Greg Charvat earned his PhD in Electrical Engineering in 2007, and his dissertation described a low-power radar imaging system (PDF download). Now Dr. Charvat has made his dissertation available for anyone to download.
This system uses the combination of a spatially diverse antenna array, a high sensitivity range-gated frequency-modulated continuous wave (FMCW) radar system, and an airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imaging algorithm to produce near real-time high resolution imagery of what is behind a dielectric wall. This system is capable of detecting and providing accurate imagery of target scenes made up of objects as small as 6 inch tall metallic rods and cylinders behind a 4 inch thick dielectric slab. A study is conducted of through-dielectric slab imaging by the development of a 2D model of a dielectric slab and cylinder. The SAR imaging algorithm is developed and tested on this model for a variety of simulated imaging scenarios and the results are then used to develop an unusually high sensitivity range-gated FMCW radar architecture.