This is a four-hour introductory course on the salient features of pointing a laser on target. The course is taught from a Control Engineer's perspective, but it is presented at a level such that one with an engineering degree will easily understand the concepts and basic tools applied. The uninitiated in directed energy will find this an excellent foundational course for entry studies into laser weapon systems. Topics included are error budgets, beam control hardware (gimbals, inertial reference units), stabilization, control laws, tracking algorithms, adaptive optics, pointing, and the performance models to estimate error budget compliance. Derivations of performance equations are minimal and completely contained for further study. Each section is well referenced for further self-study.
The course outline is as follows:
The target audience consists of those individuals who are working in an associated discipline and wish to learn the lexicon, hardware, algorithms, and basic approach to getting the energy on target.
Salvatore J. Cusumano, Director, Center for Directed Energy, B.S. United States Air Force Academy, 1971; M.S. Air Force Institute of Technology, 1977; Ph.D. University of Illinois, 1988. Dr. Cusumano recently joined the AFIT faculty after 7 years at Airborne Laser System Program Office. His interests stem from the 20 years of research at the Air Force Research Laboratory within the areas of HEL Stabilization and Control, Phased Arrays, Adaptive Optics, and Active Tracking and Pointing.
Glen P. Perram, Professor of Physics, B.S. Cornell University, 1980; M.S. Air Force Institute of Technology, 1981, Ph.D. Air Force Institute of Technology, 1986. Professor Perram's research interests include chemical lasers, laser weapon modeling and simulation, remote sensing, and chemical physics. He has served on the AFIT faculty since 1989 and is the author of over 30 archival journal articles and 80 presentations.