Title:
METHOD FOR DISRUPTION OF THERMAL VISION USING RADIATION DIFFUSION
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention uses multiple laser diodes with different physical properties in conjunction with a holographic diffuser and lens assembly to generate and effectively disperse the radiation (infrared light) in a spectrum and pattern that is interpreted as heat by certain vision systems to effectively interfere with the electronic processing capability of the vision systems.



Inventors:
Redmer, Ronald David (Lake Orion, MI, US)
Application Number:
11/530866
Publication Date:
01/11/2007
Filing Date:
09/11/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
348/E5.09
International Classes:
G01J5/02
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
TANINGCO, MARCUS H
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DORT PATENT, P.C. (Alexandria, VA, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A method for interference with the electronic processing capability of vision systems comprising: generating pulsed radiation from at least one diode, said radiation being from 700 nm to 1000 nm; collecting said radiation from said at least one diode in at least one lens; directing said radiation to a diffusion system, said diffusion system being adapted to perform a non-linear operation on said radiation, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation in a divergent pattern; diffusing said radiation into viewing target areas to create at least one radiation field that covers the viewing target for said vision system, thereby interfering with the electronic capability of vision systems.

2. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation at a controlled time.

3. The method as recited in claim 2, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation at a controlled pulse rate.

4. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation at a controlled time and a controlled pulse rate.

5. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation in an encoded and encrypted manner.

6. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein said diffusion system is a holographic diffusion film.

7. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein diffusing the radiation comprises diffusing the radiation comprises using at least one liquid crystal display chips to generate holographic diffusion.

8. The method as recited in claim 7, wherein diffusing the radiation comprises diffusing the radiation comprises using at least one liquid crystal display chip with multiple functional capabilities for generating holographic diffusion.

9. The method as recited in claim 1, wherein said diffusion system includes multiple Fourier transforms.

10. The method as recited in claim 9, wherein said multiple Fourier transforms are created by diffusion films with different Fourier transform properties.

11. A method for interference with the electronic processing capability of vision systems comprising: generating a first pulsed radiation from a first diode at a first time, said radiation being from 700 nm to 1000 nm; collecting said radiation from said first diode in at least one lens; directing said radiation to a diffusion system, said diffusion system being adapted to perform a non-linear operation on said radiation, wherein said diode emits pulsed radiation in a divergent pattern; diffusing said radiation into viewing target areas to create at least one radiation field that covers the viewing target for said vision system, generating a second pulsed radiation from a second diode at a second time, said radiation from said second diode being from 700 nm to 1000 nm, and a different wavelength from the radiation from said first diode; wherein said second pulse is in between said first pulse; collecting said radiation from said second diode in at least one lens; directing said radiation from said second diode to said diffusion system; diffusing said radiation from a second diode into viewing target areas; thereby interfering with the electronic capability of vision systems.

12. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein said first diode emits pulsed radiation in an encoded and encrypted manner.

13. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein said diffusion system is a holographic diffusion film.

14. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein said radiation from said first and second diodes is diffused during an overlapping period.

15. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein said radiation from said first and second period is not diffused at the same time.

16. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein said radiation from first diode is emitted in a divergent pattern.

17. The method as recited in claim 11, wherein diffusing the radiation comprises diffusing the radiation comprises using at least one liquid crystal display chips to generate holographic diffusion.

18. The method as recited in claim 17, wherein diffusing the radiation comprises diffusing the radiation comprises using at least one liquid crystal display chip with multiple functional capabilities for generating holographic diffusion.

19. A method for interfering with the electronic processing capability of a thermal or night vision system, comprising: generating radiation from a first multiple laser diode; collecting said radiation from a first multiple laser diode in a lens; directing said radiation to a diffusion system, said diffusion system adapted to perform a non-linear operation on said radiation; performing a non-linear operation on said directed radiation to create a diffused radiation field that covers a viewing target for said vision system; diffusing the radiation from said first multiple laser diode into at least on viewing target area to create a first radiation field that covers the viewing target for said vision system; and generating radiation from a second multiple laser diode, wherein said first and second multiple laser diodes generate radiation with different properties; diffusing the radiation from said second multiple laser diode into said first radiation field create a second radiation field that masks at least on property of said first radiation field.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This Application is a continuation of and claims priority under 35 USC §120 to co-pending U.S. application Ser. No. 10/904,701 entitled METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR THE DISRPUTION OF THERMAL VISION DEVICES filed Nov. 23, 2004, which claims priority under 35 USC §119(e) to U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/522,406, filed Sep. 26, 2004, both of which are incorporated in their entirety for all purposes.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

Not applicable.

BACKGROUND

A thermal vision system (not shown) generally consists of a camera that senses heat from the environment and processes the signals electronically. The electronic signals are then transformed into a virtual image that is projected onto a display for viewing. These systems are designed to detect differential temperature to generate image resolution and therefore are limited in their ability to instantaneously process and respond to large increases or decreases in ambient light whether or not it is in the visible spectrum.

U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,700,078, 5,771,326, 5,791,757, 5,796,904, 5,857,770, 5,890,796, 5,971,578, 6,036,340, 6,422,713, and 6,429,429, which are all currently owned by Ford Global Technologies of Dearborn, Mich., teach laser illumination systems which are generally for automotive use. These patents are incorporated by reference for all purposes.

SUMMARY

The present invention relates generally to methods and systems for jamming thermal and other types of vision systems using laser diode technology in conjunction with a diffuser and lens assembly. The present invention generates and effectively disperses the light in a spectrum that is interpreted as heat by thermal vision systems, which causes more extensive electronic processing and an instantaneous jamming response.

In a first aspect of the invention, a method for interference with the electronic processing capability of vision systems is provided that includes generating radiation from at least one diode, collecting the radiation from the diode in at least one lens, directing the radiation to a diffusion system that is adapted to perform a non-linear operation on said radiation, diffusing the radiation into viewing target areas to create at least one radiation field that covers the viewing target for the vision system, thereby interfering with the electronic capability of vision systems.

In a second aspect of the invention, a method for interference with the electronic processing capabilities of a vision system is provided that includes generating radiation from the first multiple laser diode, collecting the radiation from a first multiple laser diode in a lens, directing the radiation to a diffusion system that is adapted to perform a non-linear operation on radiation, performing a non-linear operation on the radiation to create a diffused radiation field that covers a viewing target for the vision system, diffusing the radiation into at least on viewing target area to create a radiation field that covers the viewing target for the vision system and generating radiation from a second multiple laser diode, wherein the first and second multiple laser diodes generate radiation with different properties.

In a third aspect of the invention, a method for interference with the electronic processing capabilities of a vision system is provided that includes generating radiation from at least one laser diode, collecting the radiation from the at least one laser diode, directing the radiation to a diffusion system that is capable of performing a non-linear operation on the radiation and diffusing the radiation into at least one viewing target area to create at least one radiation field that covers a viewing target for the vision system, wherein the diffusion system comprises at least one layer of holographic diffusion film.

In a fourth aspect of the invention, a method for interfering with the electronic processing capabilities of a vision system is provided that includes creating a first infrared light pulse of a first time period, diffusing the first infrared pulse through a first Fourier transform at a target to block viewing of the target with the thermal vision system, creating a second infrared light pulse of a second time period, the second time period being a time period that is longer than the first time period, diffusing the second infrared light pulse through a Fourier transform at the target to block viewing of the target with the thermal vision system, generating a third infrared pulse of a third time period, the third time period being a time period that is longer than the first time period and longer than the second time period, and diffusing the third infrared pulse through a Fourier transform to interfere with the electronic processing capabilities of a vision system.

In a fifth aspect of the invention, a vision jamming system is provided that includes a diffusion system, at least one laser diode in operational communication with the diffusion system, the at least one laser diode being adapted to generate radiation in a spectrum between 700 and 1000 nanometers and at least one lens adapted to collect the generated radiation and direct it to the diffusion system, which is in operable communication therewith.

In a sixth aspect of the invention, a vision jamming system is provided that includes a polycarbonate holographic diffusion system, at least one pulsed laser diode in operational communication with the diffusion system, the at least one laser diode being adapted to generate radiation in a spectrum between 700 and 1000 nanometers and at least one lens adapted to collect the generated radiation and direct it to the diffusion system, which is in operable communication therewith.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1A is a sample laser-diode interference device in a first embodiment from a top cutaway view;

FIG. 1B is another view of the first embodiment from a front/side view;

FIG. 2A illustrates the functional operation of a first embodiment of the thermal vision interference system;

FIG. 2B illustrates the functional operation from a front view;

FIG. 3A shows the use of the invention to create thermal vision interference;

FIG. 3B illustrates a sample interference (infrared light as particles or rays for illustrative purposes) pattern;

FIG. 4A illustrates using a variable pulse;

FIG. 4B illustrates using a variable gap or frequency (independent of pulse length);

FIG. 4C illustrates using a combination of FIGS. 4A and 4B;

FIG. 5A shows a multiple degree embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5B illustrates the multiple degree embodiment from another view;

FIG. 5C illustrates a sample interior configuration a multiple degree embodiment;

FIG. 6 shows multiple holographic diffusion embodiments;

FIG. 7 shows multiple uses of laser frequencies through tunable lasers or multiple diodes.

DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1A shows a first embodiment of the vision jamming system 100 of the invention. The system 100 comprises at least one laser diode, a holographic diffuser and a lens assembly, which are all in operable communication with each other. As used herein, “operable communication” means a proximity sufficient to allow the components of the invention to effectively operate within system 100. The components of system 100 need not be in direct physical contact with each other to interfere with the electronic processing of vision systems. During use, the system 100 effectively generates and disperses light in a spectrum that is interpreted as heat by thermal vision systems by pulsing a laser diode LD through a holographic diffuser HDF and specialized lens CL to generate an intermittent curtain of high-intensity non-visible light. The light that effectively overloads the electronic processing capability of various vision systems, including but not limited to thermal visions systems.

As shown in FIG. 3B, the present jamming system 100 generates light in a spectrum that is between 700 nm and 1000 nm (infrared). Light within this spectrum is interpreted as heat by thermal vision systems, which causes more extensive electronic processing and a fast jamming response. The system 100 can electronically control the pulse characteristics in an encoded and encrypted manner to prevent next-generation thermal vision systems TVS from countering the technology unless operated with controlled decryption technology. As used herein, the terms “light” and “radiation” are used interchangeable. FIG. 1B shows the first embodiment from a front view.

Generally system 100 effectively interferes with the electronic processing capability of vision systems by generating radiation from at least one diode, collecting the radiation from the diode in at least one lens, directing the radiation to a diffusion system that is adapted to perform a non-linear operation the radiation and diffusing the radiation into target viewing areas to create at least one radiation filed that covers the viewing target for the vision systems.

FIGS. 2A and 2B illustrate the functional relationship of the components of system 100 in one specific embodiment. The laser diode LD generates radiation, generally between 700 nanometers (“nm”) and 1000 nm, either in a convergent or divergent pattern. The “light” enters a lens CL, which collects the incident light and propagates it directly, or via an optional mirror, to a diffusion system, which in one embodiment is a polycarbonate holographic diffusion film HDF. The polycarbonate holographic diffusion film is commercially available from Physical Optics Corporation of California. The HDF is generally molded into the front piece (not shown) of the interference system 100, but need not be. The light energy or radiation is then diffused into the target areas based on the holographic pattern to create interference with the vision system (not shown). In specific embodiments of the invention, a pulse control PS is integrated directly into the laser diode LD, or alternately is contained on an ASIC or integrated with a power source PS. FIG. 2B illustrates a front view of FIG. 2A.

In another specific embodiment of the invention, the vision jamming system 100 comprises a polycarbonate holographic diffusion system, at least one pulsed laser diode in operable communication with the diffusion system, the laser diode being adapted to generate radiation in a spectrum between 700 and 1000 nm, and at least one lens that is adapted to collect the generated radiation and direct it to the diffusion system, which is in operable communication therewith.

FIG. 3A illustrates one embodiment of the invention where the holographic diffusion film HDF acts as a Fourier transform F on the emitted radiation to create the interfering radiation field E. As can be appreciated by those of skill in the art, there may be different types of Fourier transforms that would be appropriate for use in the system 100 of the invention, depending on the intended end use. For example, a user may wish to create thermal vision system (“TVS”) interference in a narrow swath instead of wide dispersement. Using multiple types Fourier transforms is discussed below.

As shown in FIG. 3B, the present thermal vision jamming system 100 generates light in a spectrum that is between 700 nm and 1000 nm (infrared). Light within this spectrum is interpreted as heat by thermal vision systems, which causes more extensive electronic processing and a fast jamming response. The system 100 can electronically control the pulse characteristics in an encoded and encrypted manner to prevent next-generation thermal vision systems TVS from countering the technology unless operated with controlled decryption technology.

FIGS. 4A-C illustrate one embodiment of the invention wherein a time-based encryption algorithm is utilized in the system 100 to prevent next-generation TVS from unauthorized decryption through use of heuristic technology. In a specific embodiment of the invention, a first infrared light pulse of a first time period is created; the first infrared pulse is then diffused through a first Fourier transform at a target to block viewing of the target with the thermal vision system. A second infrared light pulse of a second time period is then generated. The second infrared light pulse is then diffused through a Fourier transform at the target to block viewing of the target with the thermal vision system. A third infrared pulse of a third time period is then generated. The third infrared pulse of the third time period is then diffused through a Fourier transform at the target. It should be understood that the first time period is shorter in length than the second time period. The second time period is shorter in length than the third time period. And, the third time period is longer in length than the first and second time periods. The first, second and third time periods are all different.

FIG. 4A illustrates one embodiment of the invention, wherein the laser pulse is controlled so that each pulse or series of pulses is variable. FIG. 4B shows the process of controlling the time in between the laser pulses or the pulse rate so that a thermal vision system cannot anticipate or filter the interference. FIG. 4C shows the process of using a combination of the pulse rate and pulse length to prevent “encrypting” of the interference patterns.

FIGS. 5A-5C illustrate alternate embodiments of the system 100′ in which thermal vision is disrupted in multiple degrees (or all six degrees if desired). FIGS. 5A and 5B show an alternate embodiment with 360 degrees of interference capability in the xy plane with 4 sides of holographic diffusion file HDF, which may include the top as well (covering 120-180 degrees in the positive z direction) depending on the positioning. FIG. 5C illustrates how multiple laser diodes (LD1, LD2, LD3) and collection lenses (CL1, CL2, CL3) may be positioned. The variations on placement of internal components for the alternate embodiment will depend on the manufacturing and assembly requirements as well as the intended end use (e. g. portable, stationary, vehicle mounted, etc.).

In another alternative embodiment of the invention, system 100 comprises at least one liquid crystal display (“LCD”) chip, or chips with multiple functional capabilities for generating high-performance, electronically controllable holographic diffusion. This feature involves dynamically changing the light direction and diffusion characteristics to prevent next generation thermal vision systems from countering this technology based on location and thermal pattern recognition techniques, which is shown in FIG. 6.

In further alternative embodiments, system 100 comprises laser diodes of different types to prevent the thermal vision systems from countering the technology. The laser diodes are alternately implemented to prevent effectively filtering a single type of radiation (infrared) interference, as shown in FIG. 7.

In view of the above, it will be seen that all the objects and features of the present invention are achieved, and other advantageous results obtained. The description of the invention contained herein is illustrated only, and is not intended in a limiting sense.