Features

Optical Coatings

L-3 Applied Optics Center (Dallas, TX), part of L-3 Communications, Warrior Systems, recently coated thirteen large optical elements for a major national telescope. The largest of the elements was over 27 inches in diameter and weighed over 300 pounds. The anti-reflective and highly reflective thin film optical coatings deposited by AOC on the various elements were specifically designed by Applied Optics Center to enhance the overall performance of the telescope, and to ensure its long-term mission success.

Posted in: Products, Photonics

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White Light Measurement Solution

Hexagon Metrology (North Kingston, RI) has released WLS qFLASH, a compact white light solution (WLS), a non-contact, stereo vision system used to quickly capture 3D measurements on the shop floor. The portable solution creates reports and digitizes acquired data on the spot for analysis or direct CAD comparison.

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Hyperspectral Imaging What is it? How does it work?

Hyperspectral imaging has grown increasingly popular over the past ten years in military, industrial, and scientific arenas. The ability to precisely characterize the color of a viewed item, whether a camouflaged vehicle, a bruise on an arm or on fruit, or a wide swath of vegetation, allows the user to make informed decisions only dreamed of in the past. What once required large, delicate, and expensive laboratory spectrometers is now being done in real time aboard satellites, unmanned aerial vehicles, and portable handheld units.

Posted in: Photonics, Application Briefs

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Video Routing System Upgrades Mission Control Center

PESA has announced the completion of a video routing system upgrade to NASA’s Mission Control Center (MCC) at the agency’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston. Lockheed Martin, a prime contractor for NASA, commissioned PESA to provide hardware and system training for its Cheetah Video Distribution System (VDS).

Posted in: Application Briefs

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Product of the Month: The APN Series Power Monitoring Sensor

NK Technologies, San Jose, CA, has introduced the APN Series power monitoring sensor that measures three phases of current and voltage, and computes 14 values necessary to track power usage in the RS-485 Modbus RTU format. The monitor uses current transformers to measure the amperes. The line voltage connects directly to the transducer, up to 600 VAC. The unit’s RS-485 Modbus RTU format is compatible with many programmable logic controllers, and fits into industrial communications networks, both hard-wired and wireless, depending on the application. It can be configured to accept standard 5-amp current transformer inputs or sensors producing 333 mVAC proportional to the AC current of the circuit. The primary circuit voltage is connected directly to the monitor for 600 VAC or lower, or through a potential transformer for monitoring circuits of higher potentials. The APN is powered from an external supply, and provides a pulse contact to open and close as Watt hours are accumulated.

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Collaborative Platforms Aid Emergency Decision-Making

Real-time data from NASA satellites enables public agencies to better prepare for natural and manmade disasters. NASA runs and partners in many missions dedicated to monitoring the Earth, and the tools used in these missions continuously return data on everything from shifts in temperature, to cloud formation, to pollution levels over highways. The data are of great scientific value, but they also provide information that can play a critical role in decision-making during times of crisis. Real-time developments in weather, wind, ocean currents, and numerous other conditions can have a significant impact on the way disasters unfold.

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Multispectral Sensors

PIXELTEQ (Largo, FL) has introduced its new PixelSensor™ multispectral sensors. PixelSensor multispectral sensors use on-chip filtering to pack eight wavelength-selective photodiodes onto an array measuring less than 1cm, enabling simpler and smaller OEM optical devices. PixelCam™ and SpectraCam™ spectral cameras image spectral bands in UV, Visible, and NIR – SWIR for a variety of applications.

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