Real-time Atmospheric Disturbance Compensation Using Hardware-Accelerated Speckle Imaging

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Missile Defense Agency
Amount:
$99,946.00
Award Year:
2006
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
HQ0006-06-C-7509
Agency Tracking Number:
B064-006-0148
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
EM PHOTONICS, INC.
51 East Main Street Suite 203, Newark, DE, 19711
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
071744143
Principal Investigator:
James Durbano
Chief Hardware Architect
(302) 456-9003
durbano@emphotonics.com
Business Contact:
Eric Kelmelis
Vice President
(302) 456-9003
kelmelis@emphotonics.com
Research Institution:
LAWRENCE LIVERMORE NATIONAL LABS
Carmen Carrano
7000 East Ave., L-795 P.O. Box
Livermore, CA, 94550
(925) 422-4211
Federally funded R&D center (FFRDC)
Abstract
Atmospheric disturbances are a major performance-limiting factor in long-range optical systems. In particular, for the Airborne Laser (ABL) the ability of distinguish targets from a long distance is crucial for mission success. Despite the progress in optics and sensor technology, blurring in long-range imaging caused by atmospheric movements and density changes will remain an issue. Digital signal processing techniques can be used to compensate for these atmospheric effects, using algorithms like the bispectrum speckle method developed by researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories. Unfortunately, these algorithms are computationally intensive and require several seconds to process a single frame in high-end workstations, making them unsuitable for real-time video surveillance applications. We propose the development of a custom hardware processor, based on FPGA technology, which is able to implement the speckle algorithm two orders of magnitude faster than current PCs, thereby enabling real-time video feed processing. To this end, we plan to collaborate with the creators of the speckle algorithm at LLNL. Furthermore, FPGAs are uniquely suited for airborne platforms given their footprint and power consumption. For this project, we will develop a real-time atmospheric compensation solver that occupies less than 120 cubic inches and consumes less than 25 W of power.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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