Multichannel synthetic aperture radar (SAR) is a significant breakthrough to the inherent limitation between high-resolution and wide-swath (HRWS) compared with conventional SAR. Moving target indication (MTI) is an important application of spaceborne HRWS SAR systems. In contrast to previous studies of SAR MTI, the HRWS SAR mainly faces the problem of under-sampled data of each channel, causing single-channel imaging and processing to be infeasible. In this study, the estimation of velocity is equivalent to the estimation of the cone angle according to their relationship. The maximum likelihood (ML) based algorithm is proposed to estimate the radial velocity in the existence of Doppler ambiguities. After that, the signal reconstruction and compensation for the phase offset caused by radial velocity are processed for a moving target. Finally, the traditional imaging algorithm is applied to obtain a focused moving target image. Experiments are conducted to evaluate the accuracy and effectiveness of the estimator under different signal-to-noise ratios (SNR). Furthermore, the performance is analyzed with respect to the motion ship that experiences interference due to different distributions of sea clutter. The results verify that the proposed algorithm is accurate and efficient with low computational complexity. This paper aims at providing a solution to the velocity estimation problem in the future HRWS SAR systems with multiple receive channels.
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