With the recent developments in multi-spectral detector technology the interest in common aperture, common focal plane
multi-spectral imaging systems is increasing. Such systems are particularly desirable for military applications where
increased levels of target discrimination and identification are required in cost-effective, rugged, lightweight systems.
During the optical design of dual waveband or multi-spectral systems, the options for material selection are limited. This
selection becomes even more restrictive for military applications as material resilience and thermal properties must be
considered in addition to colour correction.
In this paper we discuss the design challenges that lightweight multi-spectral common aperture systems present along
with some potential design solutions. Consideration will be given to material selection for optimum colour correction as
well as material resilience and thermal correction. This discussion is supported using design examples that are currently
in development at Qioptiq.
N. A. Thompson, N. A. Thompson,
"Common aperture multispectral optics for military applications", Proc. SPIE 8353, Infrared Technology and Applications XXXVIII, 83531X (31 May 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.919089; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.919089