Publications in Scientific Journals:

F. Fidler, M. Knapek, J. Horwath, W. Leeb:
"Optical Communications for High Altitude Platforms";
IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics, 16 (2010), 5; 1058 - 1070.

English abstract:
This paper contains a review of technologies, theoretical studies, and experimental field trials for optical communications from and to High Altitude Platforms (HAPs). We discuss the pointing, acquisition, and tracking of laser terminals and describe how laser beams with low divergence can be used to transmit data at multi-Gigabits per second. Investigating the influence of the atmosphere, background light, and flight qualification requirements on system design, we explain why the data rates in free-space optical communications are still significantly below those possible in today´s terrestrial fiber-based systems. Techniques like forward error correction, adaptive optics, and diversity reception are discussed. Such measures help to increase the data rate or link distance while keeping the bit error ratio and outage probability of the optical HAP communication system low.

free-space optical communication, laser beams, optical components, system analysis and design, terrestrial atmosphere, high altitude platform

Electronic version of the publication:

Created from the Publication Database of the Vienna University of Technology.