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Proceedings Paper

Contamination control of space-based laser instruments
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Paper Abstract

Space based laser missions have gained their popularity in areas such as: communication, power beaming, ranging, altimetry, and Light Detection and Ranging. The capabilities of 1.0 micron lasers offer a host of improvements in the knowledge gaps that exist and help promote our understanding of our Earth and lunar environments as well as planetary and space science applications. Some past and present National Aeronautics and Space Administration missions that have been developed for increasing our universal knowledge of such environments and applications include: The Shuttle Laser Altimeter, Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter, Geoscience Laser Altimeter System, Mercury Laser Altimeter, Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation, and Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter. The effort of contamination control depends on the specific performance goals, instrument designs, and planned operating scenarios of such missions. Trace amounts of contamination have been shown to greatly reduce the performance of 1.0 micron space based laser systems. In addition, the type of contamination plays an important role in the degree of degradation and helps to define the "contamination sensitivity" of the mission. A space based laser mission is considered highly contamination sensitive and therefore requires an unprecedented contamination control effort.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 September 2006
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6291, Optical Systems Degradation, Contamination, and Stray Light: Effects, Measurements, and Control II, 629104 (7 September 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.681175
Show Author Affiliations
Philip Chen, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Randy Hedgeland, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Larry Ramsey, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Rachel Rivera, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Karrie Houston, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6291:
Optical Systems Degradation, Contamination, and Stray Light: Effects, Measurements, and Control II
O. Manuel Uy; John C. Fleming; Michael G. Dittman, Editor(s)

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