Aberration correction for free space optical communications using rectangular zernike modal wavefront sensing

Feng Feng, Ian H. White, Timothy D. Wilkinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)


A time multiplexed rectangular Zernike modal wavefront sensor based on a nematic phase-only liquid crystal spatial light modulator and specially designed for a high power two-electrode tapered laser diode which is a compact and novel free space optical communication source is used in an adaptive beam steering free space optical communication system, enabling the system to have 1.25 GHz modulation bandwidth, 4.6° angular coverage and the capability of sensing aberrations within the system and caused by atmosphere turbulence up to absolute value of 0.15 waves amplitude and correcting them in one correction cycle. Closed-loop aberration correction algorithm can be implemented to provide convergence for larger and time varying aberrations. Improvement of the system signal-to-noise-ratio performance is achieved by aberration correction. To our knowledge, it is first time to use rectangular orthonormal Zernike polynomials to represent balanced aberrations for high power rectangular laser beam in practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6716993
Pages (from-to)1239-1245
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Lightwave Technology
Issue number6
Early online date20 Jan 2014
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2014


  • Adaptive optics
  • Beam steering
  • Free-space optical communications
  • Spatial light modulators (SLMs)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

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