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Proceedings Paper

SDIO autonomous alignment system research
Author(s): Gary Golnik; Louis J. Palumbo; Alex Ballantyne; Michelle A. Thomas; Adam W. Bailey; George A. Hart; Mark A. Smith; Daniel Ray Wildt
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Paper Abstract

The Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (SDIO) has supported a series of programs designed to automate the alignment, calibration, and control processes required for High Energy Laser (HEL) systems. HEL systems, whether based in space or on mobile platforms, must be aligned autonomously in order to meet mission requirements. Since these systems are generally large and lightweight, they are mechanically flexible. This flexibility results in launch or flight disturbances to alignment, as well as variations to alignment during long-term operation. This paper describes the alignment requirements for HEL systems, using the Space Based Chemical Laser (SBL) as the basis. Much of the discussion applies to any HEL system. The background of the alignment programs is described, and the goals of the group of programs are summarized. The alignment technologies described in this paper may find use in a wide variety of other applications requiring automated control of optical systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 October 1993
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 1996, Optical Alignment, (15 October 1993); doi: 10.1117/12.160424
Show Author Affiliations
Gary Golnik, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Louis J. Palumbo, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Alex Ballantyne, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Michelle A. Thomas, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Adam W. Bailey, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
George A. Hart, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Mark A. Smith, W.J. Schafer Associates, Inc. (United States)
Daniel Ray Wildt, Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1996:
Optical Alignment
Mitchell C. Ruda, Editor(s)

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