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Proceedings Paper

Sea surface simulation in the infrared modeling and validation
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Paper Abstract

A physics based 3D simulation of sea surfaces is presented. The simulation is suitable for the pre-calculation of detector images for an IR camera. Synthetic views of a maritime scenario are calculated in the MWIR and LWIR spectral bands and the images are compared with data collected in a field trial. In our computer simulation the basic sea surface geometry is modeled by a composition of smooth wind driven gravity waves. Sea surface animation is introduced by time dependent control of the basic statistics. Choppy waves are included into the model to improve the realism of the rough sea. To predict the view of a thermal camera the sea surface radiance must be calculated. This is done with respect to the emitted sea surface radiance and the reflected sky radiance, using either MODTRAN or a semi-empirical model. Slope-shadowing of the sea surface waves is considered, which strongly influences the IR appearance of the sea surface near the horizon. MWIR and LWIR simulations are shown of sun glint as well as of whitecaps which depend upon wind velocity. For validation purposes appropriate data sets (images and meteorological data) were selected from field measurements. A simple maritime scenario including a floating foreground object has been prepared and views of two different thermal imagers, similar to those used in the field trials, have been simulated. The validation is done by visual inspection of measured and simulated images and in addition by numerical comparison based on image statistics. The results of the comparison are presented. For an accurate reflectance calculation it is necessary to consider the maritime sky. The model is improved by inclusion of a static two-dimensional cloud layer. The cloud distribution adjusted to measured data with respect, e.g. to power spectral density and temperature distribution.

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 May 2006
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 6239, Targets and Backgrounds XII: Characterization and Representation, 62390J (4 May 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.664838
Show Author Affiliations
Frédéric Schwenger, FGAN-FOM (Germany)
Endre Repasi, FGAN-FOM (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6239:
Targets and Backgrounds XII: Characterization and Representation
Wendell R. Watkins; Dieter Clement, Editor(s)

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