Acousto-Optic Tunable Filter-Based Polarimetric Spectral Sensor With Progressive Algorithm For Material Analysis and Mapping, Phase Idata.nasa.gov | Last Updated 19 Jul 2018
The prevalence of off earth landing missions both proposed and undertaken has been steadily increasing. With the proposal of missions, not only to Mars, but also to comets, asteroids and outer planet moons, the ruggedness and robustness of equipment must meet the challenges of ever harsher environments. As a part of these missions, researchers wish to analyze the materials which make up the surface of these bodies and search for organic material. Brimrose proposes to develop a novel, compact, fast spectropolarimeter that will be capable of operating in the short wave infrared. The analysis of polarized light can help discriminate and classify materials and identify objects of. Measurement of polarization state can also provide various characteristics such as surface properties, shape, shading, and roughness, and can be used to identify unique features that will allow more accurate discrimination between various materials than spectral data alone. Development of space-ready hardware and algorithms for the detection and analysis of polarized light in space based analysis applications is needed to enable high confidence material discrimination. The development of proposed full-scope spectropolarimeter will offer a dramatically improved optical solution for material analysis by performing fast spectral profile acquisition with an additional feature of complete polarization information.