Multi-Sensor Based Superresolution Hyperspectral Imaging Ladar System
Navy SBIR FY2008.2

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2008.2
Topic No.: N08-147
Topic Title: Multi-Sensor Based Superresolution Hyperspectral Imaging Ladar System
Proposal No.: N082-147-0062
Firm: Physical Optics Corporation
Applied Technologies Division
20600 Gramercy Place, Bldg.100
Torrance, California 90501
Contact: Wei Peng
Phone: (310) 320-3088
Web Site:
Abstract: To address the Navy's need for an innovative laser radar image and data processing technology for helicopter vertical lift in visually degraded environments (VDEs), Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Multisensor-based Superresolution Hyperspectral Imaging Ladar (MSHIL) system. This MSHIL system is based on an innovative sensor fusion of gated laser radar, visual and video sensors for multiband spectral detection, hyperspectral imagery, and multiframe superresolution technologies. This system offers: 1) high image and range resolutions (over 1,024 x 720 pixels and within centimeters for a 100 to 1,000 ft range); 2) wide FOV of over 60 degrees x 120 degrees; 3) real-time operation (over 1,000 image correlations per second); 4) compactness, light weight, and low power consumption; and 5) reliability with over 99% probability of detection. In Phase I POC will demonstrate the feasibility of the MSHIL system by defining system requirements and architecture design, conducting software simulation, and assembling a scaled-down TRL 4 MSHIL system prototype. In Phase II POC will develop a MSHIL engineering prototype system and demonstrate its capability for real-time high-resolution wide-FOV helicopter operations.
Benefits: Commercial applications of the MSHIL system include the many aerospace industries that need integrated decision-making, timely and accurate information, and pattern recognition, such as scheduling/planning systems, autonomous vehicles, and aircraft operation. This effort will enable precise image analysis and visualization capabilities for image processing for commercial applications with only limited knowledge from a sensor system. This system can address the large potential U.S. unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) market need of over $100M, according to our estimate based on the published U.S. annual budget for aerial industry. Military applications of the MSHIL will include aerial surveillance and reconnaissance for all U.S. military aircraft (particularly for Navy and Marine helicopters), and numerous monitoring, decision-making, pattern recognition applications for the U.S. government agencies. The MSHIL system can be incorporated by all DoD entities into the multisensor suite and algorithms of situational awareness (SA) systems consisting of an active gated ladar system with the capability to passively track a variety of traffic types at distances sufficient to enable on-aircraft autonomous action to ensure accident prevention, a miniature radar with similar detection and tracking range, a TCAS II cooperative collision avoidance capability, and ADS-B in a future upgrade.