Auroral imaging from a spinning satellite

Mende, Stephen B.
January 2011
Review of Scientific Instruments;Jan2011, Vol. 82 Issue 1, p013102
Academic Journal
For optimizing in situ particle and field measurements, auroral research satellites are best operated in a spinning mode. Simultaneous imaging of the optical aurora from such satellites requires either a stable platform or the derotation of the camera itself. Either of these requirements is complex and expensive. Either of these solutions also suffers from the problem that image blur often occurs due to the misalignments between the actual and the nominal spin axes of the satellite. Here we propose a novel solution in which the camera(s) are mounted solidly on the spacecraft to observe parallel to the spin axis of the satellite while a despinning flat 45° mirror directs the field of view toward the spacecraft nadir. The resultant image will appear to rotate in the frame of reference of the detector in the camera. In our scheme the images are exposed rapidly and a derotation algorithm is applied to the coordinates of each pixel in real time before the images are co-added in memory. The derotation algorithm uses only look up tables and integer additions and can be executed rapidly in hardware so that the system can support relatively fast satellite spin cycles. The system was simulated including a 1.8° misalignment between the nominal satellite spin axis (parallel to the mirror rotation axis) and the actual spin axis. It was shown that the look up table based algorithm can despin the images and correct for the axes misalignment, allowing the observation of the aurora at full resolution and with continuous coverage.


Related Articles

  • GreenSpring module provides I/O for satcom system.  // Military & Aerospace Electronics;Sep98, Vol. 9 Issue 9, p28 

    Reports that engineers at ARINC in Maryland chose IP-COMM 302 and IP-Serial Industry-Pack mezzanine input-output boards from SBS GreenSpring Modular I/O for GLOBALink/HF satellite communication system. Comments from Keith Cingel, software engineer at ARINC; Uses of the four IndustryPacks;...

  • Product reviews: Hardware. Felix, Kathie; Dunn, Agnes; Ballard, Mike // Multimedia Schools;Jan/Feb2000, Vol. 7 Issue 1, p62 

    Reviews computer hardware products of interest to educators. Cirque Cat line of touchpads for computers; Sony Corp.'s MVC-FD73 Digital Mavica camera.

  • TOP 10 DIGITAL CAMERAS.  // PC World;Apr2003, Vol. 21 Issue 4, p140 

    Compares various digital cameras. Overall ratings; Price range; Performance evaluation; Image quality; Product comments.

  • Dynamics and control of dual-spin gyrostat spacecraft with changing structure. Aslanov, V.; Yudintsev, V. // Celestial Mechanics & Dynamical Astronomy;Jan2013, Vol. 115 Issue 1, p91 

    We study the motion of the free dual-spin gyrostat spacecraft that consists of the platform with a triaxial ellipsoid of inertia and the rotor with a small asymmetry with respect to the axis of rotation. The system with perturbations caused by a small asymmetry of the rotor and the time-varying...

  • MORE REVIEWS. Littman, Dan; Strauch, Joel; Thornton, Carla; Baguley, Richard; Capen, Tracey; Captain, Seán; Cekan, Lisa; Freed, Rebecca; Krasne, Alexandra; Narayanamurthi, Kalpana; Perenson, Melissa J.; Stafford, Alan // PCWorld;Jul2002, Vol. 20 Issue 7, p149 

    Reports evaluation results of several computer printers and monitors, personal digital assistants (PDA), and digital cameras. Recommendation for Brother HL-1440 and Xerox DocuPrint N2125 printers; NEC MultiSync LCD1550X and Sharp LL-T15V1 monitors; Casio Cassiopeia and HandEra 330 PDA; Toshiba...

  • New gadgets are fun, but are they worth it? Goldsborough, Reid // Business Journal (Central New York);3/8/2002, Vol. 19 Issue 10, p22 

    Presents information on several computer devices. Rewritable digital video disc drive; Flat monitors; Digital camera; Digital camcorder.

  • HARDWARE.  // GEOWorld;Feb2006, Vol. 19 Issue 2, p39 

    Presents information on several geographic computer hardware. HP Designjet 4500 printer series from Hewlett-Packard; Jupiter 21 Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver module from Navman; 5800 Limited GPS System from Timble.

  • Globalstar Introduces New Satellite Modem.  // Satellite Today;8/4/2006, Vol. 5 Issue 141, p5 

    The article reports on the modem unveiled by Globalstar Inc. to provide satellite connectivity for laptop computers and other data-only applications. The Skyhawk M1620 modem is designed to adapt to various applications that require basic communication interfaces as well as reduce the time needed...

  • Net gains. Scott, Nick // Director;Oct2014, Vol. 68 Issue 2, p42 

    The article discusses the concept of the Internet of Things (IoT) and its impact on the business sector as of October 2014. Topics covered include the use of miniature hardware in the transfer of data to the web without human intervention, the views of William Higham of strategic consultancy...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics