Colloquium of the Computational Materials Science Center (CMaSC)
Light detection and ranging (LiDAR) is one of the most rapidly growing fields of geospatial science. LiDAR can operate in airborne, terrestrial, or mobile (vehicle-based) modes. It has traditionally been used to precisely map the topography of a region or to obtain highly accurate range measurements. However, there has recently been an effort to use LiDAR as a remote sensing tool. More specifically, the laser pulse of the LiDAR can be used as an excitation source for photoluminescent and retroreflective materials. Some applications include the remote signal recovery from biological materials, tamper/change detection, and targeting, tracking, and locating.
Computational techniques have been used to model some of the photoluminescent organic molecules. Density Functional Theory (DFT) and Time-Dependent DFT (TDDFT) prove to be useful in understanding the molecules' ground and excited states, respectively. Together with the calculated vibronic spectra, the emission from the molecules can be modeled. These results will be presented together with a discussion about the need for more computational research in LiDAR-relevant materials.