• MODELING OF THE PLASMA FORMATION DUE TO LASER IRRADIENCE DURING DIRECTED-ENERGY TESTING

      Rajendran, Saravanakanthan; Keidar, Michael; Boyd, Iain D.; Jones, Charles H.; Mork, Brian; University of Michigan; Edwards Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2007-10)
      Real-time transmission of airborne images to a ground station is highly desirable in many telemetering applications. Such transmission is often through an error prone, time varying wireless channel, possibly under jamming conditions. Hence, a fast, efficient, scalable, and error resilient image compression scheme is vital to realize the full potential of airborne reconnaisance. JPEG2000, the current international standard for image compression, offers most of these features. However, the computational complexity of JPEG2000 limits its use in some applications. Thus, we present a scalable low complexity coder (SLCC) that possesses many desirable features of JPEG2000, yet having high throughput. Continuous radio-wave telemetry is required during planned tests of directed-energy weapons systems in order to characterize in situ the effects of laser irradiation on different target materials. Unfortunately, the incident radiation can cause disruption of the radio signal during the directed-energy testing. Several phenomena associated with directed-energy impact can lead to communication path losses, such as ablation, charged particle emission, charring, and chemical changes in the target materials. Directed-energy impact on the target material leads to target heating and consequent ablation. In this paper, a numerical model has been developed to describe the laser induced ablation of metal surfaces. The model describes the absorption of the laser energy by the metal and the resulting temperature rise in the surface. This temperature rise then induces ablation of the target material. Results for an aluminum target irradiated with a KrF laser were obtained. Temperature profiles in the target material and surface temperature changes are presented along with the ablation rate as a function of time as the aluminum target is irradiated. This report presents results for cases when laser energy absorption by the plasma plume created above the surface is not significant.