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Atmospheric effects on laser eye safety and damage to instrumentation
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Paper Abstract

Electro-optical sensors as well as unprotected human eyes are extremely sensitive to laser radiation and can be permanently damaged from direct or reflected beams. Laser detector/eye hazard depends on the interaction between the laser beam and the media in which it traverses. The environmental conditions including terrain features, atmospheric particulate and water content, and turbulence, may alter the laser’s effect on the detector/eye. It is possible to estimate the performance of an electro-optical system as long as the atmospheric propagation of the laser beam can be adequately modeled.

More recent experiments and modeling of atmospheric optics phenomena such as inner scale effect, aperture averaging, atmospheric attenuation in NIR-SWIR, and Cn2 modeling justify an update of previous eye/detector safety modeling. In the present work, the influence of the atmospheric channel on laser safety for personnel and instrumentation is shown on the basis of theoretical and experimental data of laser irradiance statistics for different atmospheric conditions. A method for evaluating the probability of damage and hazard distances associated with the use of laser systems in a turbulent atmosphere operating in the visible and NIR-SWIR portions of the electromagnetic spectrum is presented. It can be used as a performance prediction model for directed energy engagement of ground-based or air-based systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 October 2017
PDF: 19 pages
Proc. SPIE 10433, Electro-Optical and Infrared Systems: Technology and Applications XIV, 104330P (6 October 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2277934
Show Author Affiliations
Arkadi Zilberman, Ben-Gurion Univ. of the Negev (Israel)
The Katif R&D Ctr. for coastal deserts development (Israel)
Natan S. Kopeika, Ben-Gurion Univ. of the Negev (Israel)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10433:
Electro-Optical and Infrared Systems: Technology and Applications XIV
David A. Huckridge; Reinhard Ebert; Helge Bürsing, Editor(s)

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