The development of an integrated sensor device BiSAM (Biological Sampling and Analysing Module) is presented which is designed for rapid detection of aerosol or dust particles potentially loaded with biological warfare agents. All functional steps from aerosol collection via immuno analysis to display of results are fully automated.
The core component of the sensor device is an ultra sensitive rapid analyser PBA (Portable Benchtop Analyser) based on a 3 dimensional immuno filtration column of large internal area, Poly HRP marker technology and kinetic optical detection. High sensitivity despite of the short measuring time, high chemical stability of the micro column and robustness against interferents make the PBA an ideal tool for fielded sensor devices. It is especially favourable to combine the PBA with a bio collector because virtually no sample preparation is necessary.
Overall, the BiSAM device is capable to detect and identify living micro organisms (bacteria, spores, viruses) as well as toxins in a measuring cycle of typically half an hour duration. In each batch up to 12 different tests can be run in parallel together with positive and negative controls to keep the false alarm rate low.
Optronics Mast Systems (US: Photonics Mast Systems) are electro-optical devices which enable a submarine crew to observe the scenery above water during dive. Unlike classical submarine periscopes they are non-hull-penetrating and therefore have no direct viewing capability. Typically they have electro-optical cameras both for the visual and for an IR spectral band with panoramic view and a stabilized line of sight. They can optionally be equipped with laser range- finders, antennas, etc. The brand name ATTICA (Advanced Two- dimensional Thermal Imager with CMOS-Array) characterizes a family of thermal cameras using focal-plane-array (FPA) detectors which can be tailored to a variety of requirements. The modular design of the ATTICA components allows the use of various detectors (InSb, CMT 3...5 μm , CMT 7...11 μm ) for specific applications. By means of a microscanner ATTICA cameras achieve full standard TV resolution using detectors with only 288 X 384 (US:240 X 320) detector elements. A typical requirement for Optronics-Mast Systems is a Quick- Look-Around capability. For FPA cameras this implies the need for a 'descan' module which can be incorporated in the ATTICA cameras without complications.
The High-Definition InfraRed (HDIR) thermal-imaging system is a thermal camera with highest geometrical resolution producing a video signal according to the HDTV (High- Definition TeleVision) standard. The thermal-imaging system is a parallel-scanning device with two fold interlace. Its detector is sensitive within the 7-11 micrometers spectral region and features 576 x n elements (n being the number of TDI stages). It has been carefully optimized in terms of range performance and size of optical entrance pupil as well as feasibility of production and yield. The 16:9 aspect ratio of the HDTV standard together with the high number of 1920 pixels/line and 1152 lines propose a drastic increase in range performance. In fact, model calculations predict an increase of up to 60% for identification range as compared to present-standard TV-compatible thermal imagers with the same vertical field of view. With the HDIR having been integrated into a German main battle tank Leopard 2, trials were undertaken in comparison with other equipment like the OPHELIOS and the Common Module WBG-X.
The design goal of this project was to develop a thermal imaging system with ultimate geometrical resolution without sacrificing thermal sensitivity. It was necessary to fulfil the criteria for a future advanced video standard. This video standard is the so-called HDTV standard (HDTV High Definition TeleVision). The thermal imaging system is a parallel scanning system working in the 7...11 micrometer spectral region. The detector for that system has to have 576 X n (n number of TDI stages) detector elements taking into account a twofold interlace. It must be carefully optimized in terms of range performance and size of optics entrance pupil as well as producibility and yield. This was done in strong interaction with the detector manufacturer. The 16:9 aspect ratio of the HDTV standard together with the high number of 1920 pixels/line impose high demands on the scanner design in terms of scan efficiency and linearity. As an advanced second generation thermal imager the system has an internal thermal reference. The electronics is fully digitized and comprises circuits for Non Uniformity Correction (NUC), scan conversion, electronic zoom, auto gain and level, edge enhancement, up/down and left/right reversion etc. It can be completely remote-controlled via a serial interface.
Most infrared optical materials exhibit a relatively strong dependence on refractive index on temperature. This dependence is about one or two orders of magnitude more severe than for the optical glasses used in the visual spectral range. As a result, important optical properties of an IR-optical system (e.g., focal length, image plane), change with temperature. This is particularly annoying with FLIRs in aircraft because the necessary refocusing increases the pilot's workload. A method to overcome that problem will be described. It makes use of automatic autocollimation, where the radiation of a special thermal target is passing the optical system twice before hitting the infrared detector. A microprocessor evaluates the detector signals and moves an optical element in such a manner that the image plane of the optical systems always remains on the detector focal plane.