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Applied Optics

Applied Optics

APPLICATIONS-CENTERED RESEARCH IN OPTICS

  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 49, Iss. 4 — Feb. 1, 2010
  • pp: 714–717

Superheterodyne configuration for two-wavelength interferometry applied to absolute distance measurement

Sébastien Le Floch, Yves Salvadé, Nathalie Droz, Rostand Mitouassiwou, and Patrick Favre  »View Author Affiliations


Applied Optics, Vol. 49, Issue 4, pp. 714-717 (2010)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/AO.49.000714


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Abstract

We present a new superheterodyne technique for long-distance measurements by two-wavelength interferometry (TWI). While conventional systems use two acousto-optic modulators to generate two different heterodyne frequencies, here the two frequencies result from synchronized sweeps of optical and radio frequencies. A distributed feedback laser source is injected in an intensity modulator that is driven at the half-wave voltage mode. A radio-frequency signal is applied to this intensity modulator to generate two optical sidebands around the optical carrier. This applied radio frequency consists of a digital ramp between 13 and 15 GHz , with 1 ms duration and with an accuracy of better than 1 ppm . Simultaneously, the laser source is frequency modulated by a current modulation that is synchronized on the radio- frequency ramp as well as on a triangle waveform. These two frequency-swept optical signals at the output of the modulator illuminate a Michelson interferometer and create two distinct distance-dependent heterodyne frequencies on the photodetector. The superheterodyne signal is then detected and bandpass filtered to retrieve the absolute distance measurement. Experiments between 1 and 15 m confirm the validity of this new concept, leading to a distance accuracy of ± 50 μm for a 1 ms acquisition time.

© 2010 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.0120) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(140.0140) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers and laser optics
(140.3518) Lasers and laser optics : Lasers, frequency modulated

ToC Category:
Instrumentation, Measurement, and Metrology

History
Original Manuscript: November 11, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: January 7, 2010
Published: January 27, 2010

Citation
Sébastien Le Floch, Yves Salvadé, Nathalie Droz, Rostand Mitouassiwou, and Patrick Favre, "Superheterodyne configuration for two-wavelength interferometry applied to absolute distance measurement," Appl. Opt. 49, 714-717 (2010)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/abstract.cfm?URI=ao-49-4-714

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