Master Thesis: Modelling and characterization of signal travel times within a ground penetrating radar monitoring system for an in situ calibration
Forschungszentrum Jülich

Master Thesis: Modelling and characterization of signal travel times within a ground penetrating radar monitoring system for an in situ calibration

  • PhD / Postdoc / Thesis (From 25 to 36 months)
  • Jülich (Germany)
  • Published on August 31 2021
Master Thesis: Modelling and characterization of signal travel times within a ground penetrating radar monitoring system for an in situ calibration

Combine your scientific interest and technical skills in the field of electrical engineering to create new knowledge for the socially and scientifically relevant areas of information, energy and bioeconomy. We offer you all of this at the Central Institute of Engineering, Electronics and Analytics - Electronic Systems (ZEA-2) with modelling, designing and developing the most innovative system solutions for science and society.

Project Description & broader Background:
Against the backdrop of global challenges such as climate change and the growing world population, Forschungszentrum Jülich is conducting research with a view to optimizing agricultural yields, improving soil and water protection, and minimizing the impact on the climate. This requires a detailed understanding of the flow and transport processes in soils and the dynamic development of root growth.

For these studies, soil water content is an important parameter that can be determined by imaging dielectric permittivity measurements using a ground penetrating radar measurement system. In order to be able to measure very fast processes, ZEA-2 together with IBG-3 has been developing a ground penetrating radar monitoring system with many stationary antennas for several years, which allows the fast acquisition of high-resolution three-dimensional tomographies of undisturbed soil columns.

For permittivity measurement, the propagation times of electromagnetic waves between transmitting and receiving antennas are determined and corrected with respect to parasitic signal propagation times caused by signal transmission in the measurement system. For this purpose, new calibration methods are developed, since, due to the complexity of the planned monitoring system, the commonly used calibration methods cannot be applied. An essential factor in the new calibration method is the precise characterization of the diverse signal propagation times in the measurement system.

Within the scope of this work, a system component consisting of transmission lines, multiplexer, directional coupler, amplifiers and antennas shall be modeled. The model shall take into account the signal crosstalk between transmit and receive paths, since this coupling is an important element for an in-situ calibration approach of the system. In addition, the temperature dependence of signal propagation times within the individual components shall be investigated. Finally, the simulations will be verified with laboratory measurements. Thus, this work provides an essential contribution for a successful calibration of the ground penetrating radar system, which is indispensable for the final data evaluation.

Your Task:

  • Construction of a simulation model for the analysis of signal reflections and signal crosstalk in ADS
  • Measurement of temperature-induced changes in signal propagation times within the analog circuitry
  • Comparison of simulation results and measurements
  • Implementation of signal processing algorithms for the separation of coupled and reflected signals
  • Optional: Characterization of signal crosstalk between adjacent antennas (e.g. EMPro modeling, measurement).
Your Profile:

  • Study of Electrical Engineering, Physics or similar
  • Programming skills in MATLAB, Python or similar
  • Knowledge in simulation of analog circuits is an advantage
  • Interest in geophysical and communication engineering issues
  • Independent and analytical way of working
Our Offer:

  • Versatile, highly motivated working group of international character within one of the largest research centers in Europe
  • Excellent scientific and technical infrastructure
  • Possibility to work in home office
  • Intensive supervision of the work in conjunction with remuneration
  • Opportunity to actively shape the agricultural science of the future
Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH aims to employ more women in this area and therefore particularly welcomes applications from women.

We also welcome applications from disabled persons.

Did we raise your attention and you got curious?
We are looking forward for your application.
For further information please contact:

Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Central Institute of Engineering, Electronics and Analytics
ZEA-2 - Electronic Systems
Britta Hallmann
52425 Jülich

E-Mail: [email protected]