Passive Detection of Unintended Radio Emissions

Open Access
Morden, Michael Gawaine
Graduate Program:
Electrical Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
March 26, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Timothy Joseph Kane, Thesis Advisor
  • Julio Urbina, Thesis Advisor
  • IED
  • URE
There are many methods on the market for detection of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED's). This paper discusses one such method that is completely passive. This project was based on a customer request to answer the question: "When presented with a box of unknown electronic contents, can the contents be identified by passively listening to the electromagnetic noise that is radiating from the box?" The system described in this paper is the current solution to the question. It is an ongoing engineering process, and continues to change. The first system was built in a short time frame as a proof of concept. Since then, it has progressed more through building and testing prototypes than computer simulations. A lot of system engineering has gone into combining the power, radios, and antennas into a portable field unit. This has had the added benefit of providing real actionable results which helped shape the current system.