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Proceedings Paper

Air-LUSI: Autonomous telescope design for lunar spectral irradiance measurements
Author(s): Andrew Cataford; S. Andrew Gadsden; Kevin Turpie
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Paper Abstract

air-LUSI is a NASA sponsored project which uses optical and robotic equipment to autonomously capture radiometric measurements of the Moon from within the science pod of an ER-2 aircraft while flying at an altitude of 70,000 feet. The air-LUSI instrument was deployed for its first engineering flight campaign on August 1st and 2nd, 2018 and captured the worlds first High Altitude Lunar Spectral Irradiance (LUSI) measurements from a semi-ground based system. By implementing instrumentation into NASA's ER-2 aircraft to produce an Airborne Lunar Observatory, unprecedented LUSI measurements can be obtained that are unadulterated from the Earth's atmosphere. By compiling a comprehensive LUSI dataset for a series of lunar phases, a Lunar Calibration Model can be further refined to provide enhanced remote sensing capabilities for some instruments in NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS). This document presents information about the flight path of the ER-2 to capture High Altitude LUSI measurements, the mechanical design of the robotic telescope, the environmental operating conditions of the design, the in flight tracking performance of the system, and the first raw lunar spectrum captured at 70,000 feet.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 May 2019
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 10998, Advanced Optics for Imaging Applications: UV through LWIR IV, 109980O (14 May 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2519802
Show Author Affiliations
Andrew Cataford, Univ. of Guelph (Canada)
S. Andrew Gadsden, Univ. of Guelph (Canada)
Kevin Turpie, Univ. of Maryland, Baltimore County (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10998:
Advanced Optics for Imaging Applications: UV through LWIR IV
Jay N. Vizgaitis; Peter L. Marasco; Jasbinder S. Sanghera, Editor(s)

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