Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Electrical Engineering

Committee Chair/Advisor

Eric Johnson

Committee Member

Richard Groff

Committee Member

Suyi Li


Propagation of laser light is distorted in the presence of atmospheric turbulence. This poses an issue for sensing, free-space optical communications, and transmission of power. With an ever-increasing demand for high-speed data communications, particularly between satellites, unmanned vehicles, and other systems that benefit from a point-to-point link, this issue is critical for the field. A variety of methods have been proposed to circumvent this issue. Some major categories include the manipulation of the light’s structure, an adaptive scheme at the optical receiver, scanning mirror systems, or a transmission of simultaneous signals with a goal to improve robustness.

There is an inherent advantage to a turbulence mitigation scheme that can be performed on the transmission side of an optical link. By rapidly probing a turbulent volume by varying a beam’s spatial and phase characteristics, the best transmission mode for an optical beam can be determined and controlled in real time. With the fast mode-switching capabilities of the HOBBIT (Higher-Order Bessel-Beams Integrated in Time) system, the dynamics of turbulence can be probed incredibly quickly. This work presents an optical control system that takes advantage of such a probing method, and greatly improves power efficiency and successful recovery of data through environments with strong turbulence.



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