From Event: SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications, 2017
The availability of a cloud free line of sight (CFLOS) for a ground-space free space optical (FSO) link is strongly dependent on a satellite’s orbit and local cloud cover spatial and temporal statistics for all potential ground stations (GS) in the satellite’s field of regard. A diverse network of multiple GS at locations with minimal and uncorrelated cloud cover can be used to maximize the availability of a CFLOS to multiple satellite orbits. Historic cloud cover data for this availability study is extracted from the ERA-Interim database which is generated, updated, and maintained by the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecast (ECMWF). The database contains worldwide data in 6 hour time segments from 1970 to the present. For our analysis, cloud cover data, ground station locations, and satellite ephemerides are conjointly analyzed to determine ground-space link availabilities. The results of this analysis will be presented.
Lindsey Willstatter, Christopher I. Moore, Taylor Page, Jake Griffiths, and Linda Thomas, "Cloud free optical link probabilities to satellites from multiple ground stations," Proc. SPIE 10408, Laser Communication and Propagation through the Atmosphere and Oceans VI, 104080F (Presented at SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications: August 08, 2017; Published: 30 August 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2275319.
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