28 April 2009 An ultracompact laser terrain mapper for deployment onboard unmanned aerial vehicles
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Abstract
Airborne laser terrain mapping systems have redefined the realm of topographic mapping. Lidars with kilohertz collection rates and long ranges have made airborne surveying a quick, efficient and highly productive endeavor. Despite the current industry efforts toward improving airborne lidar range, collection rate, resolution and accuracies, and with the advent of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and their myriad advantages, military and civil applications alike are looking for very compact and rugged lidar systems that can fit within the tight volumetric, form-factor, mass and power constraints imposed by UAVs. Optech has developed a very compact airborne laser terrain mapper that's geared toward UAV deployment. The system is composed of a highly integrated unit that combines a lidar transceiver, a position orientation sensor and control electronics in a 1 cubic foot - 57 lb package. Such level of compactness is achieved by employing the latest laser technology trends along with featuring very compact optical design, and using the latest control and data collection architecture technology. This paper describes the UAV requirements that drove the system design, the technology employed and optimizations implemented in the system to achieve its ultra-compact size.
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Marwan W. Hussein, Marwan W. Hussein, Jeffrey W. Tripp, Jeffrey W. Tripp, Brian R. Hill, Brian R. Hill, } "An ultracompact laser terrain mapper for deployment onboard unmanned aerial vehicles", Proc. SPIE 7307, Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR) Systems and Applications VI, 73070B (28 April 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.818361; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.818361
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