Handheld Real Time (RT) Climatic/Environmental Sensor
Small Business Information
101 Industrial Blvd., Turners Falls, MA, 01376
AbstractDoD is required to comply with EPA acceptable opacity levels, whereas training operations often involve smoke plumes and a portable measurement tool is needed for regulatory compliance. Passive imaging techniques for opacity measurements unfortunately are constrained by two limits: First, the observer must be located between the sun and the target plume of interest and second, the scene must be bright enough to ensure images have sufficient contrast ratios. That is, the sun must be located behind the observer's camera and it must be daytime. Although the first requirement can be met through careful planning, most military missions necessarily occur under the cover of nightfall, where such imaging methods are unusable. We describe a portable passive CCD imager integrated with an eye-safe lidar rangefinder to acquire plume backscatter data to support both daytime contrast CCD imaging opacity measurement and nighttime operation, via the "lidar equation." If in the field it becomes impractical to observe with the sun behind the observer, the lidar beam can also supplant measurements during daytime hours from locations where forward scattered light pollution from the sun's direct beam would otherwise render radiance CCD imaging impossible. The R&D of this sensor suite involves both hardware and software algorithms.
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