Lic. Alexander BORGHGRAEF

Researcher     +32-2-44-14200     Academic details

Research projects


A consortium lead by LuxSpace (LU) has introduced a proposal "SAT-AIS Phase B1 - E-SAIL" in answer to the ESA call ITT AO/1-6656/10/NL/AD which was accepted in September 2011. OIP Sensor systems (BE) will perform the activities related to the electro-optical (EO) payload as subcontractor of LuxSpace and signed the contract in december 2011. RMA has been asked as a subcontractor by OIP. The topic of the global proposal is a feasibility study of a spaceborne AIS (Automatic Identification System) extended with non-cooperative ship detection capability. The contribution of OIP/RMA is to examine whether an EO imager can be used as a complementary system for non-cooperative vessel detection. RMA will simulate the detection performance of the processing algorithms to be applied on the EO images. The Patrimony of RMA will receive 42000 euro for a contribution of 8 manmonths, which will be performed by Maj v/h Vlw Marijke VANDEWAL and Lt Mathias BECQUAERT.


This project addresses the problem of ship force protection agains asymmetrical threats such as swimmers, drifting mines/IEDs and small craft, this in a port or coastal context. For this it studies the detection of behavioural anomalies in infrared and optical video streams of the ship’s environment.


DMD (Drifting Mines Detection) studies the new mothership/USV minehunting paradigm and its capabilities for detecting drifting mine threats at sea using time-integrated radar and behavioural analysis of infrared video data. RMA contribution is the capture and analysis of radar and video data from the sensor systems of the M-class frigate taking up the role of mothership simulator in this, and also the development and evaluation of drifting mine detection algorithms.


The aim of the FREMM project is to concieve, realise, validate for the PSAD (Performances Senseurs et Aides à la Décision) module, a software that covers the following functionalities. First, the project computation of the effects of the atmospheric and geographical environment on the infrared transmission. Second, the projected computation of the effects of the atmospheric and geogrphical environment on the target and background irradiance. Third, the computation of the output performance (detection, identification) of optronics sensors. Fouth, the computation of images of infrared scenes. The MPIR module is responsible for the synthesis of infrared images of the scene. RMA is reponsible for integrating the OSMOSIS Thermal Model developed at RMA in the MPIR module of the FREMM project. OSMOSIS is an open-source software developed in the context of the MRN 03 study and that compute the thermal model of ships


This project studies the useability of different sensors to detect small objects at the surface of the ocean. Applications are the detection of floating mines and wreck pieces in order to avoid collision, search and rescue of drowning pers. Optical, IR and radar sensors will be considered in order to be able to operate day and night and regardless of the weather conditions.


  1. Alexander Borghgraef, Fabian Lapierre, Olivier Barnich, Marc Vandroogenbroeck, Wilfried Philips, and Marc Acheroy. An Evaluation of Pixel-Based Methods for the Detection of Floating Objects on the Sea Surface. EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing, 2010:11 pages, 2010.
  2. Fabian D. Lapierre, Alexander Borghgraef, and Marijke Vandewal. Statistical Real-time Model for Performance Prediction of Ship Detection from Microsatellite Electro-Optical Imagers. EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing, 2010(Figure 1):1-16, 2010.
  3. Alexander Borghgraef, Fabian Lapierre, Wilfried Philips, and Marc Acheroy. Matched filter based detection of floating mines in IR spacetime. In SPIE Conference on Electro-Optical Remote Sensing, Photonic Technologies, and Applications III,, volume 7482, page 74820U, Berlin, 2009.
  4. A. Borghgraef, F. D. Lapierre, and M. Acheroy. Motion segmentation for tracking small floating targets in IR video. In ITBM&S Workshop Proceedings, Toulouse, France, 2007. Citeseer.
  5. A. Borghgraef and M. Acheroy. Using optical flow for the detection of floating mines in IR image sequences. Proceedings of the SPIE Optics and Photonics in Security and Defence, 6395, September 2006.