Sensors and Signals (MECH5720)


Syllabus Summary: This course starts by providing a background to the signals and transforms required to understand modern sensors. It goes on to provide an overview of the workings of typical active sensors (Radar, Lidar and Sonar). It provides insight into basic sensing methods as well as aspects of interfacing and signal processing. It includes both background material and a number of case studies. The course covers the following topics: a) SIGNALS: Convolution, The Fourier Transform, Modulation (FM, AM, FSK, PSK etc), Frequency shifting (mixing) b) PASSIVE SENSORS: Infrared Radiometers, Imaging Infrared, Passive Microwave Imaging, Visible Imaging & Image Intensifiers c) ACTIVE SENSORS THE BASICS: Operational Principles, Time of flight (TOF) Measurement & Imaging of Radar, Lidar and Sonar, Radio Tags and Transponders, Range Tacking, Doppler Measurement, Phase Measurement d) SENSORS AND THE ENVIRONMENT: Atmospheric Effects, Target Characteristics, Clutter Characteristics, Multipath e) ACTIVE SENSORS: ADVANCED TECHNIQUES: Probability of Detection, Angle Measurement and Tracking, Combined Range/Doppler and Angle Tracking, Frequency Modulation and the Fast Fourier Transform, High Range Resolution, Wide Aperture Methods, Synthetic Aperture Methods (SAR) Objectives: The course aims to provide students with a good practical knowledge of a broad range of sensor technologies, operational principles and relevant signal processing techniques. Expected Outcomes: A good understanding of active sensors, their outputs and applicable signal processing techniques. An appreciation of the basic sensors that are available to engineers and when they should be used.

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3 hours of lectures and 2 hours of tutorials per week


Through semester assessment (70%), Final Exam (30%)

Faculty/department permission required?


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Prerequisites and assumed knowledge

Prerequisite: Assumed knowledge: Strong MATLAB skills

Prerequisite: Assumed knowledge: Strong MATLAB skills



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