Characterizing the performance impacts of target surface on underwater pulse laser ranging system

Qi Chen, Jian Wei Yam, Sing Yee Chua, Ningqun Guo, Xin Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Laser-based object detection has been recognized as the most reliable technique for applications such as night vision, 3D (3-Dimensional) imaging, and especially underwater object detection. The key information is extracted from the reflected laser pulse after interacting with the target which surface directly affects the system performance. Due to the variety of the target types, it is necessary to investigate the surface characteristics and their effects on the performance of an underwater pulse laser ranging system. In this paper, the influence of target surface characteristics namely the type of materials, colors, and roughness on the reflectance and system performance are investigated through theoretical analysis using the Bidirectional Reflection Distribution Function (BRDF) and Laser Detection and Ranging (LADAR) model. An underwater peak detection pulse laser ranging system is developed to validate the results of a theoretical study. Both experimental and theoretical results clearly show that the system performance depends on the reflectance caused by the three characteristics of the target surface. This comprehensive research provides a handy reference with regards to the surface material, colors, and roughness for future improvement or correction in this domain.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107267
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Quantitative Spectroscopy and Radiative Transfer
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • BRDF
  • Laser sensing
  • Reflection

Cite this