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Proceedings Paper

Impact of scintillation on laser communication systems: recent advances in modeling
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Paper Abstract

Laser communication systems offer several advantages over conventional radio frequency (RF) systems but, because of shorter wavelength, are subject to various atmospheric effects. Particularly significant in this regard is the signal fading below a prescribed threshold value owing primarily to optical scintillations associated with the received signal. Over terrestrial paths of 1 - 3 km, or at large zenith angles between the transmitter and receiver in an uplink/downlink channel, the intensity fluctuations can easily exceed the limitations imposed by weak fluctuation theory. Under strong conditions the intensity fluctuations can no longer be modeled by a lognormal distribution - instead, we find the gamma-gamma distribution to be an excellent model over virtually all conditions of irradiance fluctuations. In this paper we discuss some recent advances in the modeling of optical scintillation under weak-to- strong fluctuations associated with both terrestrial links and satellite/ground links. The analysis presented here specifically addresses scintillation effects on detector signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and on related fading probability and error probability or bit error rate (BER). We also discuss the use of multiple aperture receivers to mitigate the effects of optical turbulence.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 January 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4489, Free-Space Laser Communication and Laser Imaging, (22 January 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.453235
Show Author Affiliations
Larry C. Andrews, CREOL/Univ. of Central Florida (United States)
Ronald L. Phillips, CREOL/Univ. of Central Florida (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4489:
Free-Space Laser Communication and Laser Imaging
David G. Voelz; Jennifer C. Ricklin, Editor(s)

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