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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 613692, 12 pages
Research Article

A Novel Virtual Time Reversal Method for Passive Direction of Arrival Estimation

Department of Information and Communication Engineering, Harbin Engineering University, Harbin 150001, China

Received 1 December 2014; Accepted 5 February 2015

Academic Editor: Roman Lewandowski

Copyright © 2015 Yongqing Fu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The paper presents a new method to estimate the two-dimensional (2D) direction of arrival (DOA) (the azimuth angle and the elevation angle) of electromagnetic signal emitted from a single communication station. This method is passive and accurate in the case of low signal-noise ratio (SNR) based on the virtual time reversal (VTR) theory. In order to illustrate its principle, the theoretical formulas of VTR direction finding with uniform circular array (UCA) are derived firstly. Based on these formulas, the implementation scheme for estimating azimuth angle and elevation angle passively is then provided. In the derivation, the strict mathematical proof for compressing planar search area to a curve line is proposed, reducing the complexity of VTR algorithm greatly. Finally, the simulation experiments are performed to validate the performance of VTR algorithm. The results show that the VTR method is effective and it delivers accurate DOA estimation in the case of low SNR.