Phase-space data processing is receiving increased attention because of its potential for furnishing new discriminants relating to classification and identification of targets and other scattering environments. Primary emphasis has been on time-frequency processing because of its impact on transient, especially wideband, short-pulse excitations. Here, we investigate the windowed Fourier transform, the wavelet transform, and model-based superresolution algorithms within the context of a fully quantified and calibrated test problem investigated by us previously: two-dimensional (2-D) short-pulse plane wave scattering by a finite periodic array of perfectly conducting coplanar flat strips. Because the forward problem has been fully calibrated and parametrized, some quantitative measures can be assigned with respect to the tradeoffs of these time-frequency algorithms, yielding tentative performance assessments of the tested processing algorithms. © 1997 IEEE.