27 April 2016 Design and implementation of flexible laboratory system for beam propagation study through weak atmospheric turbulence
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Different applications such as astronomy, remote optical sensing and free space optical communications, among others, require both numerical and laboratory experimental simulations of beam propagation through turbulent atmosphere prior to an outdoor test. While rotating phase plates or hot chambers can be applied to such studies, they do not allow changing the atmospheric conditions and the propagation distance in situ. In contrast, the spatial light modulators (SLMs) are a flexible alternative for experimental turbulence simulation. In this work we consider an experimental setup comprising two SLMs for studying laser beam propagation in weak atmospheric turbulence. The changes of atmospheric conditions and propagation distances are properly achieved by the adjustment of the phase screens and the focal distances of digital lenses implemented in both SLMs. The proposed system can be completely automatized and all its elements are in fixed positions avoiding mechanical misalignment. Its design, propagation distance and atmospheric condition adjustment are provided. The setup performance is verified by numerical simulation of Gaussian beam propagation in the weak turbulence regime. The obtained parameters: scintillation index, beam wander and spreading are compared to their theoretical counterparts for different propagation distances and atmospheric conditions.
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Carolina Rickenstorff, Carolina Rickenstorff, Jóse A. Rodrigo, Jóse A. Rodrigo, Tatiana Alieva, Tatiana Alieva, "Design and implementation of flexible laboratory system for beam propagation study through weak atmospheric turbulence", Proc. SPIE 9889, Optical Modelling and Design IV, 98890F (27 April 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2222304; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2222304

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