10 May 2011 A unique, accurate LWIR optics measurement system
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Abstract
A compact low-cost LWIR test station has been developed that provides real time MTF testing of IR optical systems and EO imaging systems. The test station is intended to be operated by a technician and can be used to measure the focal length, blur spot size, distortion, and other metrics of system performance. The challenges and tradeoffs incorporated into this instrumentation will be presented. The test station performs the measurement of an IR lens or optical system's first order quantities (focal length, back focal length) including on and off-axis imaging performance (e.g., MTF, resolution, spot size) under actual test conditions to enable the simulation of their actual use. Also described is the method of attaining the needed accuracies so that derived calculations like focal length (EFL = image shift/tan(theta)) can be performed to the requisite accuracy. The station incorporates a patented video capture technology and measures MTF and blur characteristics using newly available lowcost LWIR cameras. This allows real time determination of the optical system performance enabling faster measurements, higher throughput and lower cost results than scanning systems. Multiple spectral filters are also accommodated within the test stations which facilitate performance evaluation under various spectral conditions.
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Stephen D. Fantone, Daniel G. Orband, "A unique, accurate LWIR optics measurement system", Proc. SPIE 8014, Infrared Imaging Systems: Design, Analysis, Modeling, and Testing XXII, 801413 (10 May 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.884267; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.884267
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KEYWORDS
Modulation transfer functions

Long wavelength infrared

Imaging systems

Infrared imaging

Cameras

Image analysis

Optical testing

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