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2 May 2009 High-speed laser wavelength agility, stabilization, and locking for heterodyne detection differential scatter lidar
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A high repetition rate, wavelength agile heterodyne detection lidar system is being developed at Coherent Applications, Inc. (CAI). The motivation behind this endeavor is the potential ultra-high sensitivity of heterodyne detection for measuring the low intensity signals of long-range measurements of aerosols. Since speckle noise limits the overall signal-to-noise for each pulse to a maximum of unity, important considerations in heterodyne detection system design are the tradeoffs using lower energy pulses at high pulse repetition frequency (prf) compared with high-energy pulses at low prf. Differential scattering/differential absorption lidar (DISC/DIAL) measurements require precise determination of ratios of the signal levels at two or more wavelengths, and measurements need to be completed within a brief period, so that conditions remain constant. The additional requirement to average a large number of pulses to overcome speckle noise dictates that a high pulse repetition rate is needed. Detection sensitivity is further increased by reducing the receiver bandwidth, and this requires that the optical frequencies of the transmitter and the local oscillator lasers must be maintained with a stable and fixed offset relative to each other at the heterodyne intermediate frequency. This paper provides a general description of the aerosol lidar system that integrates high-speed laser stabilization and intermediate frequency locking of two wavelength agile lasers for heterodyne detection lidar.
© (2009) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Diego F. Pierrottet, George E. Busch, Bruce W. Barnes, Thedric D. Jones, and Raphael Moon "High-speed laser wavelength agility, stabilization, and locking for heterodyne detection differential scatter lidar", Proc. SPIE 7323, Laser Radar Technology and Applications XIV, 73230U (2 May 2009);

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