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23 August 2005 Tracking in clutter and effects of thermal blooming on HEL beams
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The tracking algorithm is presented that reduces the influence of the camera motion on the tracking performance. The algorithm uses a change detector. The target motion is described by parameterized optical flow. The flow parameters are estimated using Kalman filtering. The algorithm allows us to estimate the target motion without any bias associated with the camera motion. The effects of thermal blooming on high-energy laser beacon for air-to-ground directed energy system are evaluated. The laser fluence at the target and power in the bucket are evaluated for various tactical engagement scenarios and different atmospheric conditions. The critical laser power that can be efficiently transmitted through the atmosphere is evaluated. Two techniques for mitigating the effects of thermal blooming including a method based on pointing of a high energy beam "downwind" to correct for the thermal blooming tilt and focusing a high energy beam beyond the target range are evaluated. We found that the power in the bucket at the target at the optical axis of a high energy beam for tactical directed energy system increases about one order of magnitude due to correction of the thermal blooming tilt.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Mikhail Belen'kii, Kevin Hughes, Oleg Michailovich, Vincent Rye, Allen Tannenbaum, and Don Washburn "Tracking in clutter and effects of thermal blooming on HEL beams", Proc. SPIE 5895, Target-in-the-Loop: Atmospheric Tracking, Imaging, and Compensation II, 58950F (23 August 2005);

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