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Proceedings Paper

Underwater laser scanning system
Author(s): Roswell W. Austin; Seibert Quimby Duntley; Richard L. Ensminger; Theodore J. Petzold; Raymond C. Smith
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Paper Abstract

A system is described that produces high quality images through turbid waters by means of time encoded reflected light transmitted by scattering. The system consists of a compact battery operated laser scanning unit that scans the underwater scene with the laser beam in a manner similar to a television raster. Light reflected from any object in the scene varies in accordance with the reflectance of the minute spot being illuminated. This time varying intensity (TVI) signal is transmitted through the water to a remote receiver by both scattered and unscattered light where the received signal may be stored and/or displayed. The underwater laser scanning unit can be moved freely about the field of interest by scuba diver or ROV, unencumbered by entangling umbilicals, and can send real-time images over distances of 15 to 20 attenuation lengths to observers in a shirt-sleeve environment for critical viewing on an image display monitor. This previously undescribed system was developed in the early 1970s for proof of concept tests and used technology that is now 18 or more years old. The physical principles and the experimental hardware are described and examples are given of images providing exquisite detail that were made in an experimental tank together with some images obtained in ocean trials.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 December 1991
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 1537, Underwater Imaging, Photography, and Visibility, (1 December 1991); doi: 10.1117/12.48872
Show Author Affiliations
Roswell W. Austin, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)
Seibert Quimby Duntley, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)
Richard L. Ensminger, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)
Theodore J. Petzold, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)
Raymond C. Smith, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1537:
Underwater Imaging, Photography, and Visibility
Richard W. Spinrad, Editor(s)

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