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Proceedings Paper

Optics and mechanisms for the geoscience laser altimetry system transmit path and the solar ozone limb sounding experiment II
Author(s): Jason G. Budinoff; Scott R. Weedon; Fil A. Parong
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Paper Abstract

The Geoscience Laser Altimetry System (GLAS) is a laser altimeter and LIDAR instrument on the Ice, Clouds, Environment Satellite (ICESat) mission. GLAS used 3 Nd:YAG lasers with 40 Hz rep rates at 4 Watts. All 3 lasers had to fire along a common beam path. Several mechanisms and optical assemblies were developed to allow the 3 lasers to fire down a common transmit path and exit the instrument. In the receive path of the GLAS instrument altimeter, there was a primary and redundant altimeter detector. A mechanism was designed, fabricated, and tested which would divert the incoming altimeter beam path from one detector to another. This mechanism was functionally similar to the mechanisms used on the transmit path. The Solar Ozone Limb Sounding Experiment II (SOLSE2) instrument had a requirement for rotating a visible (VIS) or ultra-violet (UV) filter into the instrument optical path. Both GLAS and SOLSE2 had similar operational and survival environments and lifetime requirements. A novel, precision rotational latching mechanism was designed to fulfill the requirements of both missions. The GLAS instrument had driving stability and repeatability requirements, such that if the mechanism met these stringent requirements, it would more than surpass the required performance for the SOLSE2 mechanism. The resulting mechanism, referred to as a “select mechanism” since it allows selection between 2 positions, was successfully designed and implemented for both missions. This paper describes the transmit path optical structures and select mechanisms of the GLAS & SOLSE2 instruments.

Paper Details

Date Published: 27 October 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5176, Optomechanics 2003, (27 October 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.505263
Show Author Affiliations
Jason G. Budinoff, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Scott R. Weedon, Orbital Sciences Corp. (United States)
Fil A. Parong, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5176:
Optomechanics 2003
Alson E. Hatheway, Editor(s)

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