Abstract

The presence of atmospheric refractive turbulence makes it necessary to use simulations of beam propagation to examine the uncertainty added to the differential absorption lidar (DIAL) measurement process of a practical heterodyne lidar. The inherent statistic uncertainty of coherent return fluctuations in ground lidar systems profiling the atmosphere along slant paths with large elevation angles translates into a lessening of accuracy and sensitivity of any practical DIAL measurement. This technique opens the door to consider realistic, nonuniform atmospheric conditions for any DIAL instrument configuration.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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