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6, JUNE 2000

Noninteger Nyquist Sampling Rates

Brian Hendee Smith

AbstractSpatially variant apodization (SVA) is reformulated domain weightings, SVA can reduce impulse response sidelobe

for use on synthetic aperture radar imagery with an arbitrary level without any mainlobe broadening. SVA has successfully

sampling rate. The algorithm is implemented as a spatially been applied to enhance synthetic aperture radar imagery.

varying three-point finite impulse response filter, and constraints

on the filter parameters are developed from physically motivated The SVA algorithm is efficiently implemented as a three point

concepts. By varying the parameters of the filter, sidelobe energy convolution in the image domain. This implementation requires

is reduced with no effective loss of resolution. The procedure that the data be sampled at an integer multiple of the Nyquist fre-

produces output comparable to that of the integer Nyquist version quency. If incoming data is sampled at a noninteger multiple of

of SVA, and effectively eliminates sidelobe artifacts with no loss of the Nyquist rate, the data must be upsampled to an integer rate, a

mainlobe resolution.

process that increases data storage requirements as well as con-

Index TermsImage enhancement, spectral analysis, synthetic sumes potentially valuable processing time. Furthermore, the in-

aperture radar.

crease in the data size will increase the computational burden of

any postprocessing operations.

I. INTRODUCTION We have developed a form of spatially variant apodization

that can be implemented on arbitrarily oversampled data. This

S YNTHETIC aperture radar imagery is formed from a

dataset with limited frequency domain support. Because

of the linearity of the system, the frequency domain truncation

version provides near complete sidelobe reduction in the im-

pulse response function, and there is no loss of resolution. It

can be used to gain speed realization by avoiding upsampling to

is equivalent to the convolution of the original signal with a

an integer Nyquist rate.

characteristic impulse response function. When no frequency

Another application of the noninteger Nyquist version of SVA

domain weighting is applied, the impulse response can be

is found in development of super resolution algorithms. The

approximated by a sinc function in the image

SVA based super resolution algorithm (Super-SVA [2]) re-

domain. The convolution of the original image with the sinc

quires that SVA be applied to an upsampled version of the orig-

function limits resolution by blurring out any sharp features.

inal image. The amount of upsampling is proportional to the

The sinc function falls off gradually away from the origin, and

desired extrapolation. When the desired extrapolation is nonin-

a bright scatterer can contribute energy to regions of the image

teger, a noninteger Nyquist version of SVA may be required.

some distance away. The dynamic range of radar data is high

This can be a particular problem when Super-SVA is used in

enough that this sidelobe energy may mask or distort the signal

sparse aperture applications [3], where one may not have the

from nearby weaker scatterers. The traditional technique for

luxury of selecting the amount of extrapolation that must be per-

mitigating these sidelobes is to apply a nonuniform frequency

formed on subapertures. With the availability of a noninteger

domain weighting function across the aperture, typically some

Nyquist version of SVA, noninteger extrapolation amounts can

function that falls off at the edges of the aperture such as a

be done more easily using Super-SVA.

Hanning or Taylor weighting. The major drawback of this

method is a systematic loss of resolution; classical sidelobe

II. REVIEW OF SPATIALLY VARIANT APODIZATION

reduction leads to a broadening of the mainlobe of the impulse

response function. SVA is based on the idea of using a spatial location dependent

Spatially variant apodization (SVA) is a nonlinear algorithm aperture function to reduce sidelobe energy without degrading

for reducing impulse response sidelobe levels in band limited resolution. SVA is similar in philosophy to Capons minimum

systems [1]. Like classical methods, SVA relies on a nonuni- variance spectral estimator [4], but SVA is computationally sim-

form frequency domain weighting of the data. In classical tech- plified by restricting the choice of frequencies to the cosine on

niques, the frequency domain weighting function is constant pedestal family of frequency domain weighting functions. The

throughout the entire image. SVA uses an image location de- frequency domain weighting functions are parameterized by

pendent aperture weighting function. Unlike classical frequency (1)

where is a weighting function to be individually chosen at

Manuscript received October 6, 1997; revised September 2, 1999. The as-

sociate editor coordinating the review of this manuscript and approving it for every pixel in the image domain, , and is the frequency. The

publication was Prof. Mita Desai. frequency represents half of the bandwidth, i.e., the region

The author is with the Sensor Development and Applications Group, ERIM of support of the data is . This family of curves

International, Inc., Ann Arbor, MI 48113-4008 USA (e-mail: bhsmith@erim-

int.com). includes uniform ( ), Hanning ( ), and

Publisher Item Identifier S 1057-7149(00)04864-8. Hamming ( ) weighting functions.

10577194/00$10.00 2000 IEEE

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SMITH: GENERALIZATION OF SPATIALLY VARIANT APODIZATION 1089

frequency, the frequency domain weightings in (1) can be effi-

ciently implemented in the image domain through a convolution

with a three point kernel. For Nyquist sampled data, the cosine

on pedestal frequency domain weighting parameterized by

can be expressed in terms of the values of the unweighted image

(2)

where

represents the unweighted image;

represents the cosine on pedestal weighted image;

is an index running over the pixel numbers.

For data sampled at an integer multiple of the Nyquist frequency,

the neighboring pixels, and in equation (2),

can be replaced by the Nyquist neighboring pixels; the pixel Fig. 1. Sidelobe region of unweighted (solid) and cosine on pedestal (dashed)

impulse responses for Nyquist sampled data.

values used in the convolution are located one unit further from

the center pixel for every additional oversampling multiple. This

shifting preserves the image domain representation of the co-

sine-on-pedestal family of aperture weightings.

SVA is a logical extension of multiapodization techniques

where several different frequency domain weightings are ap-

plied to a given set of data. In multiapodization schemes, at any

given pixel, the output is selected by comparing the images pro-

duced from the various aperture weightings. The pixel value of

the final image is set to be the pixel value from the image with

the weighting that has the lowest magnitude at that given point.

SVA multiapodizes over an infinite number of aperture weight-

ings by choosing a value of that minimizes the magnitude of

the output pixel. To regularize the minimization, and to restrict

the data to the class of classical aperture functions, the external

constraint Fig. 2. Impulse response of unweighted (solid) and half frequency cosine

weighted apertures.

(3)

value of with the minimum magnitude subject to the con-

straint in equation (3). A number of variations on the SVA al-

gorithm have been developed. The difference in many of these

variations lies in the way the separate real and imaginary parts

are treated, and the way the process is generalized to two di-

mensions. Two of the simplest algorithms are independent I/Q

(IIQSVA, which apodizes the real and imaginary parts of the

data individually) and joint I/Q (JIQSVA, which minimizes the

complex magnitude). The formalism used below to develop the

noninteger Nyquist version of SVA may be easily applied to al-

most any variant of SVA. For simplicity and space considera-

tions, most of the discussion and examples will concentrate on

the IIQ version of the algorithm. Fig. 3. Worst case impulse response for noninteger Nyquist SVA output.

The impulse response function from SVA consists of a single

sinc mainlobe with no sidelobes. Since SVA is a nonlinear

III. NONINTEGER NYQUIST GENERALIZATION

process, it must be kept in mind that this impulse response is

not a Green function, and the output can not be simply modeled Our discussion of the noninteger Nyquist sampled version of

as a convolution of the input true image with the impulse SVA begins by considering a generalized symmetric

response. However, SVA has been shown to be an efficient finite impulse response filter

spectral estimator, exhibiting a pseudolinearity (linear when

acting on separated impulses) and high resolution capabilities (4)

[5]. SVA has proven to be an efficient means for apodizing

SAR imagery [1] and has been used as the basis of an efficient where and are a set of parameters that describe the filter.

super resolution algorithm [2]. Apodization can be performed in a manner similar to adaptive

Authorized licensed use limited to: INDIAN INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY GUWAHATI. Downloaded on April 17,2010 at 08:17:18 UTC from IEEE Xplore. Restrictions apply.

1090 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON IMAGE PROCESSING, VOL. 9, NO. 6, JUNE 2000

sidelobe reduction (ASR) [6] by choosing spatial location de- unit gainthe family of weightings is restricted to those

pendent values of and that minimize the output, . that pass a dc signal with unit gain at the origin, i.e.,

The problem as it stands is highly degenerate, and additional ;

constraints must be imposed. These additional constraints shall monotonic gainin an attempt to restrict the weightings

be developed from physical considerations below. to classical aperture functions, we shall consider only

The finite impulse response filter in (4) is an image domain apertures with a gain that monotonically decreases as the

implementation of the frequency domain weighting magnitude of the frequency increases.

The first constraint can be imposed by requiring the parameter

(5) to be

quency has support over the region . The

impulse response, in the continuum limit, is given by the ex- The second constraint is more difficult to enforce, but it can

pression be formulated in terms of a set of nonholonomic external con-

straints. For a five point filter, these constraints can be approx-

sinc imated by a restriction to a polyhedral region in the parameter

space. The remainder of this discussion will focus only on the

sinc sinc (6) simpler three-point case. The gain constraint reduces to

where sinc , and is the angular sampling fre-

(9)

quency

where the notation has been replaced with since there is

(7) only one weighting parameter in the case. Since the aper-

ture weighting contains a single inflection point, monotonicity

For general case, we impose two physically motivated con- can be enforced by ensuring positivity at the edge of the aper-

straints: ture, and that the weighting value be greater at the center of the

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SMITH: GENERALIZATION OF SPATIALLY VARIANT APODIZATION 1091

Fig. 5. Noninteger Nyquist SVA applied to image sampled at 1.5 times Nyquist.

aperture than at the edge of the aperture. At the center of the For example, a 1-D IIQ noninteger Nyquist version of SVA is

aperture the weighting is given by accomplished by performing the following operations indepen-

dently on both the real and imaginary parts of the image.

(10)

Calculate for and [the upper limit

while at the edge of aperture weighting is of equation (12)].

If the two values are opposite in sign, the output in

(11) for the channel at pixel is zero.

The monotonicity constraints, when expressed in terms of the Otherwise, the output is the value with the lowest

weightings in equations (10) and (11) require that magnitude.

and . Combining these constraints with the

holonomic constraint in (9), the parameter must lie in the

IV. RESIDUAL SIDELOBES

range

When SVA is formulated on integer Nyquist sampled data

(12) equation (12) constrains the parameter to lie between 0 and

. The sidelobe region of the impulse responses of these ex-

The noninteger Nyquist SVA algorithm can be implemented as treme apertures are plotted in Fig. 1. The important feature to

a three point convolution, in a manner analogous to the Nyquist note is that the sidelobes are beating exactly 180 out of phase

sampled case. Applying a frequency domain weighting subject with each other. Since the two functions always have the oppo-

to the constraint in equation (9) is equivalent to the image do- site sign in the sidelobe region, the SVA impulse response con-

main operation sists only of a sinc pulse mainlobe.

On noninteger Nyquist sampled data, the extreme apertures

(13) will not beat completely out of phase. The worst possible

case can be understood by considering a nearest neighbor

One-dimensional (1-D) and two-dimensional (2-D) SVA al- apodization scheme implemented on twice Nyquist sampled

gorithms can be constructed by using the finite impulse response data (normally, for twice Nyquist sampled data, one would

filter in equation (13) along with the constraints in equation (12). formulate SVA on next-to-nearest neighboring pixels). The

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1092 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON IMAGE PROCESSING, VOL. 9, NO. 6, JUNE 2000

extreme weighting functions in this case consist of the un- integrated sidelobe level is low, and dominant residual sidelobe

weighted aperture, and the pure cosine weighting effects will often be below normal background clutter levels.

The plot in Fig. 3 represents the worst case scenario; for 1.2 or

(14) 1.5 oversampled data, the peaks are noticeably smaller both in

intensity and spatial extent.

Note that the frequency of this cosine is half that used in

the ordinary Nyquist sampled SVA algorithm, and there is no

pedestal offset. The impulse responses for the two extreme V. RESULTS

apertures are plotted in Fig. 2. The sidelobes no longer beat 180 We have tested the noninteger Nyquist SVA algorithm by

out of phase, and there exist regions where the sidelobes from resampling images at various sampling rates from 1.02.0

every possible aperture weighting have the same sign. In these Nyquist. The resampling was done by changing the amount of

regions, SVA will not completely eliminate the sidelobes, and zero pad in the frequency domain. The differences in image

some residual sidelobes will be manifest in the output. Sidelobe quality between the SVA outputs at the 1.0, 1.2, and 1.5

artifacts in the output imagery will come from these residual sampling rates was negligible in the images tested. We present

sidelobes in the impulse response function, as well as any arti- the results from one image in Figs. 46. Fig. 4 is an image of

facts that appear as manifestations of the nonlinear nature of the the University of Michigan Stadium collected and processed

algorithm. using the ERIM Data Collection System. In Fig. 4, the image

The impulse response from the noninteger Nyquist SVA al- is sampled at 1.5 Nyquist, and no frequency domain weighting

gorithm is plotted in Fig. 3. In real SAR data, these peaks will has been applied. Strong sidelobes can be seen ringing from

manifest themselves as low-intensity isolated spots. The total several bright scatterers on and around the stadium.

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SMITH: GENERALIZATION OF SPATIALLY VARIANT APODIZATION 1093

In Fig. 5, the noninteger Nyquist SVA algorithm has been ap- REFERENCES

plied to the same image. The algorithm has been applied individ- [1] H. C. Stankwitz, R. J. Dallaire, and J. R. Fienup, Non-linear apodization

ually to the I and Q channels. For comparison, Fig. 6 shows the for sidelobe control in SAR imagery, IEEE Trans. Aerosp. Electron.

Syst.,, vol. 31, Jan. 1995.

same image sampled at twice Nyquist after SVA has been run. [2] H. C. Stankwitz and M. R. Kosek, Super-resolution for SAR/ISAR RCS

The image quality is comparable, although the residual side- measurement using spatially variant apodization, in Proc. AMTA Symp.,

lobes from the scatterers to the right of the stadium are slightly Williamsburg, VA, Nov. 1995.

larger in the 1.5 Nyquist image. The clutter in the 1.5 has a [3] , Sparse aperture fill for SAR using super-SVA, in Proc. IEEE

Nat. Radar Conf., Ann Arbor, MI, May 1996.

slightly more natural appearance than the 2.0 Nyquist image. [4] J. Capon, High-resolution frequency-wavenumber spectrum analysis,

At the higher sample rate, the speckle patterns are beginning to Proc. IEEE, vol. 57, Aug. 1969.

look more correlated, giving the image a slightly lumpy appear- [5] J. A. C. Lee and D. C. Munson, Jr., Effectiveness of spatially-variant

apodization, in Proc. IEEE Int. Conf. Image Processing, Washington,

ance. DC, Oct. 1995.

[6] S. R. DeGraaf, Sidelobe reduction via adaptive FIR filtering in SAR

imagery, IEEE Trans. Image Processing, vol. 3, May 1994.

VI. CONCLUSIONS

We have developed a version of SVA suitable for use on non-

integer Nyquist sample data. The computational efficiency is

comparable to the integer Nyquist version (although there are Brian Hendee Smith received the Ph.D. degree in

speed and memory improvements that can be made by being theoretical physics from the University of Minnesota,

Minneapolis, in 1994.

able to use a smaller dataset). The image quality is as high as He performed postdoctoral work in the area of

that of SVA, although the impulse response has some low power elementary particle physics at the University of

residual sidelobes. The noninteger Nyquist version of SVA can Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, and the University of

Toronto, Toronto, Ont., Canada. Recent projects have

be applied to application where speed/memory requirements are included development of wideband SAR processing

important, and it can also be used as a component in SVA based algorithms, image enhancement techniques, and

super resolution algorithms. high-performance algorithm implementations.

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