Dual-beam potassium
Voigt filter for atomic
line imaging

Abstract: Spectrally narrowband imaging in remote sensing applications can be advantageous for detecting atomic emission features. This is especially useful in detecting specific constituents within rocket plumes, which are challenging to discern from naturally occurring sunglints. In this paper, we demonstrate a dual-beam technique, implemented with a Wollaston prism, for calibrating a Voigt magneto-optical filter for a linear polarizer’s finite extinction ratio, as well as optical misalignment between the linear polarizers’ transmission axes. Such a strategy would be key towards expanding the filter’s field of view while maintaining its classification capabilities. Validation of the potassium Voigt filter is demonstrated using the simulation tool ElecSus in combination with a potassium hollow cathode lamp. RMS error between the filter’s temperature response and that of the simulation was approximately 2%. We then demonstrate the detection of a potassium model rocket motor outdoors alongside a sunglint. Results indicate a 20-fold increase in contrast when using our dual-beam calibration strategy.

M. W. Kudenov, B. Pantalone, and R. Yang, “Dual-beam potassium Voigt filter for atomic line imaging,” Appl. Opt., AO 59(17), 5282–5289 (2020).