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Proceedings Paper

RIN-suppressed ultralow noise interferometric fiber optic gyroscopes (IFOGs) for improving inertial stabilization of space telescopes
Author(s): Farhad Hakimi; John D. Moores
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Paper Abstract

Pointing, acquisition, and tracking (PAT) systems in spaceborne optical communications terminals can exploit inertial sensors and actuators to counter platform vibrations and maintain steady beam pointing. Interferometric fiber optic gyroscopes (IFOGs) can provide sensitive angle rate measurements down to very low (sub-milliHertz) mechanical frequencies, potentially reducing the required beacon power and facilitating acquisition for a spaceborne optical communications terminals. Incoherent broadband light sources are used in IFOGs to alleviate detrimental effects of optical nonlinearities, backscattering, and polarization non-reciprocity. But incoherent broadband sources have excess noise or relative intensity noise (RIN), caused by the beating of different spectral components on the photodetector. Unless RIN noise is suppressed, IFOG performance cannot be improved once the light on the photodetector exceeds one photon per coherence time (~microWatts). We propose a simple method to dramatically suppress the RIN of an incoherent light source and thereby reduce the angle random walk (ARW) of an IFOG using such a source. We demonstrate 20 dB RIN suppression of a broadband EDFA source, which we predict could improve the angle random walk (ARW) of an IFOG using this source by 12 dB.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 March 2013
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 8610, Free-Space Laser Communication and Atmospheric Propagation XXV, 861009 (19 March 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2009246
Show Author Affiliations
Farhad Hakimi, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
John D. Moores, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8610:
Free-Space Laser Communication and Atmospheric Propagation XXV
Hamid Hemmati; Don M. Boroson, Editor(s)

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