Xenics, Leuven, Belgium, has introduced the Meerkat series of infrared (IR) cameras that enable the true fusion of images from different spectral ranges. The IR camera configurations cover all the regions of the infrared spectrum: Shortwave Infrared (SWIR), Midwave Infrared (MWIR), Longwave Infrared (LWIR), and Very Longwave Infrared (VLWIR). The cameras are equipped with three cameras for the visual, SWIR, and LWIR spectrum ranges. Software performs the image fusion, taking into account different resolutions of the sensor arrays and different focal lengths of the optics. Therefore, the two selected camera signals are processed in two steps: registration and fusion. Prior to fusion, necessary scaling, X-Y-shift, and rotation must be done, since the detectors are spatially separated. For this purpose, the registration performs feature detection, feature matching, transformation model estimation, image resampling, and the mentioned transformation. The images are then fused using a selected fusing algorithm delivering a picture that is segmented into regions using specific properties such as movement or high temperature.

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This article first appeared in the August, 2011 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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