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First results on the Experiment FESTER on optical turbulence over False Bay South Africa: Dependencies and consequences

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Author: Sprung, D. · Van Eijk, A.M.J. · Sucher, E. · Eisele, C. · Seiffer, D. · Stein, K.
Publisher: SPIE
Source:Gonglewski, J.D.Stein, K.U., Optics in Atmospheric Propagation and Adaptive Systems XIX. 28 September 2016 through 29 September 2016, 10002
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Identifier: 745578
doi: doi:10.1117/12.2240651
ISBN: 9781510604087
Article number: 1000209
Keywords: Adaptive optics · Adaptive systems · Experiments · Optical systems · Turbulence · Atmospheric propagation · Electro-optical systems · Intensive observation periods · Maritime environment · Optical turbulence · scintillometer · Sonic anemometer · Transmission experiments · Atmospheric thermodynamics · 2015 Observation, Weapon & Protection Systems · ED - Electronic Defence · TS - Technical Sciences


The experiment FESTER (First European South African Transmission ExpeRiment) took place in 2015 to investigate the atmospheric influence on electro-optical systems performance across False Bay / South Africa on a long term basis. Several permanent stations for monitoring electro-optical propagation and atmospheric parameters were set up around the Bay. Additional intensive observation periods (IOPs) allowed for boat runs to assess the inhomogeneous atmospheric propagation conditions over water. In this paper we focus on the distribution of optical turbulence over the Bay. The different impact of water masses originating from the Indian Ocean and the Benguela current on the development of optical turbulence is discussed. The seasonal behavior of optical turbulence is presented and its effect on electro-optical system performance examined. © 2016 SPIE. The Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)