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Electro-Optical Image Matcher for Space Guidance Applications

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1 Author(s)
Packard, John N. ; Electronic Systems & Products Division. Martin Company, Baltimore, Md.

Pattern recognition and the determination of relative attitude are capabilities of an electro-optical map matching device that utilizes two-dimensional correlation data processing techniques. This device is the basic element of a Universal Space Tracker that provides pitch, yaw and roll data with respect to the recognized field (either planetary surface, star field, or planetary rim) for space vehicle guidance applications. The correlation detector and data quantizer is a digital image camera of special design. A feasibility evaluation model of the map matcher has successfully correlated the constellation Gemini under a Maryland atmosphere. The implementation of optical correlation makes possible a universal tracking system with excellent performance characteristics. An advanced version of the tracker is expected to have a 20-arcsecond accuracy, a 5-degree instantaneous acquisition cone, a 20-degree field of view, a weight of 5 pounds, a ¿-cubic foot volume and a power consumption of 3 watts.

Published in:

Aerospace and Navigational Electronics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:ANE-10 ,  Issue: 3 )