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15 October 2009 GaN-based THz advanced quantum cascade lasers for manned and unmanned systems
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In recent years the use of Unmanned Autonomous Vehicles (UAV) has seen a wider range of applications. However, their applications are restricted due to (a) advanced integrated sensing and processing electronics and (b) limited energy storage or on-board energy generation to name a few. The availability of a wide variety of sensing elements, operating at room temperatures, provides a great degree of flexibility with an extended application domain. Though sensors responding to a variable spectrum of input excitations ranging from (a) chemical, (b) biological, (c) atmospheric, (d) magnetic and (e) visual/IR imaging have been implemented in UAVs, the use of THz as a technology has not been implemented due to the absence of systems operating at room temperature. The integration of multi-phenomenological onboard sensors on small and miniature unmanned air vehicles will dramatically impact the detection and processing of challenging targets, such as humans carrying weapons or wearing suicide bomb vests. Unmanned air vehicles have the potential of flying over crowds of people and quickly discriminating non-threat humans from treat humans. The state of the art in small and miniature UAV's has progressed to vehicles of less than 1 pound in weight but with payloads of only a fraction of a pound. Uncooled IR sensors, such as amorphous silicon and vanadium oxide microbolometers with MRT's of less than 70mK and requiring power of less than 250mW, are available for integration into small UAV's. These sensors are responsive only up to approximately 14 microns and do not favorably compare with THz imaging systems for remotely detecting and classifying concealed weapons and bombs. In the following we propose the use of THz GaN-based QCL operating at room temperature as a possible alternative.
© (2009) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
A. F. M. Anwar, Tariq Manzur, Kevin R. Lefebvre, and Edward M. Carapezza "GaN-based THz advanced quantum cascade lasers for manned and unmanned systems", Proc. SPIE 7480, Unmanned/Unattended Sensors and Sensor Networks VI, 748012 (15 October 2009);

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