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Proceedings Paper

The experimental determination of on-off keying laser communications probability models and a comparison with theory
Author(s): William Brown; Bruce Wallin; Daniel Lesniewski; David Gooding; James Martin
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Paper Abstract

It is well known that atmospheric turbulence diminishes the performance of laser communications systems. Among the multiple degradations caused by turbulence is fading and surging of the received signal, usually referred to as scintillation. If a minimum probability of error receiver is employed for on-off keying (OOK), it is necessary to understand the two conditional probability densities (pdfs) corresponding to the transmission of ones and zeros. These probability densities are the distributions of signals received when the laser is on when sending binary ones and when the laser is off sending binary zeros. Many theoretical studies have determined the expected forms of the pdfs. An ongoing experimental study operating a low-power, low data rate link over a range of 9.3 Km has been started at Colorado State University-Pueblo to carefully examine the effects of atmospheric turbulence on laser communications. Experimental models of actual, true and typical pdfs have been obtained. The results do not always match theoretical predictions. The non-stationary nature of these pdfs is also a problem that must be addressed. This paper summarizes the experimental testing and shares a number of its conclusions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 March 2006
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 6105, Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies XVIII, 61050U (1 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.659908
Show Author Affiliations
William Brown, Colorado State Univ.-Pueblo (United States)
Bruce Wallin, Colorado State Univ.-Pueblo (United States)
Daniel Lesniewski, Colorado State Univ.-Pueblo (United States)
David Gooding, Colorado State Univ.-Pueblo (United States)
James Martin, Colorado State Univ.-Pueblo (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6105:
Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies XVIII
G. Stephen Mecherle, Editor(s)

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