25 May 2005 Latest results from the 32 km maritime lasercom link at the Naval Research Laboratory, Chesapeake Bay Lasercom Test Facility
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Abstract
The Naval Center for Space Technology at the Naval Research Laboratory reports the latest results from the long-range, maritime, free-space lasercom test facility located between Chesapeake Beach, MD and Tilghman Island, MD. The two sections of the facility are separated by 16.2 km of the Chesapeake Bay. Using a new OC-48 receiver developed by NRL’s Optical Science Division with a sensitivity of -33dBm for 10-9 bit error rate at 2.5 Gbps, we have closed a 32.4 km maritime lasercom link (round trip across the Chesapeake Bay) and performed bit error rate testing while transmitting 1.13 Terabytes of data. Bit error rate testing was also performed at lower data rates when atmospheric conditions were not favorable for high speed (2.5 Gbps), including testing at 150 Mbps through light fog and rain. In addition, we have set up a system for digitizing and transmitting full-color, uncompressed, video along with six audio channels and three RS-232 data channels over the maritime link. The digital link operated at 311 Mbps and could be maintained indefinitely, depending on atmospheric conditions. Several complete videos were transmitted in entirety or in part as well as live video from a handheld camcorder to test the system operation and robustness. The transmitter and receiver were co-located on the western shore of the bay at the NRL Chesapeake Bay Detachment. The data for both the bit error rate testing and the video was transmitted across the bay and returned from an array of retroreflectors located on a tower at Tilghman Island on the eastern shore. The lasercom links were closed with static pointing and with no active atmospheric aberration mitigation such as adaptive optics or fast steering mirrors on the receiver optics.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
H. R. Burris, C. I. Moore, L. A. Swingen, M. J. Vilcheck, D. A. Tulchinsky, R. Mahon, L. M. Wasiczko, M. F. Stell, M. R. Suite, M. A. Davis, S. W. Moore, W. S. Rabinovich, J. L. Murphy, G. C. Gilbreath, W. J. Scharpf, "Latest results from the 32 km maritime lasercom link at the Naval Research Laboratory, Chesapeake Bay Lasercom Test Facility", Proc. SPIE 5793, Atmospheric Propagation II, (25 May 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.606030; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.606030
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