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  • Low-SWaP SWIR Imager for UAVs
Sep 2010
Sensors Unlimited - UTC Aerospace SystemsRequest Info
PRINCETON, N.J., Sept. 7, 2010 — Goodrich Corp.’s ISR Systems’ Princeton team (formerly Sensors Unlimited Inc.) has introduced the smallest size, weight and power (SWaP) short-wavelength infrared (SWIR) camera for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The 640 × 512-pixel (25-µm pitch) camera weighs 120 g with the 23-mm f/1.15 lens, providing a 40° field of view. The <4.9-cu in. total volume allows it to easily fit onboard most unmanned aerial or ground vehicle systems. Currently the low-SWaP camera is installed in the nose cone of a Raven hand-launched unmanned aerial system.

The SWIR camera, sensitive from 0.7 to 1.7 µm, is installed on the Raven system with a 320 × 240-resolution long-wavelength infrared microbolometer. The camera augments the microbolometer’s thermal night imaging capabilities by enabling visual verification of laser location and imaging during thermal crossover – the hours of sunrise and sunset – when the performance of traditional thermal imaging systems is degraded.

The camera combined with the microbolometer on the same platform allows 24-h coverage from a single unmanned aerial system. This provides war fighters with new capabilities and new concept of operations while meeting the low-SWaP requirements of the modern battlefield. It also eases the physical burden on war fighters by allowing them to carry a single camera payload.


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A light-tight box that receives light from an object or scene and focuses it to form an image on a light-sensitive material or a detector. The camera generally contains a lens of variable aperture and a shutter of variable speed to precisely control the exposure. In an electronic imaging system, the camera does not use chemical means to store the image, but takes advantage of the sensitivity of various detectors to different bands of the electromagnetic spectrum. These sensors are transducers...
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