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8 May 2018 Compact visible to extended-SWIR hyperspectral sensor for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS)
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A miniaturized, lightweight turn-key hyperspectral sensor package incorporating a single, monolithic spectrograph, telescope and navigation system is being built for airborne applications on small, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). The sensor is based on Corning’s existing MicroHSI 410 Vis/NIR Selectable Hyperspectral Airborne Remote sensing Kit (SHARK) currently used for airborne agricultural monitoring. Under DOE sponsorship, we are extending the approach to cover the full spectral range from 0.4-2.5 microns with a single spectrograph. This will enable rapid aerial surveys of vegetative mass, quality, and carbon sequestration. Other applications include mineralogy, agriculture, and intelligence/surveillance/reconnaissance (ISR).

The sensor features an Offner-type spectrograph machined from a single transmissive block. The monolithic construction provides an unprecedented combination of high performance, low cost and low size, weight, and power. It has an f/1.4 aperture, 5 nm resolution, and measures only 46mm x 60mm x 76mm. The spectrograph block is coupled to a sterling-cooled, back-thinned, HgCdTe FPA covering 0.4-2.5 micron spectral range. The flight package, including spectrograph, camera, telescope, and navigation system weighs less than 2.4kg and can fit on group 1 UASs.

In this paper, we present the design and optical performance of the sensor, and a detailed physical model of detection performance in standard, airborne hyperspectral sensing applications. At 100 Hz data rate, the sensor will achieve shotnoise limited performance with SNR > 250 from 0.4-1.7 microns and SNR<100 between 2-2.3 microns. Operating procedures for airborne monitoring of vegetative properties are also discussed. Initial test flights on a UAS are scheduled for next summer.
© (2018) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
L. Ziph-Schatzberg, R. Wiggins, P. Woodman, M. Saleh, K. Nakanishi, P. Soletsky, N. Goldstein, M. Fox, and B. Tannian "Compact visible to extended-SWIR hyperspectral sensor for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS)", Proc. SPIE 10644, Algorithms and Technologies for Multispectral, Hyperspectral, and Ultraspectral Imagery XXIV, 106441G (8 May 2018);

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