Towards A Multi-FPGA Infrared Simulator
AbstractHigh speed infrared (IR) scene simulation is used extensively in defense and homeland security to test sensitivity of IR cameras and accuracy of IR threat detection and tracking algorithms used commonly in IR missile approach warning systems (MAWS). A typical MAWS requires an input scene rate of over 100 scenes/second. Infrared scene simulations typically take 32 minutes to simulate a single IR scene that accounts for effects of atmospheric turbulence, refraction, optical blurring and charge-coupled device (CCD) camera electronic noise on a Pentium 4 (2.8GHz) dual core processor 7. Thus, in IR scene simulation, the processing power of modern computers is a limiting factor. In this paper we report our research to accelerate IR scene simulation using high performance reconfigurable computing. We constructed a multi Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) hardware acceleration platform and accelerated a key computationally intensive IR algorithm over the hardware acceleration platform. We were successful in reducing the computation time of IR scene simulation by over 36%. This research acts as a unique case study for accelerating large scale defense simulations using a high performance multi-FPGA reconfigurable computer.