A series of airborne imaging experiments have been conducted on the island of Maui. The imaging platform was a Twin Otter aircraft, which circled ground target sites. The typical platform altitude was 3000 meters, with a slant range to the target of 9000 meters. This experiment was performed during the day using solar illuminated target buildings, and at night with spotlights used to simulate point sources. Imaging system performance predictions were calculated using standard atmospheric turbulence models, and aircraft boundary layer models. Several different measurement approaches were then used to estimate the actual system performance, and make comparisons with the calculations.
Preliminary experiments toward the implementation of Doppler spectral scanning differential absorption lidar (DSS DIAL) are described. In separate tests, CO2 laser pulses were reflected from either a ground-based retroreflector (36-km round-trip distance) or a retroreflector on the GEOS-3 satellite (approximately 2000-km round-trip distance). The returns were split into a reference channel and an absorptive gas-cell channel. The light was coherently detected with heterodyne receivers and analyzed. Results from the ground-based system produced data that matched expected values in one case but its repeatability remains to be determined. We are currently investigating the satellite-based system to assess the DSS DIAL technique.