Article | August 21, 2013

Smart Microwave Sensors For Critical Site Protection

Miniaturized, high-performance smart radar sensors with multiple features and operating mode capabilities can easily and effectively protect large open sites by detecting and tracking moving or stationary targets over a 360° azimuth.

By Simone Ledda, University of Florence Antenna and Microwaves Laboratory

Sensitive and protected area such as oil fields, power plants, airports, borders, ports, embassies, military and government sites, correctional facilities, industrial and commercial installations, and VIP residences are critical sites that necessitate very efficient protection against criminal or terroristic attacks.

The classic protection systems commonly used for infrastructure protection, such as barbed wire fences and perimeter security sensors with a low level of smartness and flexibility, are often highly obtrusive and not definitively unassailable. A clever solution to many of the drawbacks associated with security devices currently on the market, most of which are based on cameras, could consist of a wireless sensor network (WSN) of smart radar sensors (SRS) with a high level of reconfigurability and robustness to physical and cyber-attacks.

Innovative technologies are moving toward highly miniaturized and integrated radar sensors suitable to be easily embedded or concealed in the site protection infrastructure.
SRS networks are capable of detecting multiple intruder simultaneously and allow fully radar detection capability in all light and weather conditions along with continuous tracking of each detected target. Furthermore, the classification of the target and then of the intruder (armed or disarmed) will be facilitated using polarization agility and artificial neural network methods.