Photonics

High Energy Computed Tomographic Inspection of Munitions

An advance computed tomography (CT) system was recently built for the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ, for the inspection of munitions. The system is a charged coupled device (CCD) camera based CT system designated with the name “experimental Imaging Media” (XIM). The design incorporated shielding for use up to 4MeV x-ray photons and integrated two separate cameras into one single field of view (FOV). Other major distinguishing characteristics include its processing functions to digitally piece the two cameras together, use of advanced artifact reduction principles, performing reconstruction simultaneously during acquisition, and its development in accurate beam hardening corrections through digital means.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Photonics, Charge coupled devices, Imaging, Defense industry, Inspections, Missiles
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Development of Photoacoustic Sensing Platforms

In recent years, photoacoustic spectroscopy (PAS) has emerged as an attractive and powerful technique well suited for sensing applications. The development of high-power radiation sources and more sophisticated electronics, including sensitive microphones and digital lock-in amplifiers, have allowed for significant advances in PAS. Furthermore, photoacoustic (PA) detection of IR absorption spectra using modern tunable lasers offers several advantages, including simultaneous detection and discrimination of numerous molecules of interest. Successful applications of PAS in gases and condensed matter have made this a notable technique and it is now studied and employed by scientists and engineers in a variety of disciplines.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Photonics, Amplifiers, Electronic equipment, Lasers, Sensors and actuators, Spectroscopy, Acoustics
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Mobile High-Energy Laser Shoots Down Drones

A Stryker combat vehicle equipped with a 5kW laser and an array of sensors spent several minutes scanning the horizon for a wayward "enemy" drone. On a television screen in a nearby tent off Thompson Hill - a range used during the recent 10-day Maneuver Fires Integrated Experiment (MFIX) - observers watched the black and white output of those sensors on two flat-screen televisions. A crosshair was centered on the screen. When what appeared to be a drone entered the frame, the crosshairs locked on to it and followed it.

Posted in: News, Defense, Lasers & Laser Systems
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Luminescence Materials as Nanoparticle Thermal Sensors

The purpose of this research program was to create and study novel luminescence particles (phosphors} capable of sensing and retaining the time-temperature information to which they were exposed, therefore acting as nano- and microsized thermosensors. The thermometric property is the latent thermoluminescence (TL) signal associated with electron/hole pairs trapped at defect energy levels, which are differently affected by the environmental temperature.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Data Acquisition, Defense, Nanotechnology, Photonics, Sensors, Architecture, Sensors and actuators, Research and development, Nanomaterials, Thermal testing
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Beam Steering Developer’s Kit

New Scale Technologies Inc. (Victor, NY) has a new beam steering developer’s kit for precise point-to-point beam positioning and dynamic scanning up to 100 Hz. The two piezoelectric rotary stages in the DK-M3-RS-U-2M-20-L developer’s kit have a galvo-scanner form factor but are only 12 mm in diameter. A closed-loop controller embedded in each tiny stage enables direct input of high-level motion commands from a system processor via standard digital (I2C, SPI, UART) or analog servo interface. Each smart stage rotates a pre-mounted aluminum-coated mirror +/- 20 degrees at up to 1100 degrees/second with angular resolution of 0.05 degrees (1 mrad).

Posted in: Products, Lasers & Laser Systems
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Compact UV Lasers Could Spot Dangerous Substances from a Distance

For soldiers in the field, the ability to identify an object or substance based on how it responds to light could mean the difference between life and death. They could, for example, determine from a safe distance if an approaching person or vehicle is carrying an explosive device or dangerous biological agent.

Posted in: News, Defense, Lasers & Laser Systems
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Compact UV Lasers Could ID Substances from a Distance

For soldiers in the field, the ability to identify an object or substance based on how it responds to light could mean the difference between life and death. They could, for example, determine from a safe distance if an approaching person or vehicle is carrying an explosive device or dangerous biological agent.

Posted in: News, Defense, Lasers & Laser Systems
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EOS and MTU Advance Quality Measures for Metal-Based Additive Manufacturing

EOS and MTU Aero Engines have partnered to develop quality-assurance measures for metal engine components using additive manufacturing (AM), signing a framework agreement for the joint strategic development of their technologies.

Posted in: Technology Update, Aeronautics, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Optics, Manufacturing processes, Engine components, Quality assurance
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Selective Laser Sintering System

3D Systems has developed its fastest fab-grade selective laser sintering (SLS) system yet, the ProX 500 Plus. Building upon last year’s ProX 500 release, the ProX 500 Plus continues the company’s efforts to redefine production 3-D printing, adding upgraded speeds, higher print resolution, and an expanded range of engineered composite materials to the line. As with the ProX 500, the ProX 500 Plus delivers injection molding-grade parts without expensive fixed tooling for highly complex and mass customized production. Parts from ProX-series SLS printers exhibit long-lasting, fab-grade durability and functionality as well as smooth surface finish. More detail at http://articles.sae.org/13729.

Posted in: Products, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Lasers & Laser Systems
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Laser Measurement

Ophir Photonics’ 1000WP-BB-34 high-power water cooled thermal sensor is designed with the requirement that all materials coming in contact with the cooling water are either copper or nonmetallic. This eliminates the possibility of contaminating the water or corroding the sensor, improving the accuracy and reliability of the measurements. The sensor features a 34-mm aperture and a wide dynamic range, measuring powers from 5 W to 1000 W and energy from 400 mJ to 300 J. More detail at http://articles.sae.org/13730.

Posted in: Products, Aerospace, Defense, Lasers & Laser Systems, Photonics, Sensors
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