Faculty of Computing, Health and Science
Electron Science Research Institute (ESRI)
Optimisation of the optical signal from the laser multi-spot beam generator employed in a photonic based real-time plant discrimination sensor for use in selective herbicide spraying systems is presented. The plant detection sensor uses a three-wavelength laser diode module that sequentially emits identically-polarized laser light beams through a common aperture, along one optical path. Each laser beam enters a multi-spot beam generator which produces 15 parallel laser beams over a 240mm span. The intensity of the reflected light from each spot is detected by a high-speed line scan image sensor. Plant discrimination is based on calculating the slope of the spectral response between the 635nm to 685nm and 685nm to 785nm laser wavelengths. Further optimisation of the optical signal is achieved by minimising the effect of daylight background noise by implementing a custom designed optical band-pass filter. The effectiveness of this filter is experimentally demonstrated.