Abstract

A laser heterodyne system was used to measure the phase fluctuations imposed on a 1.5μm wavelength laser beam when double-passed over long atmospheric paths. Two distances were used: 2 and 17.5km. Results are given for intensity scintillation, phase fluctuation time series and spectra, and phase structure function. The results are found to agree well with theory: the spectrum of phase fluctuations follows the 8/3 power law predicted for Kolmogorov turbulence over 3 orders of magnitude in frequency. The methods reported here could be used to investigate large-scale temperature variations in the atmosphere.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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