Bodkin Design gets SBIR to develop switchable polarimetric camera for unmanned aircraft systems

USAF_UAV
The U.S. Air Force's MQ-1 Predator. Bodkin Design & Engineering has an SBIR to develop a switchable polarizing camera element for use in UAVs. (Photo courtesy of United States Air Force)

 

Newton, MA--Bodkin Design & Engineering, LLC (BD&E) was awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research program (SBIR) contract by the U.S. Air Force to develop a switchable polarizing camera element for aerial surveillance from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). When retrofitted to an IR camera, the device can switch from high-resolution IR imaging mode to a polarimetric IR imaging mode.

Polarimetric imaging can improve the detection of targets under tree canopies, in camouflage, and in cluttered environments, separating man-made objects such as vehicles and buildings from clutter in a reconnaissance scene. Flat surfaces on these objects partially polarize both reflected light and thermally emitted radiation.

Current polarimetric imaging technology uses either multiple cameras with multiple filters or a single camera with time multiplexing. Multiple cameras and filters yield high-resolution polarimetric images of the scene, but lead to large and expensive systems. Time multiplexing produces high-resolution imagery but at a slower data rate and can suffer from temporal artifacts.

BD&E is designing an instrument that will map polarimetric information simultaneously onto a single focal plane, with the focal plane divided into sections for each type of information; this eliminates temporal artifacts and makes a more rugged imager, says BD&E. The design has no moving parts, is compact and adaptable to existing camera systems, and can rapidly switch between polarimetric and high-resolution imagery.

BD&E has contracts with the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy, and Missile Defense Agency for several optical-engineering projects.



Most Popular Articles

50 YEARS OF GAS LASERS


Durable survivors evolve new forms

Webcasts

Laser Measurements Critical to Successful Additive Manufacturing Processes

Maximizing the stability of the variables going into any manufacturing process is what ensures ts consistency and high quality. Specifically, when a laser is...

Ray Optics Simulations with COMSOL Multiphysics

The Ray Optics Module can be used to simulate electromagnetic wave propagation when the wavelength is much smaller than the smallest geometric entity in the ...

Multichannel Spectroscopy: Technology and Applications

This webcast, sponsored by Hamamatsu, highlights some of the photonic technology used in spectroscopy, and the resulting applications.

Handheld Spectrometers

Spectroscopy is a powerful and versatile tool that traditionally often required a large and bulky instrument. The combination of compact optics and modern pa...

Fracking, climate change, and lasers:  new tools to reduce fugitive methane emissions

This webcast, sponsored by Hamamatsu Corporation, covers recent developments and field deployments of compact quantum-cascade-laser (QCL)-based methane senso...

Opportunities in the Mid-IR

The technology for exploiting the mid-IR is developing rapidly:  it includes quantum-cascade lasers and other sources, spectroscopic instruments of many...
White Papers

All About Aspheric Lenses

The most notable benefit of aspheric lenses is their ability to correct for spherical aberration....

Wavelength stabilized multi-kW diode laser systems

Wavelength stabilization of high-power diode laser systems is an important means to increase the ...

Narrow-line fiber-coupled modules for DPAL pumping

A new series of fiber coupled diode laser modules optimized for DPAL pumping is presented, featur...
Technical Digests

FREEFORM OPTICS: Top-notch capabilities lead to expanded possibilities

The use of free-form aspherical surfaces in an optical system can give it abilities impossible to...

RAMAN SPECTROSCOPY: The technical advances just keep coming

In Raman spectroscopy, light from a laser interacts with a test sample, undergoing a wavelength s...

ADHESIVES, SEALANTS, AND COATINGS: Solutions for optical technologies

A vast array of optical systems of various types and degrees of complexity require the use of adh...

Click here to have your products listed in the Laser Focus World Buyers Guide.

PRESS RELEASES

AFL Secures Patent for OTDR Technology

10/03/2013 AFL has been awarded a patent for “Optical Time Domain Reflectometer,” US Patent 8,411,259. The p...
Social Activity
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Copyright © 2007-2014. PennWell Corporation, Tulsa, OK. All Rights Reserved.PRIVACY POLICY | TERMS AND CONDITIONS