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Proceedings Paper

Atmospheric effects on visible and infrared scene clutter characerization
Author(s): Robert A. Sutherland; Joseph R. Montoya; Jill C. Thompson
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Paper Abstract

We examine the relationship between atmospheric-induced clutter, driven mainly by temporal variations of obscuring aerosols, and the more usual clutter attributed to spatial variations in natural background scenes. Our main approach is through the analysis of time dependent transmission-radiance measurements obtained during field experiments and through existing theories exploited in atmospheric models for generating effects of natural weather types and man made (battlefield) obscurants. We couple the obscurant modeling with other existing models for simulating natural background scenes and examine the effects of the obscurants on various scenes using recently developed analytical methods for calculating clutter metrics. Our selected clutter metric is based on what we call the block filter method that quantifies IR clutter in terms of potential false targets based on scene statistics. Our main focus is on the effects of direct transmittance, path radiance, and turbulence driven noise at multiple wavelength regimes. Preliminary results from field data show strong cross-band correlations in measured path transmission obtained over collinear lines of sight and wavelengths from the visible to infrared. The same trend holds for measured path radiance, most rigorously at the shorter wavelengths (visible and near infrared), but with a significantly enhanced noise component at the infrared wavelengths (mid and far infrared) where the effect of obscurant thermal emission comes into play. From the analysis of the imagery we have also detected both emissive and reflective contributions to the path radiance. We apply the results to four background scenes of varying degree of complexity and report the results in terms of a clutter metric representative of the particular background under both clear air and obscured conditions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 August 2002
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 4718, Targets and Backgrounds VIII: Characterization and Representation, (6 August 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.478810
Show Author Affiliations
Robert A. Sutherland, U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States)
Joseph R. Montoya, U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States)
Jill C. Thompson, U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4718:
Targets and Backgrounds VIII: Characterization and Representation
Wendell R. Watkins; Dieter Clement; William R. Reynolds, Editor(s)

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