Laser vibration sensing at Fraunhofer IOSB: Review and applications
Laser vibrometry based on coherent detection allows noncontact measurements of small-amplitude vibration characteristics of objects. This technique, commonly using the Doppler effect, offers high potential for short-range civil applications and for medium- or long-range applications in defense and security. Most commercially available laser Doppler vibrometers are for short ranges (up to a few tens of meters) and use a single beam from a low-power HeNe laser source (l=633  nm). Medium- or long-range applications need higher laser output power, and thus, appropriate vibrometers typically operate at 1.5, 2, or 10.6  mm to meet the laser safety regulations. Spatially resolved vibrational information can be obtained from an object by using scanning laser vibrometers. To reduce measuring time and to measure transient object movements and vibrational mode structures of objects, several approaches to multibeam laser Doppler vibrometry have been developed, and some of them are already commercially available for short ranges. We focus on applications in the field of defense and security, such as target classification and identification, including camouflaged or partly concealed targets, and the detection of buried land mines. Examples of civil medium-range applications are also given.