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Proceedings Paper

Development of an optical test bench for use in production
Author(s): Andre Girard
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Paper Abstract

Forward-Looking InfraRed (FUR) and TV sensors, laser rangefinders and beamriders have now reached enough maturity to be integrated in Electro-Optical (E-O) systems used in air systems such as the Air Defense Anti-Thnk System (ADATS ) produced by Oerlikon Aerospace Inc and selected by the U.S. and Canadian Armed Forces as their low-level air defense system. When testing such systems, flexibility, reproducibility and automation must be considered, especially when performing complex tests such as boresighting, coded laser beam mapping, target tracking, laser ranging, sensor resolution and so forth. We have designed and developed an optical test bench, the E-O Test Station* (EOTS), to perform these tests in the factoiy during system integration and acceptance. The EOTS consists of a special one-meter aperture f/3 collimator equipped with an advanced Focal Plane Test Unit (FPTU). The station can be moved in the factory from one test bay to another, be aligned with a Unit Under Test (UUT) and automatically perform various E-O production tests in a full laser safety and controlled environment. In order for the EOTS collimator to meet the microradian alignment accuracy requirements, we have designed and developed a special AutoCollimator System (ACS) used in the Company Quality Assurance Department as the primary EOTS calibration standard. We also designed and developed a Laser Alignment Periscope System (LAPS) installed inside the EOTS and used by the operator to ensure that the collimator alignment is maintained during testing. The EOTS and the ACS have other applications as well, like testing retrorefiection effects of integrated E-O systems used in tanks, helicopters, etc., and in civilian applications such as the calibration of laser intersatellite communication systems and the testing of lidars used in pollution monitoring. A variant field version called Sensor Test Station is under development. This project was partly funded by the Canadian Government.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1990
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 1309, Infrared Imaging Systems: Design, Analysis, Modeling, and Testing, (1 October 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.21774
Show Author Affiliations
Andre Girard, Oerlikon Aerospace Inc. (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1309:
Infrared Imaging Systems: Design, Analysis, Modeling, and Testing

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