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Proceedings Paper

Research progress on a focal plane array ladar system using a laser diode transmitter and FM/cw radar principles
Author(s): Barry L. Stann; Ahmed Abou-Auf; Keith Aliberti; Mark M. Giza; Greg Ovrebo; William C. Ruff; Deborah R. Simon; Michael R. Stead
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Paper Abstract

The Army Research Laboratory is developing scannerless ladar systems for smart munition and reconnaissance applications. Here we report on progress attained over the past year related to the construction of a 32x32 pixel ladar. The 32x32 pixel architecture achieves ranging based on a frequency modulation/continuous wave (FM/cw) technique implemented by directly amplitude modulating a near-IR diode laser transmitter with a radio frequency (rf) subcarrier that is linearly frequency modulated. The diode's output is collected and projected to form an illumination field in the downrange image area. The returned signal is focused onto an array of metal-semiconductor-metal (MSM) detectors where it is detected and mixed with a delayed replica of the laser modulation signal that modulates the responsivity of each detector. The output of each detector is an intermediate frequency (IF) signal (a product of the mixing process) whose frequency is proportional to the target range. This IF signal is continuously sampled over each period of the rf modulation. Following this, a N channel signal processor based-on field-programmable gate arrays calculates the discrete Fourier transform over the IF waveform in each pixel to establish the ranges to all the scatterers and their respective amplitudes. Over the past year, we have built one and two-dimensional self-mixing MSM detector arrays at .8 and 1.55 micrometers , designed and built circuit boards for reading data out of a 32x32 pixel array, and designed an N channel FPGA signal processor for high-speed formation of range gates. In this paper we report on the development and performance of these components and the results of system tests conducted in the laboratory.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 July 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4723, Laser Radar Technology and Applications VII, (29 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.476412
Show Author Affiliations
Barry L. Stann, Army Research Lab. (United States)
Ahmed Abou-Auf, PyramidTech, Inc. (United States)
Keith Aliberti, Army Research Lab. (United States)
Mark M. Giza, Army Research Lab. (United States)
Greg Ovrebo, Army Research Lab. (United States)
William C. Ruff, Army Research Lab. (United States)
Deborah R. Simon, Army Research Lab. (United States)
Michael R. Stead, Army Research Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4723:
Laser Radar Technology and Applications VII
Gary W. Kamerman, Editor(s)

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