Abstract

A method for measuring absolute distance by the wavelength shift of laser diode light has previously been proposed. In this work three serious systematic error sources for the method are discussed and some of the discussion is confirmed by experiment. The error sources are optical feedback effect, longitudinal mode distribution of laser light, and unwanted light reflected from optical devices (coherent noise). The optical feedback effect influences the wavelength shift of the emitted light. The mode distribution causes the periodic error dependent on the measured distance, and the maximum error is determined by the change in the intensity ratio of the submodes to the main mode. Coherent noise causes the periodic error also dependent on the distance, and the maximum error is determined by the amplitude ratio of the measuring lightwave to the noise. These systematic errors are observed in some demonstrative experiments.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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