Adaptive Polarization Diversity Detection Scheme for Coherent Communications and Interferometric Fiber Sensors
Patent, Filed 12 Dec 1994, patented 16 Nov 1999
DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY WASHINGTON DC
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A method and apparatus for overcoming polarization induced signal fading in both heterodyne communication and interferometric sensing. An adjustable birefringent element in series with a linear-polarization beam splitter forms an elliptical-polarization beam splitter. The birefringent element controllably evolves the states of polarization of two input signals thereby controlling the power contribution of each signal onto the orthogonal axes used by the linear beam splitter. When the states of polarization are evolved such that there are equal signal to reference power ratios on the beam splitter axes, subsequent detectors generate a constant, optimum amplitude signal without the need for weighting or decision circuits.