Optonicus to Advance Fiber Laser Arrays for the Joint Technology Office

Dayton, OH August 22, 2011 -- As a leader in fiber based array systems, Optonicus has been contracted by the Joint Technology Office (JTO) to develop a new type of wavefront sensing and beam control technique that allows obscuration free locking in phase of an array of high-energy lasers.

Conventional laser beam control techniques cannot be applied for coherent beam combining over longer distances. Extension of the operational range of fiber-array based high energy laser (HEL) beams to middle and long-range engagements requires development of novel beam control techniques.

Optonicus' technique eliminates the cumbersome presence of beam splitters located in front of the outgoing high-power beams making the scaling to a large number of fiber collimators feasible. Optonicus' technology optimizes the received power signal using SPGD or multi-dithering/LOCSET techniques resulting in phase locking of the HEL beams at the transmitter aperture instead. With this approach, the coherent beam combining is performed using two separate control systems: one for compensation of the amplifier system-induced phase shifts and the second for mitigation of atmospheric turbulence effects.