This paper presents a new automatic target detection (ATD) algorithm to detect targets such as battle tanks and armored personal carriers in ground-to-ground scenarios. Whereas most ATD algorithms were developed for forward-looking infrared (FLIR) images, we have developed an ATD algorithm for charge-coupled device (CCD) images, which have superior quality to FUR images in daylight. The proposed algorithm uses fast binary template matching with an adaptive binarization, which is robust to various light conditions in CCD images and saves computation time. Experimental results show that the proposed method has good detection performance. (c) 2005 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.