Stacey Sueoka grew up in Koloa on the island of Kaua‘i. She graduated from Kaua‘i High School in 2003 and is currently attending Pacific University to receive her B.S. degree in Physics with minors in Mathematics and Japanese in May 2007. She spent the last two summers interning in Washington D.C. at the Naval Research Lab and hopes to someday return to Hawaii to work in the technology field. She enjoys going to the beach, fishing, and spending time with friends and family.
Home Island: Kauai
High School: Kauai High School
Institution when accepted: Pacific University
Akamai Project: Radiometric Calibration for the MAIA Laser Receiver
Project Site: Textron
Mentor: Robert Nolan
Laser ranging and radiometric measurements play a vital role in military operations because of their ability to determine an object’s distance and optical characteristics. The MAIA laser and receiver system supports missions for the Air Force at the Maui Space Surveillance Site (MSSS) on the summit of Haleakala. A 1064nm wavelength beam is fired by the laser at a very high repetition rate from the Beam Director/Tracker (BDT) telescope. The beam bounces off the targeted satellite and reflects back to MSSS. The Advanced Electro-Optical System (AEOS) telescope collects the light and guides it through a set of optics to the laser receiver. The laser receiver contains two detectors that measure light differently: the Intensified Photo-Diode (IPD) and the reference detector. Our goal is to calibrate the MAIA laser receiver using two methods. The first was performed in the optics lab at the Maui Research and Technology Park in Kihei, where a basic monochromatic responsivity was derived from the ratio of IPD signal to reference detector flux. This enabled the receiver to not only provide ranging but also to take radiometric measurements. Once incorporated into AEOS, a system absolute calibration will be performed using stars. There is some difficulty in this because the wavelength of the laser does not fall within a standard astronomical spectral band. I assisted in the development of a procedure for transferring exo-atmospheric spectral irradiance (W/cm2-?m) for standard calibration stars in standard astronomical bands to exo-atmospheric irradiance (W/cm2) within the 1064nm laser line filter using a technique described in a paper by Northrop Grumman Space Technologies.