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Proceedings Paper

Incoherent sub-terahertz radiation source with a photomixer array for active imaging in smoky environments
Author(s): Naofumi Shimizu; Ken Matsuyama; Hidetake Uchida
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Paper Abstract

We propose a sub-terahertz (THz) illuminator suitable for use with a THz camera when exploring objects within and behind smoke at the scene of a fire. The illuminator contains a photomixer array and each photomixer generates incoherent sub-THz waves from a single-mode laser light and optical noise using photomixing. The incoherency of the generated sub-THz waves enables us to raise their intensity by increasing the number of photomixers in operation, which makes it possible to realize very bright sub-THz illumination. Consequently, objects being under searched for within or behind smoke can be clearly illuminated using the illuminator and visualized by the THz camera even though they are surrounded by thick and/or high-temperature smoke. To verify our concept, we conducted active imaging with coherent and incoherent sub-THz radiation from a photomixer array utilizing reflection geometry. Although the contrast of the image was improved by increasing number of photomixers in operation on the imaging with coherent radiation, the shape of the target was degraded by the interference pattern of the illuminated sub-THz waves. The contrast of the image when using incoherent radiation was improved without obscuring the shape of the target by increasing the number of photomixers. We also confirmed that there was good visibility for active imaging using incoherent sub-THz illumination even though thick smoke was presented. These results indicate that the use of incoherent sub-THz waves and an array of photomixers should enable a sub-THz illuminator with a high level of brightness to be used for active imaging

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 March 2015
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9362, Terahertz, RF, Millimeter, and Submillimeter-Wave Technology and Applications VIII, 936204 (14 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2076095
Show Author Affiliations
Naofumi Shimizu, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. (Japan)
Ken Matsuyama, Tokyo Univ. of Science (Japan)
Hidetake Uchida, Tokyo Univ. of Science (Japan)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9362:
Terahertz, RF, Millimeter, and Submillimeter-Wave Technology and Applications VIII
Laurence P. Sadwick; Tianxin Yang, Editor(s)

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