Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Operational Sciences

First Advisor

Kenneth W. Bauer, Jr. PhD


This research extends the field of hyperspectral target detection by developing autonomous anomaly detection and signature matching methodologies that reduce false alarms relative to existing benchmark detectors, and are practical for use in an operational environment. The proposed anomaly detection methodology adapts multivariate outlier detection algorithms for use with hyperspectral datasets containing tens of thousands of non-homogeneous, high-dimensional spectral signatures. In so doing, the limitations of existing, non-robust, anomaly detectors are identified, an autonomous clustering methodology is developed to divide an image into homogeneous background materials, and competing multivariate outlier detection methods are evaluated for their ability to uncover hyperspectral anomalies. To arrive at a final detection algorithm, robust parameter design methods are employed to determine parameter settings that achieve good detection performance over a range of hyperspectral images and targets, thereby removing the burden of these decisions from the user. The final anomaly detection algorithm is tested against existing local and global anomaly detectors, and is shown to achieve superior detection accuracy when applied to a diverse set of hyperspectral images. The proposed signature matching methodology employs image-based atmospheric correction techniques in an automated process to transform a target reflectance signature library into a set of image signatures. This set of signatures is combined with an existing linear filter to form a target detector that is shown to perform as well or better relative to detectors that rely on complicated, information-intensive, atmospheric correction schemes. The performance of the proposed methodology is assessed using a range of target materials in both woodland and desert hyperspectral scenes.

AFIT Designator