Abstract

A new target-in-the-loop (TIL) atmospheric sensing concept for in situ remote measurements of major laser beam characteristics and atmospheric turbulence parameters is proposed and analyzed numerically. The technique is based on utilization of an integral relationship between complex amplitudes of the counterpropagating optical waves known as overlapping integral or interference metric, whose value is preserved along the propagation path. It is shown that the interference metric can be directly measured using the proposed TIL sensing system composed of a single-mode fiber-based optical transceiver and a remotely located retro-target. The measured signal allows retrieval of key beam and atmospheric turbulence characteristics including scintillation index and the path-integrated refractive index structure parameter.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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