Meteor Detection and UV Spectral Analysis System

Period of Performance: 01/01/2001 - 12/31/2001


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Princeton Scientific Instruments, Inc.
7 Deer Park Drive,, Suite C
Monmouth Junction, NJ 08852
Principal Investigator

Research Institution

Naval Research Laboratory
4555 Overlook Ave., SW
Washington, DC 20375
Institution POC


The elemental composition of meteors is one of the keys to understanding their origin and in turn the evolution of the solar system. Spectroscopic measurement of the emission spectra of meteors as they are heated by entry into the Earth's atmosphere can yield this information. An objective-grating spectrograph instrument payload designed to capture the ultraviolet emission spectra of meteors is proposed. This Shuttle payload will detect and record randomly occurring transient upper atmosphere phenomena such as meteors and upper atmospheric lightning. In this Phase I effort, Princeton Scientific Instruments and the Naval Research Laboratory will address optical, thermal and mechanical design issues related to a Schmidt telescope and high frame rate CCD camera in an earth-viewing Shuttle Hitchhiker payload. It should be noted that high speed, real time, image analysis is of broad interest with applications such as missile guidance and cell morphology in biological image data reduction and image analysis. ~000038 ~