Laser Ranging Simulation Program (LRSP) is a computer program that predicts selected aspects of the performances of a laser altimeter or other laser ranging or remote-sensing systems and is especially applicable to a laser-based system used to map terrain from a distance of several kilometers. Designed to run in a more recent version (5 or higher) of the MATLAB programming language, LRSP exploits the numerical and graphical capabilities of MATLAB. LRSP generates a graphical user interface that includes a pop-up menu that prompts the user for the input of data that determine the performance of a laser ranging system. Examples of input data include duration and energy of the laser pulse, the laser wavelength, the width of the laser beam, and several parameters that characterize the transmitting and receiving optics, the receiving electronic circuitry, and the optical properties of the atmosphere and the terrain. When the input data have been entered, LRSP computes the signal-to-noise ratio as a function of range, signal and noise currents, and ranging and pointing errors.

This program was written by Sabino Piazzolla of USC and Hamid Hemmati and David Tratt of Caltech for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Don Hart of the California Institute of Technology at (818) 393-3425. Refer to NPO-30549.

This Brief includes a Technical Support Package (TSP).
Laser Ranging Simulation Program

(reference NPO30549) is currently available for download from the TSP library.

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This article first appeared in the January, 2003 issue of Photonics Tech Briefs Magazine.

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