Abstract

This paper investigates the ability to improve Space Domain Awareness (SDA) by increasing the number of detectable Resident Space Objects (RSOs) from space surveillance sensors. With matched filter based techniques, the expected impulse response, or Point Spread Function (PSF), is compared against the received data. In the situation where the images are spatially undersampled, the modeled PSF may not match the received data if the RSO does not fall in the center of the pixel. This aliasing can be accounted for with a Multiple Hypothesis Test (MHT). Previously, proposed MHTs have implemented a test with an equal a priori prior probability assumption. This paper investigates using an unequal a priori probability MHT. To determine accurate a priori probabilities, three metrics are computed; they are correlation, physical distance, and empirical. Using the calculated a priori probabilities, a new algorithm is developed, and images from the Space Surveillance Telescope (SST) are analyzed. The number of detected objects by both an equal and unequal prior probabilities are compared while keeping the false alarm rate constant. Any additional number of detected objects will help improve SDA capabilities.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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