20 May 2011 The infrared-based early warning system for bird strike prevention at Frankfurt airport
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Flocks of migratory birds are very often using geographic structures like rivers, valleys or coast lines for orientation. Wherever the preferred migration routes are crossing the approach corridor of an airport there is an increased risk of bird strike. Flocks of birds crossing the runway corridor of the new runway Northwest of the Frankfurt airport are kept under surveillance now with in total three watch towers located at the river Main which in this case is the preferred used line of orientation. Each of the watch towers carries an early warning system which consists of two pairs of stereoscopic thermal imaging cameras sensitive in the mid wavelength infrared range (3 - 5 μm). A stereoscopic pair measures the swarm size, direction of flight and velocity in real time and with high accuracy. From these results an early warning is derived under all relevant weather conditions. The fixed focus thermal imaging cameras are thermally compensated and designed for ultra low image distortion. Each stereoscopic pair is aligned in the sub-pixel range and is controlled by a reference beam to ensure that the alignment is preserved under all environmental conditions and over a very long time. The technical concept is discussed and the design of the realized warning system at the Frankfurt airport is presented.
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M. Münzberg, A. Schilling, H. Schlemmer, H. Vogel, H. Cramer, J. Schlosshauer, "The infrared-based early warning system for bird strike prevention at Frankfurt airport", Proc. SPIE 8012, Infrared Technology and Applications XXXVII, 80120C (20 May 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.884534; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.884534

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