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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 48, Iss. 21 — Jul. 20, 2009
  • pp: 4256–4262

Path-averaged C n 2 estimation using a laser-and-corner-cube system

Walter P. Cole and Michael A. Marciniak  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 48, Issue 21, pp. 4256-4262 (2009)

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As a finite cross-section laser beam propagates through the atmosphere, the beam spreads due to both diffraction and atmospheric turbulence effects. Using turbulence theory valid in both weak and strong optical turbulence regimes, a relationship between atmospheric beam spread and the resulting return power for an optical system and the refractive-index structure parameter or C n 2 can be established. A technique for estimating the path-averaged C n 2 using a laser-and-corner-cube system based on this relationship is described. Experimental results using near-infrared laser wavelengths show good agreement between theoretical predictions and scintillometer-measured C n 2 values for near-ground line-of-sight propagation paths.

OCIS Codes
(010.1300) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric propagation
(010.1330) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric turbulence
(010.3310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Laser beam transmission

ToC Category:
Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

Original Manuscript: April 2, 2009
Revised Manuscript: June 16, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: June 24, 2009
Published: July 17, 2009

Walter P. Cole and Michael A. Marciniak, "Path-averaged Cn2 estimation using a laser-and-corner-cube system," Appl. Opt. 48, 4256-4262 (2009)

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