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Proceedings Paper

Real-time full-motion color Flash lidar for target detection and identification
Author(s): Roy Nelson; Eric Coppock; Rex Craig; Jeremy Craner; Dennis Nicks; Kurt von Niederhausern
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Paper Abstract

Greatly improved understanding of areas and objects of interest can be gained when real time, full-motion Flash LiDAR is fused with inertial navigation data and multi-spectral context imagery. On its own, full-motion Flash LiDAR provides the opportunity to exploit the z dimension for improved intelligence vs. 2-D full-motion video (FMV). The intelligence value of this data is enhanced when it is combined with inertial navigation data to produce an extended, georegistered data set suitable for a variety of analysis. Further, when fused with multispectral context imagery the typical point cloud now becomes a rich 3-D scene which is intuitively obvious to the user and allows rapid cognitive analysis with little or no training. Ball Aerospace has developed and demonstrated a real-time, full-motion LIDAR system that fuses context imagery (VIS to MWIR demonstrated) and inertial navigation data in real time, and can stream these information-rich geolocated/fused 3-D scenes from an airborne platform. In addition, since the higher-resolution context camera is boresighted and frame synchronized to the LiDAR camera and the LiDAR camera is an array sensor, techniques have been developed to rapidly interpolate the LIDAR pixel values creating a point cloud that has the same resolution as the context camera, effectively creating a high definition (HD) LiDAR image. This paper presents a design overview of the Ball TotalSight™ LIDAR system along with typical results over urban and rural areas collected from both rotary and fixed-wing aircraft. We conclude with a discussion of future work.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 May 2015
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 9461, Radar Sensor Technology XIX; and Active and Passive Signatures VI, 94611R (21 May 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2184069
Show Author Affiliations
Roy Nelson, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
Eric Coppock, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
Rex Craig, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
Jeremy Craner, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
Dennis Nicks, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)
Kurt von Niederhausern, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9461:
Radar Sensor Technology XIX; and Active and Passive Signatures VI
G. Charmaine Gilbreath; Chadwick Todd Hawley; Kenneth I. Ranney; Armin Doerry, Editor(s)

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