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7 October 2014 Real-time hardware background subtraction using an adjustable gain balance amplified photodetector
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The growth of optical communication has created a need to correctly characterize the atmospheric channel. The measurement of turbulence, due to its ability to drastically effect signal quality, is an important part of this characterization and can be partially accomplished via calculation of the scintillation index. However, proper calculation of the scintillation index requires that the background (specifically the diffuse solar background) be accurately subtracted from the transmitted signal. While there are many methods to remove this background we introduce a hardware based method which seeks to overcome the weaknesses of traditional approaches while adding its own strengths. The corrected signal is allowed a greater dynamic range and atmospheric background variations are accounted for during transmission. We begin by discussing the scintillation index and traditional means of background subtraction followed with an introduction of our proposed optical design. We provide details of the experimental setup, data collection over a maritime location in San Diego, and analysis. Finally, we compare scintillation index calculations using our new method and a traditional method of background subtraction. Our results ranked our method favorably alongside common methods of background subtraction.
© (2014) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Galen D. Cauble and David T. Wayne "Real-time hardware background subtraction using an adjustable gain balance amplified photodetector", Proc. SPIE 9224, Laser Communication and Propagation through the Atmosphere and Oceans III, 922410 (7 October 2014);

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