1 September 1995 The SWIR advantage
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The advantage of panchromatic imaging at wavelengths between 1.1 - 2.5 micrometer [short-wave infrared (SWIR)] to that of 0.5 - 1.0 micrometer [visible and near wave infrared (NWIR)] is shown by analysis and experiment in this paper. At long ranges and under low visibility conditions, the signal-to-noise ratio and image quality in the SWIR are significantly better than in the NWIR and visible spectral bands. This effect can be utilized to great advantage in airborne reconnaissance to extend the range of coverage and to improve the interpretability of the product. Such improvements apply to ground-based and space borne systems as well. Other system benefits are derived by utilizing SWIR in place of the NWIR wavelength region. Stabilization requirements can be relaxed; larger optical fabrication, alignment, environmental and boundary layer wavefront error can be tolerated; and less degradation occurs due to atmospheric turbulence and dispersion error. SWIR systems can be fabricated with some of the same optical materials available as in the NWIR and visible systems. All these effects lead to a simpler, less-expensive, and more capable imaging system that together comprise the SWIR Advantage.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Richard N. Lane, Richard N. Lane, "The SWIR advantage", Proc. SPIE 2555, Airborne Reconnaissance XIX, (1 September 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.218616; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.218616

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