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Proceedings Paper

Continuous outdoor operation of an all-sky polarization imager
Author(s): Joseph A. Shaw; Nathan J. Pust; Benjamin Staal; Jennifer Johnson; Andrew R. Dahlberg
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Paper Abstract

With the increasing use of polarization as an added dimension in imagery for a variety of scientific, defense, and civilian applications comes a need for better understanding of how the natural environment affects polarization signatures. In the visible and near-infrared spectral range, the most important environmental component is polarized skylight. To provide data to help improve understanding of how atmospheric polarization varies with aerosols, clouds, and surface reflectance, an all-sky polarization imager has been designed, built, calibrated, and operated in a variety of field experiments. This paper describes modifications made to that instrument to enable continuous, unattended outdoor operation. The primary modifications were development of a weather-proof housing and an automated sun occulter incorporating an on-board microcontroller that continually calculates solar position and moves an occulting disk on a thin metal band to prevent direct sunlight from falling on the polarimeter lens. This occulter is designed to not obstruct the principal scattering plane, defined as the plane containing the zenith, the Sun, and the observer.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 April 2010
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7672, Polarization: Measurement, Analysis, and Remote Sensing IX, 76720A (26 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.851374
Show Author Affiliations
Joseph A. Shaw, Montana State Univ. (United States)
Nathan J. Pust, Montana State Univ. (United States)
Benjamin Staal, Montana State Univ. (United States)
Jennifer Johnson, Montana State Univ. (United States)
Andrew R. Dahlberg, Montana State Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7672:
Polarization: Measurement, Analysis, and Remote Sensing IX
David B. Chenault; Dennis H. Goldstein, Editor(s)

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