FirstSpear TV

WindSceptor Wind Speed and Range Finder

The WindSceptor from Optical Air Data Systems is a laser wind and range finder which remotely measures wind speed, direction, and range-to-target.

The system works by firing series of 1550nm eye-safe laser pulses into the atmosphere. As the laser pulses travel through the air, a small fraction of the laser light is reflected from microscopic dust particles naturally entrained in the air. Sensors detect this reflected light and compute the speed and direction of travel of these dust particles (and consequently the speed and direction of the three-dimensional wind) using the Doppler Principle.

There are currently three devices in the WindSceptor line:

Tempest is a 3.25 lbs handheld binocular. Measurement range out to 5,000m as well as head and crosswind measurements in six range gates between 50m and 500m.

Thunderbolt is a 14 oz rifle mounted device. Measures range to 1600m and head and crosswinds from 80-100m. Thunderbolt also includes visible and near-infrared laser pointers and illuminators.

WindSceptor 4 weighs 8 lbs and features an integrated optic and integrated tripod. It ranges out to 5,000m as well as head and crosswind measurements in six range gates out to 1,000m.

All of the systems feature integrated GPS/IMU and offers Bluetooth as well as cursor-on-target data output as well an internal rechargeable battery.

Naturally, you’d immediately consider this technology for use on weapons to improve accuracy and it’s already being used for that.

However, there are applications in the aviation realm which bear consideration. For example, Combat Controllers could use a system to read winds around assault landing zones to improve safety. Likewise, Drop Zone Safety Officers could read winds on large DZs rather than relying on limited wind speed sampling using an anemometer.

4 Responses to “WindSceptor Wind Speed and Range Finder”

  1. J says:

    Good to see the Air Force is still using the M81 woodland BDUs in the photo above. OCP can be too bright for some environments. They just need to upgrade M81 woodland to current technology for IR masking and material to equip us in the 21st Century.