Polarimetric Sensors for Robotic Vehicle Perception
Small Business Information
POLARIS SENSOR TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
5710 Jones Valley Drive, Huntsville, AL, 35802
AbstractPolarization imaging holds promise for providing significant improvements in contrast in a number of target detection and discrimination applications. In several recent development efforts, it has been demonstrated that manmade objects have a significantly stronger polarization signal than natural backgrounds resulting in good contrast that complements the conventionally imaged infrared signature. Other recent research has suggested that polarization sensing may increase detection range through optically dense media such as fog or aerosol laden atmosphere. However, these experimental systems frequently require long data acquisition times, which results in artifacts in the polarization imagery due to platform or target motion. Additionally, calibration and investigation of systematic errors in these systems is difficult and robust calibration procedures have not been fully demonstrated. Polaris Sensor Technologies, Inc is proposing to develop an LWIR imaging polarimeter that captures a complete Stokes vector in a single image. The approach chosen utilizes birefringent polarization components in a unique configuration that eliminates polarization artifacts due to target or platform motion. In Phase I, a prototype instrument will be designed complete with component specifications, schematics, data reduction and calibration algorithms. A thorough performance analysis of the design will also be performed.
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