Abstract

A novel dual-air-gap fiber-optic Mach–Zehnder interferometer is proposed for the direct measurement of the atmospheric optical turbulence structure constant Cn2. The shot-noise-limited minimum detectable structure constant is estimated to be 4.5 × 10−20 m−2/3, which is more than 2 orders of magnitude below a typical value of 10−17 m−2/3 for weak turbulence. This sensor is suitable for the measurement of atmospheric turbulence over land and ocean surfaces.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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