There is an ever-increasing need for smaller, lighter, and more powerful imagers — thermal imagers in particular — as the remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) business (also known as unmanned airborne vehicles — UAVs — or drones) grows. For most military applications and many commercial applications, thermal imaging is the primary imaging mode from these airborne vehicles. In many performance cases, the thermal imager is the most valuable, largest, and heaviest payload on the vehicle, and thus has the greatest need for optimization for flight applications.

This webinar will address many of the applications and challenges of developing thermal imaging camera engines designed for airborne imaging, with an emphasis on low SWaP (size, weight, and power) for unmanned aircraft. Presenter Chris Johnston, founder and president of Sierra-Olympia Technologies, will discuss basic considerations of airborne imaging metrics, and challenges in the areas of sensors, optics, power, and downlinks. Johnston will also offer a variety of payload examples and will update participants on the current state-of-the-near-term shelf of components and the challenges developers face in this ever-restrictive weight-volume-power-cost space.

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