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Polarization lidar measurements of honey bees in flight for locating land mines

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A scanning polarized lidar was used to detect flying honey bees trained to locate buried land mines through odor detection. A lidar map of bee density shows good correlation with maps of chemical plume strength and bee density determined by visual and video counts. The co-polarized lidar backscatter signal was found to be more effective than the cross-polarized signal for detecting honey bees in flight. Laboratory measurements show that the depolarization ratio of scattered light is near zero for bee wings and up to 30% for bee bodies.

©2005 Optical Society of America

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Figures (8)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1. Horizontally scanning lidar system (scanning driven by DC motor). The laser head actually was located below the telescope, on the back side of the mounting plate, but here it is shown next to the telescope for simplicity.
Fig. 2.
Fig. 2. Layout for the 2003 mine-field bee lidar experiment.
Fig. 3.
Fig. 3. Graphical time series of 16.7-second duration, showing of bees detected over a 6-m range with (a) co-polarized and (b) cross-polarized light (each black line is one bee). This figure shows that bees are detected most often and strongly with co-polarized backscatter. The vertical axis on both subplots shows the same range segment (6 m) in a region centered over a bee feeder. Note that these plots show only the bees that passed the threshold filter.
Fig. 4.
Fig. 4. Median-corrected lidar data for one scan across the mine field (13 s one-way). The tall spikes are from corner posts and video camera tripods. Bees are the smaller spikes, approximately an order of magnitude weaker than the obstructions.
Fig. 5.
Fig. 5. (a) Scanning lidar measurements of relative bee density, (b) chemical measurements of TNT and 2.4-DNT vapor plumes [3], and (c) visual and video camera relative bee density [3]. Each map has the same grid area (24 m × 44 m), but the lidar data are shown extending 2 m beyond each grid line to show displaced peaks. The lidar was located 83 m from the left edge. Maps are color coded to indicate zero with dark blue and maximum value with red. (Chemical plume #5 in Fig. 5b was an anomalous reading that is suspected to be contamination not present during the lidar measurements.)
Fig. 6.
Fig. 6. View from above a) bee body and b) bee wing, showing the zero reference and the positive scattering angle θ for a laser beam incident in the direction indicated by the arrow.
Fig. 7.
Fig. 7. Photographs of a bee body at +90± scattering angle (side-on) and bee wing near 0° scattering angle (normal incidence near the center of the wing). The wing photo also shows the curved shape of the quasi-specular wing surface.
Fig. 8.
Fig. 8. Depolarization ratio vs. orientation angle for (top) bee body and (bottom) bee wing. Error bars are the size of the symbols except at large orientation angles for the wing.


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