A numerical wave optics approach for simulating a partial spatially coherent beam is presented. The approach involves the application of a sequence of random phase screens to an initial beam field and the summation of the intensity results after propagation. The relationship between the screen parameters and the spatial coherence function for the beam is developed and the approach is verified by comparing results with analytic formulations for a Gaussian Schell-model beam. The approach can be used for modeling applications such as free space optical laser links that utilize partially coherent beams.
©2006 Optical Society of America
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