Optical EngineeringOptical design of common aperture, common focal plane, multispectral optics for military applications
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With recent developments in multispectral detector technology, the interest in common aperture, common focal plane multispectral imaging systems is increasing. Such systems are particularly desirable for military applications, where increased levels of target discrimination and identification are required in cost-effective, rugged, lightweight systems. During the optical design of dual waveband or multispectral systems, the options for material selection are limited. This selection becomes even more restrictive for military applications, where material resilience, thermal properties, and color correction must be considered. We discuss the design challenges that lightweight multispectral common aperture systems present, along with some potential design solutions. Consideration is given to material selection for optimum color correction, as well as material resilience and thermal correction. This discussion is supported using design examples currently in development at Qioptiq.