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Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Vol. 15, Iss. 5 — May. 1, 1998
  • pp: 1212–1226

Wind-shear induced stabilization of PCI

David L. Fried and Roque Kwok-Hung Szeto  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 15, Issue 5, pp. 1212-1226 (1998)

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Phase compensation instability (PCI) is a runaway process associated with the operation of a closed-loop phase-only adaptive-optics system transmitting through the atmosphere a large-diameter laser beam with a high power density. Under most conditions such an operation introduces positive feedback;  if the laser power density is sufficiently high, there is the possibility of PCI-type runaway of the adaptive-optics servo. It is now known that the occurrence of PCI is inhibited by wind shear (wind-shear induced stabilization of PCI, or WISP) because at every different position along the propagation path the turbulent wind has a (slightly) different component of velocity in the plane transverse to the laser beam’s propagation direction. We develop a set of equations from which the conditions for the onset of PCI can be determined. Sample results are presented for propagation through an atmosphere with a negative exponential absorption profile—which nominally corresponds to ground-to-space propagation. The results indicate that for typical conditions (as a consequence of wind shear) one can transmit a rather substantial laser power density without encountering PCI. As an example of the application of our theory, the expected Strehl ratio for a HV5/7 turbulence model is evaluated for the parameters of a nominal ground-to-space high-energy laser beam propagation system.

© 1998 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1080) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Active or adaptive optics
(010.1300) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric propagation
(120.6810) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Thermal effects
(350.5030) Other areas of optics : Phase

Original Manuscript: April 22, 1997
Revised Manuscript: November 24, 1997
Manuscript Accepted: November 24, 1997
Published: May 1, 1998

David L. Fried and Roque Kwok-Hung Szeto, "Wind-shear induced stabilization of PCI," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 15, 1212-1226 (1998)

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