Abstract

We develop a general model of a laser remote-sensing system for search and rescue using targets marked with fluorescent dye. The dye fluoresces at a longer peak wavelength than the incident radiation, enabling a dye-covered target to be distinguished from the unshifted ground echo by the search system. The principal result is a simple expression derived for the average laser power required to search at a particular rate given a required ground energy density. A similar expression is applicable to imaging lidar systems. The example system shown indicates that active probing for lost planes may be practical.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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