Abstract

We report a detailed analysis of wind–temperature (W/T) lidar systems based on mesospheric potassium as the tracer. Currently, most narrow-band W/T systems use sodium (Na) as the tracer because of its relatively large natural abundance, large cross section, and the ability to use Doppler-free Na spectroscopy to generate accurate absolute frequency markers. We show that a potassium-based system with existing near-infrared solid-state laser technology operating at the potassium D lines has the potential to make W/T measurements that are more accurate than current Na narrow-band systems and can be far simpler technically.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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