Optical EngineeringDesign of fiber optic relayed laser radar
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We have designed a new ladar (laser radar) for the detection of objects off the line of sight. The ladar operates by transmitting a signal through free space into a fiber optic relay, and receiving the returning signal from a obstacle. The transmitted signal is a laser diode emitting at 1550 nm, ideal from the aspects of eye safety and minimum loss in a silica fiber. Its immediate application is in railroad-transportation safety, where it detects obstacles present on the track with a very high probability of detection and a very low probability of false alarm.