Cloud Particle Imager

The CPI records high-resolution (2.3 micron pixel size) digital images of particles that pass through the sample volume at speeds up to 200 m/s. CCD camera flashes up to 75 frames per second (fps), potentially imaging more than 25 particles per frame. Camera upgrades capable of bringing frame rate to nearly 500 fps. Real time image processing crops particle images from the full frame, eliminating blank space and compressing data by >1000:1 CPI is designed for ummanned use, with AI parameters to optimize performance without supervision.

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Cloud Imaging Probe

CIP obtains cloud particle images using a 64-element photodiode array probe to generate 2-Dimensional images of particles from 25-1550 μm, as well as sizing in 1-Dimensional histogram form, and includes housekeeping data.

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2D-S Stereo Probe

The 2D-S Stereo Probe is an optical imaging instrument that obtains stereo cloud particle images and concentrations using linear array shadowing. Two diode laser beams cross at right angles and illuminate two linear 128-photodiode arrays. The lasers are single-mode, temperature-stabilized, fiber-coupled diode lasers operating at 45 mW. The optical paths are arbitrarily labeled the “vertical” and “horizontal” probe channels, but the verticality of each channel actually depends on how the probe is oriented on an aircraft. The imaging optical system is based on a Keplerian telescope design having a (theoretical) primary system magnification of 5X, which results in a theoretical effective size of (42.5 µm + 15 µm)/5 = 11.5 µm. However, actual lenses and arrays have tolerances, so it is preferable to measure the actual effective pixel size by dropping several thousands of glass beads with known diameters through the object plane of the optics system.

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