Aerodynamically efficient gradient refractive index missile seeker lens
Carr, Herbert M.
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This thesis explores the use of a pointed seeker lens designed using a spherically symmetric gradient refractive index (GRIN) . The design helps to solve the current design conflict between optical quality and aerodynamic drag inherent in hemispherical seeker lenses. Equations for lens design and the evaluation of off-axis lens performance have been developed for both a homogeneous version and a GRIN version of the pointed seeker lens. The homogeneous lens is used as a comparison and a check for the GRIN lens. A FORTRAN program (GISL) has been written and employed to evaluate and compare both the homogeneous lens and many different configurations of possible GRIN lens designs. Results indicate that the GRIN lens has highly superior off-axis imaging performance as compared to the homogeneous lens.
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