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Laser beacon wave-front sensing without focal anisoplanatism

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Abstract

Wave-front sensing from artificial beacons is normally performed by formation of a focused spot in the atmosphere and sensing of the wave-front distortions produced during the beam’s return passage. We propose an alternative method that senses the distortions produced during the outgoing path by forming an intensity pattern in the atmosphere that is then viewed from the ground. A key advantage of this method is that a parallel beam is used, and therefore the wave-front measurements will not suffer from the effects of focal anisoplanatism. We also envisage other geometries, all based on the concept of projecting a pupil pattern onto the atmosphere.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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