Abstract

Analytical formulas for the Wigner distribution functions and the second-order moments (SOMs) of a twisted Gaussian Schell-model (TGSM) beam propagating through anisotropic turbulence have been derived by means of a tensor method. It is found that the propagation law for the SOMs of a TGSM beam spreading in turbulence can be described as a first-order optical systems propagation law with an additional turbulence-induced effect. Based on the SOMs, second-order statistics in terms of the effective beam width, the M2-factor, the orbital angular momentum flux, and the effective radius curvature are analyzed in detail. One finds that the anisotropic turbulence leads to an anisotropic spreading of light beams, and a TGSM beam is less affected by turbulence than a Gaussian Schell-model beam without the twist phase. For short distance propagation, the light beam is more sensitive to the initial beam parameters than turbulence parameters, while for sufficiently long transmission distance, the beam characteristics are determined at most by turbulence statistics. The method can be extended to study the propagation characteristics of various coherent and partially coherent complex Gaussian beams, such as flat-topped beams, dark hollow beams, and array beams in turbulence, and promotes important supports in free-space optical communications and remote sensing.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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