ARLINGTON - Qilian
Liang, a UT Arlington professor of electrical engineering, has won two Department
of Defense grants totaling $585,987 to develop a radar sensor network that will
help soldiers detect potential threats obscured by walls or foliage.
technology doesn’t link radar sensors in a network or allow for shared
information in real time. Liang’s radar sensor network will be capable of providing
military troops a web of information about large swaths of land, such as urban
areas or a shoreline environment. The system, for example, will be able to provide
soldiers information about an entire building rather than a smaller area within
lines of sight.
an urban setting, man-made structures or foliage favor hidden threats because
the soldier has a limited sensing capability,” Liang said. “We want to help
those soldiers identify what it is they’re seeing through the network in the
field. It’s very important they know who and where the threats are.”
Jonathan Bredow, chair of the UT Department of Electrical
Engineering, said Qilian's funding and publication records demonstrate that he
is one of the top international researchers in the emerging area of radar
sensor networks and applications.
“His breakthrough work will enable totally new ways of assessing
and responding to security threats in complex environments, which are often of
high impact and the most vulnerable,” Bredow said. “This will be a major boost
to UT Arlington’s top-tier research mission.”
first grant is funded through the Defense University Research Instrumentation
Program. It is the result of a merit competition conducted by the Army Research
Office, Office of Naval Research and Air Force Office of Scientific Research.
According to a defense department news release, more than 800 proposals were
submitted, and 165 were funded. The second grant is funded through the Office
of Naval Research.
said the radar sensor network his team is developing has the potential for more
efficient sensing and data storage, too.
want to be judicious in the amount of information we provide soldiers,” Liang
said. “We want to give them the very best information so our system will refine
the data amount they receive in the field.”
ability to screen data is based on a new technology called compressive sensing,
which can remove the data redundancy and extract the most important
outcome of this project will enhance naval and Marine Corps soldiers’
capabilities in detecting where threats lie in an urban setting,” Liang said.
The sensor network
research could be adapted for domestic use as well, Liang said. He envisions
the system being used in airports or at large-scale public events, such as the
Super Bowl, as a scanning device that could identify potential threats or find concealed
In 2003, Liang received
the prestigious Young Investigator Award from the Office of Naval Research, one
26 researchers honored from 220 candidates. Since then, Liang has been awarded
five major research grants from the Office of Naval Research totaling almost
Liang’s work is among
the innovation under way at The University of Texas at Arlington, a
comprehensive research institution of 33,800 students in the heart of North
Texas. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more.
The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.