Image Segmentation for Radar Signal Deinterleaving using Deep Learning

Nuhoglu M. A., Alp Y. K., Ulusoy M. E. C., Çırpan H. A.

IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/taes.2022.3188225
  • Journal Name: IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Aerospace Database, Applied Science & Technology Source, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, Communication Abstracts, Compendex, Computer & Applied Sciences, INSPEC, Metadex, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Keywords: Deep learning, deep learning, deinterleaving, electronic warfare, Image segmentation, Neural networks, pri transform, radar, Radar, Radar imaging, Radar measurements, segmentation, Transforms, U-Net
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


IEEEPassive systems, such as Electronic Intelligence (ELINT) and Electronic Support Measures (ESM) systems, aim to extract necessary information from the received radar signals for situational awareness. To achieve that, the system must first deinterleave the radar signals simultaneously coming from different emitters so that the pulse repetition interval (PRI) patterns will be revealed for further analysis and identification purposes. PRI transform is a well-known deinterleaving method that utilizes the complex autocorrelation function. There are two main versions of the method. The initial version detects only constant PRI schemes, while the second modified version is capable of detecting varying PRI schemes as well. Miss detection of varying PRI patterns is the drawback for the first version, while producing harmonics especially at high PRI levels is the disadvantage of the second one. To alleviate these problems, we propose an image segmentation method based on deep learning. The developed preprocessing step uses both versions of the PRI transform outputs to generate 2D time-PRI images of the collected radar emissions so that constant and varying PRI patterns are revealed. The images are concatenated and fed to the proposed network, which uses a practicable U-Net structure. The output of the network directly estimates the PRI levels of the existing radars and the time duration of the transmission jointly. In addition to qualitative and quantitative experiments on synthetic datasets, qualitative experiments are conducted on real measurements, in which we demonstrate that the proposed method effectively utilizes PRI transform in the preprocessing step and outperforms both versions of the PRI transform in terms of accuracy, Jaccard index, structural similarity and PRI estimation error metrics.