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Proceedings Paper

The SWIR advantage
Author(s): Richard N. Lane
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Paper Abstract

The advantage of panchromatic imaging at wavelengths between 1.1 - 2.5 micrometer [short-wave infrared (SWIR)] to that of 0.5 - 1.0 micrometer [visible and near wave infrared (NWIR)] is shown by analysis and experiment in this paper. At long ranges and under low visibility conditions, the signal-to-noise ratio and image quality in the SWIR are significantly better than in the NWIR and visible spectral bands. This effect can be utilized to great advantage in airborne reconnaissance to extend the range of coverage and to improve the interpretability of the product. Such improvements apply to ground-based and space borne systems as well. Other system benefits are derived by utilizing SWIR in place of the NWIR wavelength region. Stabilization requirements can be relaxed; larger optical fabrication, alignment, environmental and boundary layer wavefront error can be tolerated; and less degradation occurs due to atmospheric turbulence and dispersion error. SWIR systems can be fabricated with some of the same optical materials available as in the NWIR and visible systems. All these effects lead to a simpler, less-expensive, and more capable imaging system that together comprise the SWIR Advantage.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 September 1995
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 2555, Airborne Reconnaissance XIX, (1 September 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.218616
Show Author Affiliations
Richard N. Lane, Litton Itek Optical Systems (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2555:
Airborne Reconnaissance XIX
Wallace G. Fishell; Arthur A. Andraitis; Paul A. Henkel; Alfred C. Crane, Editor(s)

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