22 May 2017 The selectable hyperspectral airborne remote sensing kit (SHARK) as an enabler for precision agriculture
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Abstract
Hyperspectral imaging (HSI) has been used for over two decades in laboratory research, academic, environmental and defense applications. In more recent time, HSI has started to be adopted for commercial applications in machine vision, conservation, resource exploration, and precision agriculture, to name just a few of the economically viable uses for the technology. Corning Incorporated (Corning) has been developing and manufacturing HSI sensors, sensor systems, and sensor optical engines, as well as HSI sensor components such as gratings and slits for over a decade and a half. This depth of experience and technological breadth has allowed Corning to design and develop unique HSI spectrometers with an unprecedented combination of high performance, low cost and low Size, Weight, and Power (SWaP). These sensors and sensor systems are offered with wavelength coverage ranges from the visible to the Long Wave Infrared (LWIR). The extremely low SWaP of Corning’s HSI sensors and sensor systems enables their deployment using limited payload platforms such as small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

This paper discusses use of the Corning patented monolithic design Offner spectrometer, the microHSI™, to build a highly compact 400-1000 nm HSI sensor in combination with a small Inertial Navigation System (INS) and micro-computer to make a complete turn-key airborne remote sensing payload. This Selectable Hyperspectral Airborne Remote sensing Kit (SHARK) has industry leading SWaP (1.5 lbs) at a disruptively low price due, in large part, to Corning’s ability to manufacture the monolithic spectrometer out of polymers (i.e. plastic) and therefore reduce manufacturing costs considerably. The other factor in lowering costs is Corning’s well established in house manufacturing capability in optical components and sensors that further enable cost-effective fabrication. The competitive SWaP and low cost of the microHSI™ sensor is approaching, and in some cases less than the price point of Multi Spectral Imaging (MSI) sensors. Specific designs of the Corning microHSI™ SHARK visNIR turn-key system are presented along with salient performance characteristics. Initial focus market areas include precision agriculture and historic and recent microHSI™ SHARK prototype test results are presented.
Conference Presentation
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Rick Holasek, Keith Nakanishi, Leah Ziph-Schatzberg , Jeff Santman, Patrick Woodman, Richard Zacaroli , Richard Wiggins , "The selectable hyperspectral airborne remote sensing kit (SHARK) as an enabler for precision agriculture", Proc. SPIE 10213, Hyperspectral Imaging Sensors: Innovative Applications and Sensor Standards 2017, 1021304 (22 May 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2267856; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2267856
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