Proceedings PaperA variable-parameter test bed for FLIR technology evaluation
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Historically, Forward Looking InfraRed (FLIR) imaging systems have undersampled because of the small number of scanned detectors in the focal plane and because the human visualizing process can compensate for aliasing in the image. The advent of larger, higher density arrays of detectors, as well as the sensitivity of computerized Automatic Target Recognizer (ATR) computers to aliasing effects has made the study of spatial and temporal sampling effects a high priority. This paper describes a test bed designed to explore the effects of varying the optical and electrical parameters of line-scanning and staring focal plane arrays (FPAs) on viewed images and on ATR algorithm effectiveness. Microscanning staring and scanning telescope optical systems are employed. Electrical support electronics to operate various types of LWIR and MWIR focal plane arrays and test software to acquire and reduce data about them are described. A real-time imaging system which can reorganize up to 16 FPA outputs into an image up to 1024 by 1024 pixels allows the effect of varying parameters to be observed directly. The system also includes a massively parallel processor which will execute various ATR algorithms on the FPA images.