Hi, I'm Professor Garmin. I am with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering here at Miami University. And today I'm going to talk about the exciting field of radar. We're going to talk about the radars past, present, and the future. And I'm going to start with carrots. Got a whole bunch of them here. Now this is a bit of an unusual choice, but we will provide an explanation for it. Now I'm sure at least some of you have heard that carrots are great for eyesight that they can improve one's vision, make it perhaps even so good that one could see at night. Well, this is mainly a myth. Now carrots are really good for eye health. However, they will not give you a perfect vision, and they will not make you see at night. Unfortunately, this is a myth. But where did this myth originate? Well, let me take you back in history to Battle of Britain. The year is 1940. And the German planes are coming all the way from Germany to bomb English cities. So the situation is actually quite dire for the British. However, they have a secret weapon. Well, what is it?
Well, the Brits have this new technology called radar, which allows for early detection of the enemy airplanes and interception by the British fighters. Now the Germans did not know about this technology. And the British wants to keep it that way, of course. So they put on this propaganda effort. You can see here is one example. It's a wartime poster that says eat carrots and leafy green or yellow vegetables. It will help you with a night vision. And so the point was that, hey, you know, our fighters are so good, and they shoot down so many German planes because they suddenly started eating a lot more carrots. So what do you have here are two examples of this new British technology. On the left here is what's called the chain home, which is a number of radar towers that were built over the entire island of Britain. And here on the bottom right is the Bristol Beaufighter. An airplane equipped with the airborne radar, which could fly at night, which is when German bombers would like to come and bomb Britain. And because of this radar, being able to detect those airplanes, even at night. And at long distances. There were a lot of shutdowns. Eventually, the Germans dropped their plan to bomb Britain and the Battle of Britain was one in no small measure because of this radar technology. So this was a radar past distant past, I would say, however, not the only interesting moment in history when the radar shine. Well, since we are on the subject of distant history, let's look at what happened before there was radar, how many people try to detect an oncoming aircraft, while they listen for it quite literally. So here on the left, you can see one such mechanism, which is a show in the United States, Aberdeen battle testing grounds during World War One, the officer is trying out these two listening mechanisms that would help with the oncoming aircraft detection. And on the right you see a Dutch soldier roughly the same time period, World War One wearing a portable aircraft detection system. So dark times, those were with the advent of radar detection of aircraft became much much more efficient and easy. However, this was not without certain mysteries itself. Here I'll present to you a Curious Case of Cobra Mist. Even the name sounds cool, right? So Cobra Mist was a radar development that happened at the height of Cold War in the 1970s when the United States Navy, in conjunction with the United Kingdom, decided to build a radar site in the United Kingdom in order to detect possible oncoming Soviet missiles. So the radar system was built here it is shown in this photograph. It included multiple radar towers, and the radio itself was quite massive. So everything was built over a period of a few years. Now it's ready for deployment. People turn it on and would they see Horror, suddenly, it looks like there is a hundreds of missiles that are hitting just their way. So how could this be they turn their radar off, consult with the other sources, nothing of the kind is happening, they turn their radar on. And again, it shows that as if there is a whole bunch of missiles coming to the United Kingdom. So they literally take it apart, component by component. They spend two years trying to identify the culprit, whether it's a faulty mechanism somewhere, a faulty circuit, but eventually, they simply give up. Cobra Mist to this day remains an example of well, when the radar just simply doesn't work. So they shut the site down. The entire development cost about $1 billion in today's money. And well, again, this is just an example when a radar detection went awry.
But fortunately, there are other situations when the radar worked just fine. And well, again, there are some interesting details about this, which we're going to look at next. Here, let me introduce you to a battle of Latakia, which is in Syria, which happened in 1973 during one of the Arab Israeli wars. So this was a sea battle. Definitely not the largest sea battle in the history of humanity. Definitely not the most interesting in most respects. Well, except for one. And yes, it does involve the use of radar, except now we're going to look at it from a slightly different perspective.
Well, first, let me introduce the setup. So five Israeli missile boats set out for the Syrian Navy positions. So you see the amount of force here is quite small. So all of those missile boats were equipped with the anti ship missiles, Golda Gabriel, so far, nothing out of the ordinary. However, a big twist is coming. On the Syrian side, they were using the Soviet made comar class boats comar translates as a mosquito. So it wasn't a big boat, either. But these boats were equipped with the so called sticks, missiles also, so you've made and here's a catch. This missiles had twice the effective range, that of Gabriel missiles that the Israelis had. So what to do. So here, I'll have to explain briefly how anti ship missiles worked back then. So on the right here you have the Soviet ship, launching a missile, but the Soviet ship does not have to see the target in order to hit it with a missile, the way the missiles work is as follows. First, the Soviet ship, or the seer and ship, made in the Soviet Union would launch a missile. And that missile would fly in the general direction of the enemy. But then, as it was approaching the enemy, its radar, which remember is very good at detection of metallic targets, such as airplanes, but also ships, its own radar would activate and send signals were well, everywhere. Okay, so those signals, those radio waves would bounce off of water mainly, but also, big objects, such as ships. And the reflection from ships would be really, really much, much larger than the reflections from the water. So the ship would provide a really good signal traveling back to the missile, and the missiles radar would capture that signal and understand that, yes, the missile was flying in the correct direction. Or if they missile suddenly started losing those strong reflections from enemy ships, it would correct its course towards the largest reflection. So this is how anti ship missiles work back then, pretty much how they work now, and the Israelis then faced this. Well, put it mildly, a minor difficulty. They had to close a gap of about 20 kilometers before they could use their own much shorter range Gabriel missiles, whereas the Syrians would be in a position to start launching those radar equipped missiles. And these rail is already here on the left, by the way, you have a Israeli Captain Michael Barkai, who had a secret weapon in his possession. Let me first provide you a hint as to what that secret weapon did. Okay, so now it kind of looks like Michael Barkai is talking. But this is just a reflection coming from well, somewhere else. And suddenly, there's another reflection coming from somewhere else. And suddenly here is another reflection coming from seemingly the water. But notice that the strength of those reflections is the same as the strength of the reflection of the ship. So what is going on? Exactly? Well see what these rails had was called the ECM system, or electronic countermeasure system, which essentially fold the radar, it intercepted those signals that the missile radar were sending out, and made them look like they were coming from all different kinds of directions, kind of like what happened in the case of Cobra Mist, except that it's unknown to this day, what caused those signals to appear in case of Cobra Mist? Well, in this case, it's clear what caused them to appear it was the ECM system, from the Israeli bolts. So now you have suddenly a whole bunch of reflections all of them pretty strong. And the missile is now kind of will scratching his hat. Well, if it had had, he would scratch it, which direction should I go? Well, long story short, all of the missiles that the Syrians had launched, fell into the sea being fooled by all those multiple reflections generated by the Israeli ECM system. So the Battle of Latakia had since then been known as the first ever battle in which electronic countermeasures were used.
Well, if this was all radar past, where does it the future lies? So we've been talking about military applications a lot. How about some civilian ones? Alright, so let me show you a website of ANSYS, which is a company that makes electromagnetic simulation software, which we use in our classes here at Miami. And in this case, specifically, they're talking about autonomous vehicle radar, improving radar performance with simulation. So you can visit the website on your own and read all about it. But let me just say what they are saying about using radar in automatic systems, radar systems play a central role in safety systems and must be tested with vehicle control systems and algorithms to validate safe operation. In other words, radar is becoming an integral part of a self driving car market as well as in regular automotive applications. So here you have an example of various sensors that are installed or could be installed on a modern car, and one of them is radar. In fact, here they show that you can use a long range radar for adaptive cruise control. And you can use a short or medium range radar for for example, cross traffic alerts and blind spot detection in rear collision warnings. This is not the only applications of radar in this sense. You could also use it for collision avoidance and a number of other things. So you might ask them Well, okay, so what does make a radar so different from for example, a camera if you simply have a camera? Wouldn't that be enough? Well, let me illustrate to you the difference between the two technologies. So here's a picture that I like showing in my classes when I teach radar, and it shows you exact same scene, except captured by two different types of sensors. On the left, you have the scene that is captured by means of a camera. And on the right you have a radar image. And by the way, yes, radar can do not just detection, but also imaging, among other things nowadays, but let's look at the two images and try to compare and contrast them. So what the camera image shows you is well a whole bunch of details right. So you can see a castle you can see some trees you can see the hill covered with the shrubs, you can see a lot and this is what we are used to right so we take a picture with our camera and it shows you all the entire scene. On the Wrights you have a much poorer picture right so this is a made by a radar and you can kind of barely see the castle you can not see any shrubs or trees. However, look here. What it shows you is a small tank, which is basically invisible in the image captured by the camera. So if your goal is to image or focus on metal static objects, radar is actually a superior mechanism in order to achieve this. So this is kind of interesting. And this leads me to discussing one possible implementation of automotive radar, which would be impossible to achieve with a camera.
So what we have here is an image of some box with something inside, we don't know what it is. And it's sitting on a driveway, right? So what about if this box was sitting on a highway, for example, a truck dropped it accidentally, right in front of your car. So you have only a few seconds to decide what to do. If you are, let's say, in the future and driving a self driving car, which will actually is driving itself, right, so the car would need to make that decision what to do. And there could be a couple of decisions that it could make one, it could try to swerve and avoid this new object, or it could try to well run over it. I mean, obviously, both of these two decisions are not that great because of the traffic is, is very busy, swerving might be dangerous and risky. So in some situations, it probably would be better to run over this, even though you would ruin somebody's package here, right? Or the contents of it all, you know, at least you would not cause a, an incident. So what would you did? How would you decide what to do in this case? Or how would the car's algorithm decide what to do? This is an interesting problem that unfortunately, cannot be solved by a camera. So a camera would just simply show you, you know, hey, there is a, you know, a package on the road, that's about it, the camera cannot look inside, but the radar cam, so the radar waves can actually penetrate the cardboard and see what's inside. Quite literally, if it is a metallic object, meaning that the package is quite heavy, and potentially dangerous in terms of a collision with it. Well, the radar would be able to tell you that if on the other hand, there is a wall for example, close in there, the radar would be able to tell you that too. So the car, the self driving car, would then have enough information in order to decide what to do in this scenario. And this would be made possible by the radar, and camera, unfortunately, would not be able to give you enough information to make that kind of a decision. Well, our mini lecture is almost over. We've talked about the radar sensing, past, present and the future. Once again, radar is a great and exciting field. Radar is an all weather day or night type of sensor that can provide some additional information that cameras cannot provide. And to close the lecture on something even more exciting and interesting. Let me show you one example of a radar, which is SB x one it's a naval radar costs about 900 million produces or uses about one megawatt of power. And just the antenna, which is inside this radio over here weighs about 4 million pounds. So what is cool about it, you ask? Alright, so this is information from open sources, in fact, from Wikipedia, and, well, it's kind of self explanatory. This radar is able to track an object, the size of a baseball over in San Francisco in California, while being itself located at Chesapeake Bay in Virginia, approximately almost 3000 miles away. So this is just one of the examples of cool radars. There are a lot more out there. And that's what we teach in our classes and that's what we discuss in our labs and in our seminars. Hope that was enough to pique your interest in this wonderful field. If you have any questions at all, don't hesitate to contact us at Miami University.