12 December 2001 Measured performance of a low-cost thermal infrared pushbroom camera based on uncooled microbolometer FPA for space applications
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Abstract
The FUEGO system is a remote sensing satellite constellation aimed at providing early fire alarms throughout the forest fire risk area of Europe and other temperate areas. An excellent revisit time (<16 min.) can be achieved from a low earth orbit constellation of 12 mini-satellites. Each mini-satellite carries infrared sensors in MIR, TIR, and VIS/NIR bands operating in push-broom mode and a depointing mirror to cover a large swath. This can ensure early detection of fire outbreaks with a 2500 km swath. This paper presents the thermal infrared (TIR) camera characteristics. The main purposes of the TIR channels are the discrimination of clouds and detection of forest fire false alarms during low light or night operation. The main requirements for the TIR camera are: spectral range 8 - 12 micrometers ; FOV equals +/- 7.2 degree(s) (177 km on ground); ground resolution 369 m; NETD < 0.4 K 300 K (blackbody temperature); large dynamic range of radiance (equivalent blackbody temperature 240 K to 380 K). The TIR pushbroom camera is built around an off-the- shelf SOFRADIR microbolometer FPA of 320 X 240 elements with a pitch of 45 micrometers . The focal plane is uncooled and operates at T equals 303 K. The paper details the tests performed on the engineering model of the camera. More particularly, radiometric characterization and MTF measurement are described. The demonstrated camera performance together with the low cost and complexity of the camera offer a large field of opportunities for future space applications.
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Herve Geoffray, Herve Geoffray, Francois Guerin, Francois Guerin, } "Measured performance of a low-cost thermal infrared pushbroom camera based on uncooled microbolometer FPA for space applications", Proc. SPIE 4540, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites V, (12 December 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.450672; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.450672
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