Abstract

We investigated the influence of altitude on aero-optic imaging quality degradation of the hemispherical optical dome. Boundary conditions for the aerodynamic heating effect of the optical dome were calculated by solving the Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes equations provided by FLUENT. The finite element model and the thermal-structure simulation results of the optical dome were obtained using ANSYS. The 3D nonuniform refractive index field of the optical dome was obtained according to the thermal-optical effect. The optical tracking method based on the fourth-order Runge–Kutta algorithm was adopted to simulate the optical transmission through the optical dome. The Strehl ratio (SR), encircled energy, distorted target images, and peak signal-to-noise ratio were presented for imaging quality evaluation. The variation rules of these imaging quality evaluation parameters were obtained in the altitude range of 0–45 km. The results showed that, in the same flight conditions, with the increase of altitude, peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR) of the distorted image, and SR result were increased, and radiuses of dispersion spots, including 80% energy, were decreased; therefore, the influence of aero-optics effect on imaging quality degradation was gradually weakened.

© 2019 Optical Society of America

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