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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 17, Iss. 11 — May. 25, 2009
  • pp: 9300–9313

Femtosecond frequency comb based distance measurement in air

Petr Balling, Petr Křen, Pavel Mašika, and S.A. van den Berg  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 17, Issue 11, pp. 9300-9313 (2009)

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Interferometric measurement of distance using a femtosecond frequency comb is demonstrated and compared with a counting interferometer displacement measurement. A numerical model of pulse propagation in air is developed and the results are compared with experimental data for short distances. The relative agreement for distance measurement in known laboratory conditions is better than 10-7. According to the model, similar precision seems feasible even for long-distance measurement in air if conditions are sufficiently known. It is demonstrated that the relative width of the interferogram envelope even decreases with the measured length, and a fringe contrast higher than 90% could be obtained for kilometer distances in air, if optimal spectral width for that length and wavelength is used. The possibility of comb radiation delivery to the interferometer by an optical fiber is shown by model and experiment, which is important from a practical point of view.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1300) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric propagation
(010.3310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Laser beam transmission
(120.0120) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(120.3940) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Metrology
(260.2030) Physical optics : Dispersion

ToC Category:
Instrumentation, Measurement, and Metrology

Original Manuscript: March 10, 2009
Revised Manuscript: April 17, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: April 18, 2009
Published: May 19, 2009

Petr Balling, Petr Křen, Pavel Mašika, and S. A. van den Berg, "Femtosecond frequency comb based distance measurement in air," Opt. Express 17, 9300-9313 (2009)

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