Vertical sounding is a widely used technique to obtain ionosphere measurements, such as an estimation of virtual height versus frequency scanning. It is performed by high frequency radar for geophysical applications called "ionospheric sounder” (or "ionosonde”). Radar detection depends mainly on targets characteristics. While several targets behavior and correspondent echo detection algorithms have been studied, a survey to address a suitable algorithm for ionospheric sounder has to be carried out. This paper is focused on automatic echo detection algorithms implemented in particular for an ionospheric sounder, target specific characteristics were studied as well. Adaptive threshold detection algorithms are proposed, compared to the current implemented algorithm, and tested using actual data obtained from the Advanced Ionospheric Sounder (AIS-INGV) at Rome Ionospheric Observatory. Different cases of study have been selected according typical ionospheric and detection conditions
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