Proposal Title: Wide Field Imaging Spectrometer Engineering Model
Orbital Sensor Systems Division (Orbital) proposes to perform the final design iteration and subsequently test an engineering model (EM), which will be concurrently manufactured at Orbital's expense, of its Wide Field Imaging Spectrometer (WFIS), currently being breadboarded at Orbital. The patented WFIS optical concept provides for 120 degree limb-to-limb Earth viewing with an instantaneous field-of-view of 1 x 1 km from a nominal 800 km orbit, without moving parts. This innovative, compact hyperspectral imaging spectrometer, not available anywhere in the world, promises to reduce instrument size, weight and power manyfold over existing similar EOS instruments, while increasing or maintaining performance. The continuous representation of the spectrometer's wavelengths allows for selective composition and aggregation of spectral bands, arbitrarily selectable by ground command. This is a tremendous advance over fixed-filter radiometers and holds the promise f! ! or making significant new science possible with next-generation EOS instruments.
Using its own IR&D funds, Orbital has performed extensive ray tracing and optical optimization work on the WFIS concept, including polarization (<5%) and stray light analysis. orbital is currently building a breadboard version of the wfis to test optical parameters. all design and test data will be available for the proposed wfis em.>
The proposed visible range WFIS Engineering Model (WFIS EM) will be designed to meet requirements for a typical earth observation mission. The design will employ the final opto-mechanical configuration with a commercially available CCD detector. The EM will be tested to establish optical performance parameters, as well as polarization and stray light performance. In Year 2, Orbital proposes to adapt the EM for aircraft use and obtain flight data. It will be the model for spectrometer designs for the near-, mid- and thermal-infrared ranges.