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17 May 2006 New Mexico Tech landmine, UXO, IED detection sensor test facility: measurements in real field soils
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Modeling studies and experimental work have demonstrated that the dynamic behavior of soil physical properties has a significant effect on most sensors for the detection of buried land mines. An outdoor test site has been constructed allowing full control over soil water content and continuous monitoring of important soil properties and environmental conditions. Time domain reflectometry sensors and thermistors measure soil water1 content and temperature, respectively, at different depths above and below the land mines as well as in homogeneous soil away from the land mines. During the two-year operation of the test-site, the soils have evolved to reflect real field soil conditions. This paper compares visual observations as well as ground-penetrating radar and thermal infrared measurements at this site taken immediately after construction in early 2004 with measurements from early 2006. The visual observations reveal that the 2006 soil surfaces exhibit a much higher spatial variability due to the development of mini-reliefs, "loose" and "connected" soil crusts, cracks in clay soils, and vegetation. Evidence is presented that the increased variability of soil surface characteristics leads to a higher natural spatial variability of soil surface temperatures and, thus, to a lower probability to detect landmines using thermal imagery. No evidence was found that the soil surface changes affect the GPR signatures of landmines under the soil conditions encountered in this study. The New Mexico Tech outdoor Landmine Detection Sensor Test Facility is easily accessible and anyone interested is welcome to use it for sensor testing.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Jan M. H. Hendrickx, Nicole Alkov, Sung-ho Hong, Remke L. Van Dam, Jan Kleissl, Heather Shannon, John Meason, Brian Borchers, and Russell S. Harmon "New Mexico Tech landmine, UXO, IED detection sensor test facility: measurements in real field soils", Proc. SPIE 6217, Detection and Remediation Technologies for Mines and Minelike Targets XI, 62170V (17 May 2006);

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