Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Jonathan T. Black, PhD.


This research focuses upon the design, analysis and characterization of several systems related to a spacebased chromotomographic experiment (CTEx), a hyperspectral imager, currently in development at the Air Force Institute of Technology. Three interrelated subject-areas were developed. The initial focal point was a generic, system-level mechanical layout and integration analysis of the space-based instrument. The scope of this work was intended to baseline the space-based system design in order to allow for further trade-space refinement and requirements development. Second, development of an iteration upon the ground-based version of CTEx was accomplished in an effort to support higher-fidelity field data-collection. This effort encompassed both the engineering design process as well as a system-level characterization test series to validate the enhancements to deviation angle, image quality, and alignment characterization methodologies. Finally, the third effort in this thesis related to the design, analysis, and characterization test campaign encompassing the space-based CTEx instrument computer unit (ICU). This activity produced an experimentally validated thermal mathematical model supporting further trade-space refinement and operational planning aspects for this device. Results from all three of the above focus areas support the transition of this next-generation technology from the laboratory to a fullyrealized, space-readied platform achieving intelligence preparation of the battlespace for the warfighter.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number