Technical co-sponsor

Financial supporter

Alfonso Farina

Biograph: Alfonso Farina, LFIEEE, FIET, FREng, Fellow of EURASIP, received the degree in Electronic Engineering from the University of Rome (IT) in 1973. In 1974, he joined Selenia, then Selex ES, where he became Director of the Analysis of Integrated Systems Unit and subsequently Director of Engineering of the Large Business Systems Division. In 2012, he was Senior VP and Chief Technology Officer of the company, reporting directly to the President. From 2013 to 2014, he was senior advisor to the CTO. He retired in October 2014. From 1979 to 1985, he was also professor of “Radar Techniques” at the University of Naples (IT). He is the author of more than 700 peer-reviewed technical publications and of books and monographs (published worldwide), some of them also translated in to Russian and Chinese. Some of the most significant awards he’s received include: (2004) Leader of the team that won the First Prize of the first edition of the Finmeccanica Award for Innovation Technology, out of more than 330 submitted projects by the Companies of Finmeccanica Group; (2005) International Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, U.K., and the fellowship was presented to him by HRH Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh; (2010) IEEE Dennis J. Picard Medal for Radar Technologies and Applications for “Continuous, Innovative, Theoretical, and Practical Contributions to Radar Systems and Adaptive Signal Processing Techniques”; (2012) Oscar Masi award for the AULOS® “green” radar by the Italian Industrial Research Association (AIRI); (2014) IET Achievement Medal for “Outstanding contributions to radar system design, signal, data and image processing, and data fusion”. He is a Visiting Professor at University College London (UCL), Dept. Electronic and Electrical Engineering, CTIF (Center for TeleInFrastructures) Industry Advisory Chair, and a Distinguished Lecturer (DL) of IEEE AESS. 

(2017) IEEE SPS Industrial Leader Award for contributions to radar array processing and industrial leadership. 

(2017) Chair of Italy Section Chapter, AES10.

(2018) The IEEE Signal Processing Society announced the 2018 Class of Distinguished Industry Lecturers for the term of 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2019.

Main received best paper awards: B. Carlton of IEEE – Trans. on AES (2001, 2003, and 2013), IET – Proc. on Radar Sonar and Nav. (2009-2010) and Int. Conf. on Fusion (2004, 2009). 

He is consultant to Leonardo S.p.A. “Land & Naval Defence Electronics Division”, Rome (I).

Title:Cognition and Radar Technologya

Abstract: The main starting point and the general question behind my presentation are the following: the design of a communicate system can take into account the optimal transfer of intelligence? Can radar technology become able to capture brain behavior and benefit of cognition? Do exist relationships between the Information Theory and the Natural Intelligence? How is it possible to move toward the Theory of Intelligence?

To these questions and much other, interest readers can find some even partial answers in the recently published book "The Impact of Cognition on Radar Technology", that I co-authored with Antonio De Maio and Simon Haykin [1].

In my presentation I will go through some topics discussed in the book, where the history of radar is presented, from the origins up to the modern era, where the new radars "think", "decide" and "reason" as living beings.

A review of modern operational requirements and the enabling key technologies to respectively motivate and support the implementation of the cognitive radar is provided with the goal to recommend the Cognitive Radar as a key technology, that opens the way to get Intelligence from the sensed data, to convince engineers from the industry, who need to ascertain whether a new technology is valuable from an operational point of view.  Moreover today's phased-array radars are analyzed by showing that they are already in some manner cognitive. 

Cognitive Radar concept is explored explaining the inspiring principles and illustrating the basic system architecture, also in comparison with a classic adaptive radar. Some distinctive features will be highlighted, such as Adaptivity, Mindful, Contextual and Intelligent. 

The cognitive design of radar waveforms in a spectrally crowded environment where some frequency bands are shared among the radar and other telecommunication systems will be presented, by explaining how cognition provided by a REM (Radio Environmental Map) is used as the key to an intelligent and dynamic spectrum allocation.  Either global or local spectral compatibility requirements will be considered at the design stage. Polynomial computational complexity solution procedures developed to synthesize optimized radar waveforms will be discussed and the performance of the synthesized signals analyzed. 

As regard the Transmitter-Receiver Pair, cognition about the surrounding environment is exploited to adapt the system to the interfering environment. Precisely, the robust joint optimization of the transmit signal and receive filter bank in the presence of signal-dependent interference will be considered. The effectiveness of the cognitive architecture will be investigated when the target Doppler frequency is a-priori unknown. In fact, while a rough Doppler knowledge is very reasonable during the detection confirmation or for an already tracked target, it is usually not available during the standard search radar operations and suitable cognitive algorithms are required. Alternating optimization procedure over the transmit signal and the receive filter bank will be presented and several numerical examples provided to assess the effectiveness of the considered method in diverse challenging scenarios.  

Radar Target Tracking will be presented when a tracker exploiting cognition at multiple levels is designed. Specifically, environmental maps and characteristics of the targets, available in the dynamic database possibly learned from the feedback channel, are used to gain improved tracking performance in a multiple targets scenario. In fact, unlike the conventional tracking radar (which is very sensitive to false alarms and/or missed detections), the main advantage of the cognitive paradigm is the significant reduction in the number of false alarms, missed detections, false tracks and improved true target track life.  In addition, it will be shown how the choice of the most suitable waveform will further optimize the target tracking process.  The proposed algorithm is based on the use of feedback information from the receiver and exploits a standard  Kalman filter. The performance of the proposed strategy will be highlighted. Moreover, the definition of Anticipative Target Tracking will be given, by illustrating some case studies to increase the confidence of the Reader with this technology and with related algorithms. Anticipative Target Tracking encompasses a number of operational cases and relates to the possibility to exploit some a-priori information to help the task of prediction. A-priori information (like maps, roads, gallery terrain orography, multipath exploitation to mitigate blind conditions for instance in urban tracking, etc.) are very helpful in assisting the target tracking and predicting ahead in time the target trajectory. This is a form of cognitive tracking also referred to as Knowledge Based Tracker (KBT), synonymous with Proactive Tracking (PT) and analyzed with respect to the classical Reactive Tracking (RT).  

An Overview on the Exploitation of Cognition in MIMO Radar, Electronic Warfare, and Synthetic Aperture Radar will be given, together with the presentation of some miscellanea application domains which could significantly benefit by the use of cognition. An attempt to shed some light on the path to follow from Information to Intelligence theory will be sketched, by taking into account that “Intelligence" has been mentioned as a capability of Cognitive Radar (CR), but a definition and a theory are not yet available today.  Furthermore, some particular and innovative topics, ranging from Cyber Security to the powerfulness of networks, inspired by brain connectivity and social behavior, will be discussed. 

Several open issues will be considered.


Important dates

Registration open date:
1 July 2018
Early registration deadline:
31 July 2018
Author registration dealine:
31 August 2018
Camera-ready Paper Submission:
30 June 2018
Extend to 10 July 2018

Remaining days till

IET Radar 2018


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