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15 October 2012 Multispectral imaging system on tethered balloons for optical remote sensing education and outreach
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A set of low-cost, compact multispectral imaging systems have been developed for deployment on tethered balloons for education and outreach based on basic principles of optical remote sensing. The imagers use tiny CMOS cameras with low-cost optical filters to obtain images in red and near-infrared bands, and a more recent version include a blue band. The red and near-infrared bands are used primarily for identifying and monitoring vegetation through the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), while the blue band is used for studying water turbidity, identifying water and ice, and so forth. The imagers are designed to be carried by tethered balloons at altitudes up to approximately 50 m. Engineering and physics students at Montana State University-Bozeman gained hands-on experience during the early stages of designing and building the imagers, and a wide variety of university and college students are using the imagers for a broad range of applications to learn about multispectral imaging, remote sensing, and applications typically involving some aspect of environmental science.
© (2012) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Joseph A. Shaw, Paul W. Nugent, Nathan Kaufman, Nathan J. Pust, Devin Mikes, Cassie Knierim, Nathan Faulconer, Randal Larimer, Angela DesJardins, and Berk Knighton "Multispectral imaging system on tethered balloons for optical remote sensing education and outreach", Proc. SPIE 8481, Optics Education and Outreach II, 84810T (15 October 2012);

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