In an optical communication link between an optical ground station and a geostationary satellite the main problems appear in the uplink and are due to beam wander and to scintillation. Reliable methods for modeling both effects simultaneously are needed to provide an accurate tool with which the robustness of the communication channel can be tested. Numerical tools, especially the split-step method (also referred to as the fast-Fourier-transform beam propagation method), have demonstrated their ability to deal with problems of optical propagation during atmospheric turbulence. However, obtaining statistically significant results with this technique is computationally intensive. We present an analytical-numerical hybrid technique that provides good information on the variance in optical irradiance with an important saving of time and computational resources.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
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