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Emerging Products

Hydra Multispectral Polarization Sensor

Multispectral and Polarization Sensors

The targets are undetectable without Polarization!

Quad-Chart-Hydra EOIR MultiPol N68335-20-C-0133

For the Navy: Current Electro-Optical systems have been designed for ground -based operations, and do not consider the effect of high reflection from ship wakes. The Navy needs an improved Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) imaging system for detection, recognition, and identification of small, fast, agile boats. Specifications required for taking the fight off the Navy asset include:  Fixed- and rotary-wing compatible, Visible to Mid or Long Wave Infra Red (LWIR), 360 degrees azimuth, multiple fields of view, image acquisition at range, able to be ruggedized to withstand airborne use. The sensor emerging from our laboratory under a Small Business Innovative Research Program with NAVAIR developed the Multi-Spectral Imaging Polarimetric system (MSIP) named Hydra. Hydra is a three-camera system covering the Visible, Short Wave InfraRed, Mid Wave InfraRed, sensor bands. Polarization sensing and zoom capability was added to two of these wavebands for enhanced performance Day and Night at long range. The sensor is the optimal combination of spectral and polarization multi-mode sensing for the highest probability of detection. The Hydra system penetrates the spray.

The Hydra imaging system is capable of detecting, recognizing, identifying, and tracking fast-moving boats while either partially or completely obscured by highly reflective water wakes. Hydra is a novel sensor that enables early discrimination and track in time to meet the threat by adding polarization detection mode to standard Infrared intensity detection methods. Unresolved targets are acquired at long range in mist, spray and glint cluttered backgrounds.

Finding objects of interest in a complex, cluttered scene can be challenging when limited to a single waveband. Multispectral Polarimetric Imagers enhance system performance by providing polarization enhanced imagery in multiple wavelengths. The additional sensing modes offered by these multispectral systems provide useful imagery in situations where standard single band imagers fail. Multispectral Polarimetric Imagers provide advantages over current thermal imagers in detection/visualization, camouflage detection, image clutter rejection, and imaging in low thermal contrast conditions.


Consider these other these multispectral and polarimetric sensors.











and Corvus VIS/NIR



SWIR Imaging Polarimeter for Tracking

SWIR Polarization Sensors for Tracking

The Navy needs a compact, rugged camera that has an “on the move” polarimetric imaging capability in the short-wave infrared (SWIR) spectrum. Conventional SWIR polarimetric sensors are designed for stationary operation and often have variable image registration issues that lead to changing polarization artifacts if used on a moving platform. Pyxis SWIR is a snapshot polarimeter where all data needed to compute a complete linear polarization image set is gathered in one frame. This system has a sufficiently high frame rate to enable track and handoff. The sensor has state-of-the-art features, including its focal plane array, noise reduction technology and dynamic range.  Polaris’ Pyxis SWIR sensor offers superior acquisition, tracking and classification of objects that are traditionally difficult to detect. Pyxis is a 1920 x 1200 pixel pitch matched infrared polarimeter with a 10 micron pixel pitch and a high dynamic range for both day and night operation. Pyxis incorporates a powerful feature called polarization sensing and provides a high- quality SWIR image and 4 additional polarization data products in a single frame. Pyxis includes field programmable gate array (FPGA) processing electronics to compute all data products at video rates. Because Pyxis is a snapshot polarization imager, it mitigates the motion artifacts that can be present in conventional SWIR sensors. The Pyxis SWIR outperforms conventional SWIR cameras by providing an “on the move” polarimetric sensing capability. Pyxis offers the warfighter greater operational flexibility for increased situation awareness and safety. Its extremely high dynamic range allows Pyxis to image very dim objects adjacent to very bright objects in the same scene. Its low SWAP (less than 4 cubic inches in volume; weight less than one pound) simplifies its integration into ground, air and sea platforms. This sensor has bee flown on a  a drone for route clearance.

SWIR imaging polarimetry has demonstrated significant improvement over conventional imaging for many different mission areas including target detection, discrimination, and tracking in both land and maritime environments.  SWIR band polarimetry has been recently applied to these applications as well as discrimination between materials for Identification of Friend or Foe (IFF).


Data Sheet Pyxis SWIR Imagers



Applications: We have solutions.

Our novel sensors clearly reveal what is impossible to see with commercial off the shelf systems.

Polaris has dedicated years of development to polarization-based imaging systems for military and scientific entities. Commercial systems derived from these efforts provide daylight detail in the dark and visibility in low contrast conditions with real-time image processing.

Combined with our eTherm® vision enhancement software, Polaris sensors capture, measure, display, and enhance images which can be colorized to display critical data.

From concept to prototype to product, Polaris offers custom sensor solutions in any of the Visible, Near, Short, Mid, and Long Wave InfraRed spectral bands.

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Our team engineers solutions for using emerging technology. We apply electro-optical science to serve our customer’s needs. We offer our subject matter expertise. Our experience in novel optic, aero optic, aero thermal, seeker design and simulation is offered to you.


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