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19 November 2012 Optical reflectance tomography using TCSPC laser radar
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Tomographic signal processing is used to transform multiple one-dimensional range profiles of a target from different angles to a two-dimensional image of the object. The range profiles are measured by a time-correlated single-photon counting (TCSPC) laser radar system with approximately 50 ps range resolution and a field of view that is wide compared to the measured objects. Measurements were performed in a lab environment with the targets mounted on a rotation stage. We show successful reconstruction of 2D-projections along the rotation axis of a boat model and removal of artefacts using a mask based on the convex hull. The independence of spatial resolution and the high sensitivity at a first glance makes this an interesting technology for very long range identification of passing objects such as high altitude UAVs and orbiting satellites but also the opposite problem of ship identification from high altitude platforms. To obtain an image with useful information measurements from a large angular sector around the object is needed, which is hard to obtain in practice. Examples of reconstructions using 90 and 150° sectors are given. In addition, the projection of the final image is along the rotation axis for the measurement and if this is not aligned with a major axis of the target the image information is limited. There are also practical problems to solve, for example that the distance from the sensor to the rotation centre needs to be known with an accuracy corresponding to the measurement resolution. The conclusion is that that laser radar tomography is useful only when the sensor is fixed and the target rotates around its own axis.
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Markus Henriksson, Tomas Olofsson, Christina Grönwall, Carl Brännlund, and Lars Sjöqvist "Optical reflectance tomography using TCSPC laser radar", Proc. SPIE 8542, Electro-Optical Remote Sensing, Photonic Technologies, and Applications VI, 85420E (19 November 2012);


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