Abstract

The calibration and traceability of high-resolution frequency modulated continuous wave (FMCW) ladar sources is a requirement for their use in length and volume metrology. We report the calibration of FMCW ladar length measurement systems by use of spectroscopy of molecular frequency references HCN (C-band) or CO (L-band) to calibrate the chirp rate of the FMCW sources. Propagating the stated uncertainties from the molecular calibrations provided by NIST and measurement errors provide an estimated uncertainty of a few ppm for the FMCW system. As a test of this calibration, a displacement measurement interferometer with a laser wavelength close to that of our FMCW system was built to make comparisons of the relative precision and accuracy. The comparisons performed show <10ppm agreement, which was within the combined estimated uncertainties of the FMCW system and interferometer.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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