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Proceedings Paper

Characterization of optical turbulence in a jet engine exhaust with Shack-Hartmenn wavefront sensor
Author(s): R. Deron; F. Mendez
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Paper Abstract

Airborne laser countermeasure applications (DIRCM) are hampered by the turbulence of jet engine exhaust. The effects of this source of perturbation on optical propagation have still to be documented and analyzed in order to get a better insight into the different mechanisms of the plume perturbations and also to validate CFD/LES codes. For that purpose, wave front sensing has been used as a non-intrusive optical technique to provide unsteady and turbulent optical measurements through a plume of a jet engine installed at a fixed point on the ground. The experiment has been implemented in October 2007 along with other optical measuring techniques at Volvo Aero Corporation (Trollhättan, Sweden). This study is part of a European research programme dealing with DIRCM issues. The Shack- Hartmann (SH) wave front sensing technique was employed. It consisted of 64 x 64 lenslets coupled to a 1024x1024 pixel Dalsa CCD sensor working at a sampling rate of 40 Hz. A 15 ns pulsed laser synchronized with the SH sensor enabled "freezing" turbulence in each SH image. The ability of the technique to substract a reference permitted a simple calibration procedure to ensure accurate and reliable measurements despite vibration environment. Instantaneous phases are reconstructed using Fourier techniques so as to obtain a better spatial resolution against turbulent effects. Under any given plume condition, overall tilt aberration prevails. Phase power spectra derived from phase statistics are drawn according to the plume main axis and to normal axis. They compare favorably well to the decaying Kolmogorov power law on a useful high spatial frequency range. Averaged phases are also decomposed into Zernike polynomials to analyze optical mode behavior according to engine status and to plume abscissa. With overall tilt removed, turbulent DSP's amplitude drops by a factor of 30 to 40 and mean aberrations by a factor of 10 from an abscissa 1 meter to another 3.5 meters away from the engine nozzle, due to quite different turbulent conditions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 October 2008
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 7115, Technologies for Optical Countermeasures V, 71150F (2 October 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.803573
Show Author Affiliations
R. Deron, Office National d'Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (France)
F. Mendez, Office National d'Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (France)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7115:
Technologies for Optical Countermeasures V
David H. Titterton; Mark A. Richardson, Editor(s)

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