Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Stephen C. Cain, PhD.


For conventional imaging systems, GEO space objects cannot be resolved due to their 40 Mm distance. There exists a strong need to obtain high resolution images of GEO objects and to accomplish this task, investigation into the suitability of ISAL is currently underway. A critical component in determining this suitability is to accurately model the atmospheric impacts on LADAR pulses. Conventional knowledge says that while the atmosphere churns, wind is the predominant cause of temporal evolution which simplifies all modeling and simulation into the frozen flow hypothesis. The concern is that the frozen flow hypothesis based phase screen generation techniques fail to accurately predict the temporal development of optical phase. This thesis proposes a new approach and provides a detailed derivation of a new temporally evolving Zernike polynomial based atmospheric phase screen generation model. This new model is experimentally verified, and utilized to analyze atmospheric impacts on mixing efficiencies. It is shown that this new turbulent flow model more accurately predicts mixing efficiency than that of the basic frozen flow approximation.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number