Application of linear and nonlinear PCA to SAR ATR

Amit Kumar Mishra, Tshiamo Motaung

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Proceeding (Non-Journal item)


This paper explores the use of Principal Component Analysis (PCA) techniques for the development of classification systems for Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Images. The concept of Principal Component Analysis is centered on feature extraction and dimensionality reduction. Through the exploitation of spatial differences and variances between data points of a specific data domain, application of PCA techniques allows the reduction of datasets to representations consisting of principal components only. The effect hence forth being the reduction of dataset sizes, which translates to a reduction in processing time on these datasets, for almost any application the mathematical technique is applied to. Open literature provides examples of software computation domains to which PCA has been applied, examples being face recognition and geo-environmental forecasting applications. Both linear and nonlinear PCA forms are covered in this paper. Application of linear PCA to SAR based automatic target recognition has been covered extensively in open literature. This investigation therefore aims to improve on the performance achieved by linear PCA application, using non linear PCA. Three systems were developed for the purpose of the investigation, which were a linear PCA system, a nonlinear PCA system using a polynomial kernel, and a nonlinear PCA system using a Gaussian kernel. The systems were tested for how well they responded to a reduction in training dataset, as this is a real-world problem experienced in ATR systems. The performance of the systems in terms of their running times were also evaluated. As anticipated, the nonlinear PCA approach outperformed the linear PCA approach, and the performance of the polynomial kernel PCA system was observed to be the best of all the three systems.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 25th International Conference Radioelektronika, RADIOELEKTRONIKA 2015
PublisherIEEE Press
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4799-8119-9
ISBN (Print)978-1-4799-8117-5
Publication statusPublished - 21 Apr 2015
Externally publishedYes
Event25th International Conference Radioelektronika, RADIOELEKTRONIKA 2015 - Pardubice, Czech Republic
Duration: 21 Apr 201522 Apr 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of 25th International Conference Radioelektronika, RADIOELEKTRONIKA 2015


Conference25th International Conference Radioelektronika, RADIOELEKTRONIKA 2015
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
Period21 Apr 201522 Apr 2015


  • ATR
  • nonlinear PCA
  • PCA


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