NEWS | June 11, 2012

Dr. Melvin Kruer Honored with 2012 Levinstein Award

By Donna McKinney

Dr Melvin R Kruer, the Senior Scientist for Electro-Optic Sensors at the Naval Research Laboratory, has been honored with the 2012 Levinstein Award presented by the Military Sensing Symposia Specialty Group on Detectors. The Levinstein Award is given to an individual who has demonstrated outstanding technical leadership and management in the field of infrared device technology. Committee chair, Mark Greiner, presented the award at the March Symposia.

Dr. Kruer has held the position of Senior Scientist for Advanced Electro-Optical (EO) Imaging Sensors in the Optical Sciences Division since November 2002. He directs a coherent research program in advanced visible and infrared techniques, devices, and sensor systems including time critical information processing and dissemination.

Dr. Kruer plays a key role in the researching, planning, and influencing the direction of programs in advanced technology for electro-optical imaging systems for the Navy. His specific areas of responsibility include large area focal plane arrays, advanced multi- and hyperspectral reconnaissance sensors, data acquisition and processing for hyperspectral sensors and change detection, and real time signal processing for autonomous target detection. This advanced technology is being applied to reconnaissance, air and surface infrared search and track, missile guidance, missile warning, periscope, and navigation systems. He collaborates with other scientists throughout the military services and world to ensure that significant opportunities in the area of advanced EO imaging sensors are incorporated in research initiatives undertaken by the team. Dr. Kruer has technically led several rapid prototype efforts that have successfully transitioned to production within the Navy.

Dr. Kruer's recent efforts include the development of a nighttime wide area persistent surveillance system to detect activity associated with the placement of improvised explosive devices. He is also working a new compact hyperspectral sensor capability implemented in a ball gimbal with associated compact real time signal processors and operator interfaces.

Dr. Kruer came to NRL in 1971 as a research physicist working in the Applied Optics Branch. In 1980 he was appointed as section head of the Sensor Technology Sensor Section, a position he held until he was named a Senior Scientist in 2002

Dr. Kruer received his bachelor's degree in physics from Bellarmine University and his master's and doctorate degrees, also in physics, from Catholic University of America. He has authored 240 publications and NRL formal reports, and he holds ten patents.

Dr. Kruer has been honored with an NRL Award of Merit for Group Achievement (1990, 1998, 2007), Dept. of Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award (1998), Technology Transfer Award (1998, 2010), NRL Review Award (2002), Chief of Naval Research Dr. Arthur E. Bisson Prize for Naval Technology Achievement (2002), Alan Berman Research Publication Award (2002, 2008, 2010), and Presidential Rank Meritorious Senior Professionals Award (2007). He has been a member of the American Physical Society, the Optical Society of America, the Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, and the Association of Old Crows. Dr. Kruer has served for 20 years as the Navy lead for the Detector Specialty subgroup of the Military Sensing Symposia (MSS) and is a Fellow of MSS.