24 April 2010 A simulation of wide area surveillance (WAS) systems and algorithm for digital elevation model (DEM) extraction
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Abstract
With the advances in focal plane, electronics and memory storage technologies, wide area and persistence surveillance capabilities have become a reality in airborne ISR. A WAS system offers many benefits in comparison with the traditional airborne image capturing systems that provide little data overlap, both in terms of space and time. Unlike a fix-mount surveillance camera, a persistence WAS system can be deployed anywhere as desired, although the platform typically has to be in motion, say circling above an area of interest. Therefore, WAS is a perfect choice for surveillance that can provide near real time capabilities such as change detection and target tracking. However, the performance of a WAS system is still limited by the available technologies: the optics that control the field-of-view, the electronics and mechanical subsystems that control the scanning, the focal plane data throughput, and the dynamics of the platform all play key roles in the success of the system. It is therefore beneficial to develop a simulated version that can capture the essence of the system, in order to help provide insights into the design of an optimized system. We describe an approach to the simulation of a generic WAS system that allows focal plane layouts, scanning patterns, flight paths and platform dynamics to be defined by a user. The system generates simulated image data of the area ground coverage from reference databases (e.g. aerial imagery, and elevation data), based on the sensor model. The simulated data provides a basis for further algorithm development, such as image stitching/mosaic, registration, and geolocation. We also discuss an algorithm to extract the terrain elevation from the simulated data, and to compare that with the original DEM data.
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Beato T. Cheng, Beato T. Cheng, "A simulation of wide area surveillance (WAS) systems and algorithm for digital elevation model (DEM) extraction", Proc. SPIE 7668, Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR) Systems and Applications VII, 76680A (24 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.850364; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.850364
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