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Proceedings Paper

Stabilized optical tracking platform for airborne applications
Author(s): Richard Malueg; Nicholas J. Colella; Dennis B. Hakala
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Paper Abstract

The operations or independent small, lightweight infrared (IR) sensors, called Notifiers and Interrogators, are coordinated to detect and track theater ballistic missiles (TBMs) during boost phase from high altitude aircraft. The Notifier provides early detection of TBM launches over a wide field-of-regard facing the earth. When a target candidate is detected, an Interrogator immediately points at the object to first validate the persistence of the object, to perform TBM authentication, and to determine trajectory coordinates of the TBM. The Notifier and Interrogator sensors differ in their optical trains but otherwise are identical; the later offering nearly 3.5x higher angular resolution and a filter wheel. The sensors must rapidly assess their fields-of-regard to accomplish their roles. A unique three-axis stabilized optical tracking platform has resulted from the requirements thus imposed on angular rates, settling times, and angular stability. The line-of-sight of each earth facing sensor is pointed by a step-and-settle mirror drive that covers a hemisphere field-of-regard including nadir and the horizon. The line-of-sight is steerable through 360 degrees in azimuth and 90 degrees in elevation. This paper describes the 'proof of concept' implementation and it provides details about he designs of critical components that make up the optical tracking platform and the step-and- settle mirror drives.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 May 1995
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 2468, Acquisition, Tracking, and Pointing IX, (26 May 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.210446
Show Author Affiliations
Richard Malueg, Richard Malueg, Inc. (United States)
Nicholas J. Colella, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Dennis B. Hakala, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2468:
Acquisition, Tracking, and Pointing IX
Michael K. Masten; Larry A. Stockum, Editor(s)

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