4 October 2017 Atmospheric lidar co-alignment sensor: flight model electro-optical characterization campaign
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Due to the difficulty in studying the upper layer of the troposphere by using ground-based instrumentation, the conception of a space-orbit atmospheric LIDAR (ATLID) becomes necessary. ATLID born in the ESA’s EarthCare Programme framework as one of its payloads, being the first instrument of this kind that will be in the Space. ATLID will provide vertical profiles of aerosols and thin clouds, separating the relative contribution of aerosol and molecular scattering to know aerosol optical depth. It operates at a wavelength of 355 nm and has a high spectral resolution receiver and depolarization channel with a vertical resolution up to 100m from ground to an altitude of 20 km and, and up to 500m from 20km to 40km. ATLID measurements will be done from a sun-synchronous orbit at 393 km altitude, and an alignment (co-alignment) sensor (CAS) is revealed as crucial due to the way in which LIDAR analyses the troposphere. As in previous models, INTA has been in charge of part of the ATLID instrument co-alignment sensor (ATLID-CAS) electro-optical characterization campaign. CAS includes a set of optical elements to take part of the useful signal, to direct it onto the memory CCD matrix (MCCD) used for the co-alignment determination, and to focus the selected signal on the MCCD. Several tests have been carried out for a proper electro-optical characterization: CAS line of sight (LoS) determination and stability, point spread function (PSF), absolute response (AbsRes), pixel response non uniformity (PRNU), response linearity (ResLin) and spectral response. In the following lines, a resume of the flight model electrooptical characterization campaign is reported on. In fact, results concerning the protoflight model (CAS PFM) will be summarized. PFM requires flight-level characterization, so most of the previously mentioned tests must be carried out under simulated working conditions, i.e., the vacuum level (around 10-5 mbar) and temperature range (between 50°C and -30°C) that are expected during ATLID Space operation.
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Ángel Luis Valverde Guijarro, Ángel Luis Valverde Guijarro, Tomás Belenguer Dávila, Tomás Belenguer Dávila, Hugo Laguna Hernandez, Hugo Laguna Hernandez, Gonzalo Ramos Zapata, Gonzalo Ramos Zapata, } "Atmospheric lidar co-alignment sensor: flight model electro-optical characterization campaign", Proc. SPIE 10429, Lidar Technologies, Techniques, and Measurements for Atmospheric Remote Sensing XIII, 104290D (4 October 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2278734; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2278734

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