Detection of multiple coaxial optical vortices with a Shack-Hartman sensor in atmospheric turbulence

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Abstract

The Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor has proven to be a valuable detector particularly in the context of turbulence and adaptive optics. In this work we take advantage of its capacity of characterizing orbital-angular-momentum (OAM) states under certain conditions, in the context of a free-space optical communication link. First, we propose a method to compute the locations of the light spots created by the lenslet array that is more robust than the simple centroid formula when atmospheric turbulence is present. Second, we propose a "local OAM" estimation that avoids the computation of a circulation integral in the discrete Shack-Hartmann array. Our proposal does not require prior knowledge of beam diameter or OAM state. We show simulations and laboratory experiments for OAM beams in turbulence conditions at which reliable detection is feasible. We analyze the quality of detection as a function of turbulence strength, Shack-Hartmann resolution and number of acquisitions. These ideas can be applied to coherent coaxial superpositions of two or more OAM states if the light rings are non-overlapping. Using the concept of "optical ferris-wheels" introduced by Franke-Arnold et al. (2007), the detection can be implemented for a limited set of pairs of vortices. We propose a generalization of the recipe for generation of ferris-wheels now for pairs of orthogonal vortices with arbitrary OAM states. The proposal is supported by simulations in turbulence conditions. An extension of our work considers the use of error-correcting codes that take advantage of the large set of available combinations of OAM states.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLaser Communication and Propagation through the Atmosphere and Oceans VII
EditorsAlexander M.J. Van Eijk, Jeremy P. Bos, Stephen M. Hammel
PublisherSPIE
ISBN (Electronic)9781510621114
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018
EventLaser Communication and Propagation through the Atmosphere and Oceans VII 2018 - San Diego, United States
Duration: 20 Aug 201822 Aug 2018

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume10770
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X

Conference

ConferenceLaser Communication and Propagation through the Atmosphere and Oceans VII 2018
CountryUnited States
CitySan Diego
Period20/08/1822/08/18

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work is supported by Millennium Institute for Research in Optics, CONICYT-Chile (FR-1160887 and FR-1170460), and by Universidad de los Andes-Chile.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 SPIE.

Keywords

  • Optical angular momentum
  • Shack-Hartmann sensor
  • wave-front sensing

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