A technique for simulating large optical path lengths by use of digital delay buffers is presented. This technique is used to generate a synthetic interferometer with one arm having an arbitrary length. The response of the interferometer to phase and frequency modulation is measured and found to be in agreement with predictions. This technique could be used to simulate long-baseline interferometric space missions such as the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
(000.2170) General : Equipment and techniques
(000.2780) General : Gravity
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(120.5050) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Phase measurement
(350.1270) Other areas of optics : Astronomy and astrophysics
James Ira Thorpe, Rachel Jean Cruz, Shannon Reynier Sankar, Guido Mueller, and Paul McNamara, "First step toward a benchtop model of the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna," Opt. Lett. 29, 2843-2845 (2004)