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Multi-Channel Long-Range Wind LIDAR
Phone: (512) 479-7732
Phone: (512) 691-8171
Advanced systems for wind sampling and measurement are a prime area for technical innovation. Applications range from atmospheric and climate modeling to aerospace vehicle design. Systems with higher temporal resolution and fidelity offer the ability to record increasingly transient atmospheric phenomena, leading to improved feedback for atmospheric modeling and for real-time adaptive systems for flight dynamics and wind power generation systems. Many of these applications are relevant to NASArsquo;s goals and interests.nbsp;Systems amp; Processes Engineering Corporation (SPEC) has proposed a Multi-Channel Long-Range Wind LIDAR system toward increasing the scan rate, and therefore the temporal resolution, of advanced Wind LIDAR systems. The proposed system scales up from a developed single-channel fiber optic based, eye-safe wind LIDAR, initially designed for UAV systems and brought to a bread board level through Army and NASA programs. The single-channel sensor assembly is composed of a fiber optic transceiver consisting of a narrow band seed, acousto-optic modulator for frequency shift and pulse forming, a three-stage erbium/yttrium-doped fiber amplifier, and a coherent receiver, all operating at an eye-safe wavelength of 1550 nm. For multi-channel operation, the LIDAR signal is split prior to the third gain stage. The system electronics and computational stack are in PCIe/104 format, allowing miniaturized light-weight packaging suitable for small UAV applications and the entire range of commercial and military aircraft. By further developing the capabilities of the proposed wind LIDAR system, specifically by increasing the channel count the overall system scan rate can be increased proportionately thereby improving the temporal resolution. The proposed Phase II effort will result in a working prototype at the TRL 6 level.
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