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Proceedings Paper

Emerging liquid crystal waveguide technology for low SWaP active short-wave infrared imagers
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Paper Abstract

Raytheon’s innovative active short wave infrared (SWIR) imager uses Vescent Photonic’s emerging liquid crystal waveguide (LCWG) technology to continuously steer the illumination laser beam over the imager field of view (FOV). This approach instantly illuminates a very small fraction of the FOV, which significantly reduces the laser power compared to flash illumination. This reduced laser power directly leads to a reduction in the size, weight and power (SWaP) of the laser. The reduction in laser power reduces the input power and thermal rejection, which leads to additional reduction in the SWaP of the power supplies and thermal control. The high-speed steering capability of the LCWG enables the imager’s SWaP reduction. The SWaP reduction is possible using either global or rolling shutter detectors. In both cases, the LCWG steers the laser beam over the entire FOV while the detector is integrating. For a rolling shutter detector, the LCWG synchronizes the steering with the rolling shutter to illuminate only regions currently integrating. Raytheon’s approach enables low SWaP active SWIR imagers without compromising image quality. This paper presents the results of Raytheon’s active SWIR imager demonstration including steering control and synchronization with the detector integration.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 March 2015
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 9384, Emerging Liquid Crystal Technologies X, 93840M (11 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2076835
Show Author Affiliations
Sean D. Keller, Raytheon Missile Systems (United States)
Gerald P. Uyeno, Raytheon Missile Systems (United States)
Ted Lynch, Raytheon Missile Systems (United States)
Scott R. Davis, Vescent Photonics Inc. (United States)
Scott D. Rommel, Vescent Photonics Inc. (United States)
Juan Pino, Vescent Photonics Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9384:
Emerging Liquid Crystal Technologies X
Liang-Chy Chien; Harry J. Coles; Hirotsugu Kikuchi; Ivan I. Smalyukh, Editor(s)

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