald Mahler, presents a novel and theoretically-rigorous approach to multitarget, multisensor tracking. Based on random set theory, the PHD is the first moment of a point process of a random track set, and it can be propagated by Bayesian prediction and observation equations to form a multitarget, multisensor tracking filter. The advantage of the PHD filter lies in its ability to estimate automatically the expected number of targets present, to fuse easily different kinds of data observations, and to locate targets without performing any explicit report-to-track association. We apply a particle-filter implementation of the PHD filter to realistic multitarget, multisensor tracking using passive coherent location (PCL) systems that exploit illuminators of opportunity such as FM radio stations. The objective of this dissertation is to enhance the usefulness of the PHD particle filter for multitarget, multisensor tracking, in general, and within the context of PCL, in particular. This involves a number of thrusts, including: 1) devising intelligent proposal densities for particle placement, 2) devising a peak-extraction algorithm for extracting information from the PHD, 3) incorporating realistic probabilities of detection and signal-to-noise ratios (including multipath effects) to model realistic PCL scenarios, 4) using range, Doppler, and direction of arrival (DOA) observations to test the target detection and data fusion capabilities of the PHD filter, and 5) clarifying the concepts behind FISST and the PHD to make them more accessible to the practicing engineer. A goal of this dissertation is to serve as a tutorial for anyone interested in becoming familiar with the probability hypothesis density and associated PHD particle filter. It is hoped that, after reading this thesis, the reader will have gained a clearer understanding of the PHD and the functionality and effectiveness of the PHD particle filter.
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