Abstract

There have been many analyses of the reduction of lidar system efficiency in bistatic geometry caused by beam spreading and by fluctuations along the two paths generated by refractive-index turbulence. Although these studies have led to simple, approximate results that provide a reliable basis for preliminary assessment of lidar performance, they do not apply to monostatic lidars. For such systems, calculations and numerical simulations predict an enhanced coherence for the backscattered field. However, to the authors’ knowledge, a simple analytical mathematical framework for diagnosing the effects of refractive-index turbulence on the performance of both bistatic and monostatic coherent lidars does not exist. Here analytical empirical expressions for the transverse coherence variables and the heterodyne intensity are derived for bistatic and monostatic lidars as a function of moderate atmospheric refractive-index turbulence within the framework of the Gaussian-beam approximation.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

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