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Proceedings Paper

Underwater depth imaging using time-correlated single photon counting
Author(s): Aurora Maccarone; Aongus McCarthy; Ximing Ren; Ryan E. Warburton; Andy M. Wallace; James Moffat; Yvan Petillot; Gerald S. Buller
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Paper Abstract

We investigate the potential of a depth imaging system for underwater environments. This system is based on the timeof- flight approach and the time correlated single-photon counting (TCSPC) technique. We report laboratory-based measurements and explore the potential of achieving sub-centimeter xyz resolution at 10’s meters stand-off distances. Initial laboratory-based experiments demonstrate depth imaging performed over distances of up to 1.8 meters and under a variety of scattering conditions. The system comprised a monostatic transceiver unit, a fiber-coupled supercontinuum laser with a wavelength tunable acousto-optic filter, and a fiber-coupled individual silicon single-photon avalanche diode (SPAD). The scanning in xy was performed using a pair of galvonometer mirrors directing both illumination and scattered returns via a coaxial optical configuration. Target objects were placed in a 110 liter capacity tank and depth images were acquired through approximately 1.7 meters of water containing different concentrations of scattering agent. Depth images were acquired in clear and highly scattering water using per-pixel acquisition times in the range 0.5-100 ms at average optical powers in the range 0.8 nW to 120 μW. Based on the laboratory measurements, estimations of potential performance, including maximum range possible, were performed with a model based on the LIDAR equation. These predictions will be presented for different levels of scattering agent concentration, optical powers, wavelengths and comparisons made with naturally occurring environments. The experimental and theoretical results indicate that the TCSPC technique has potential for highresolution underwater depth profile measurements.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 May 2015
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9492, Advanced Photon Counting Techniques IX, 94920I (13 May 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2176959
Show Author Affiliations
Aurora Maccarone, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
Aongus McCarthy, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
Ximing Ren, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
Ryan E. Warburton, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
Andy M. Wallace, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
James Moffat, Defence Science and Technology Lab. (United Kingdom)
Yvan Petillot, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)
Gerald S. Buller, Heriot-Watt Univ. (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9492:
Advanced Photon Counting Techniques IX
Mark A. Itzler; Joe C. Campbell, Editor(s)

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