OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 35, Iss. 22 — Aug. 1, 1996
  • pp: 4349–4354

Single-beam diode-laser technique for optical path-length measurements

Clinton B. Carlisle, Russell E. Warren, and Haris Riris  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 35, Issue 22, pp. 4349-4354 (1996)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (351 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



A simple single-beam technique employing radio-frequency modulation of a tunable diode laser with homodyne demodulation is demonstrated as a means of measuring optical path lengths. This technique offers a straightforward method for determining path lengths traversed through optical multipass cells or performing optical range-finding over short (i.e., tens of meters) standoff distances. The radio-frequency phase-sensitive nature of the technique permits narrow-band detection and high signal-to-noise ratios, even when range-finding measurements are made with range resolutions of ≪1 m. This compares favorably with traditional short-pulse, wide-bandwidth optical range finders.

© 1996 Optical Society of America

Original Manuscript: September 7, 1995
Revised Manuscript: February 22, 1996
Published: August 1, 1996

Clinton B. Carlisle, Russell E. Warren, and Haris Riris, "Single-beam diode-laser technique for optical path-length measurements," Appl. Opt. 35, 4349-4354 (1996)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. C. Polhemus, “Two-wavelength interferometry,” Appl. Opt. 12, 2071–2074 (1973). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. P. de Groot, S. Kishner, “Synthetic wavelength stabilization for two-color laser diode interferometry,” Appl. Opt. 30, 4026–4033 (1991). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. R. Onodera, Y. Ishii, “Two-wavelength phase-shifting interferometry insensitive to the intensity modulation of dual laser diodes,” Appl. Opt. 33, 5052–5061 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. H. Kikuta, K. Iwata, R. Nagata, “Distance measurement by the wavelength shift of laser diode light,” Appl. Opt. 25, 2976–2980 (1986). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. R. Danliker, R. Thalman, D. Prongue, “Two-wavelength laser interferometry using superheterodyne detection,” Opt. Lett. 13, 339–341 (1988). [CrossRef]
  6. I. Yamaguchi, K. Hamano, “Multiplexed heterodyne fiber interferometer that uses laser-diode modulation,” Opt. Lett. 20, 1661–1663 (1995). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. F. T. Arecchi, E. O. Schulz-Dubois, “Lasers in metrology,” in Laser Handbook (North-Holland, Amsterdam, 1976), pp. 1469–1476.
  8. D. Nitzan, A. E. Brain, R. O. Duda, “The measurement and use of registered reflectance and range data in scene analysis,” Proc. IEEE 65, 206–220 (1977). [CrossRef]
  9. G. C. Bjorklund, K. Jain, J. D. Hope, “Interferometric measurements with laser FM sidebands,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 38, 747–749 (1981). [CrossRef]
  10. A. Greve, W. Harth, “Laser diode distance meter in a KERN DKM 3A theodolite,” Appl. Opt. 23, 2982–2984 (1984). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. D. E. Cooper, R. E. Warren, “Two-tone optical heterodyne spectroscopy with diode lasers: theory of line shapes and experimental results,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 4, 470–480 (1987). [CrossRef]
  12. D. E. Cooper, R. E. Warren, “Frequency modulation spectroscopy with lead-salt diode lasers: a comparison of single-tone and two-tone techniques,” Appl. Opt. 26, 3726–3731 (1987). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  13. S. M. Kay, Fundamentals of Statistical Signal Processing: Estimation Theory (PTR Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, N.J., 1993).
  14. C. Harder, K. Vahala, A. Yariv, “Measurement of the linewidth enhancement factor α of semiconductor lasers,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 42, 328–330 (1983). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited