Model of lidar range-Doppler signatures of solid rocket fuel plumes

Isaac N. Bankman, John W. Giles, Stephen C. Chan, Robert A. Reed

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The analysis of particles produced by solid rocket motor fuels relates to two types of studies: the effect of these particles on the Earth's ozone layer, and the dynamic flight behavior of solid fuel boosters used by the NASA Space Shuttle. Since laser backscatter depends on the particle size and concentration, a lidar system can be used to analyze the particle distributions inside a solid rocket plume in flight. We present an analytical model that simulates the lidar returns from solid rocket plumes including effects of beam profile, spot size, polarization and sensing geometry. The backscatter and extinction coefficients of alumina particles are computed with the T-matrix method that can address non-spherical particles. The outputs of the model include time-resolved return pulses and range-Doppler signatures. Presented examples illustrate the effects of sensing geometry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)208-217
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventLaser Radar Technology and Applications IX - Orlando, FL, United States
Duration: Apr 13 2004Apr 15 2004


  • Alumina
  • Backscatter
  • Lidar
  • Model
  • Plume particles
  • Range-Doppler
  • Solid rocket motor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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