Abstract

The average bit error rate (ABER) performance of an avalanche-photodiode (APD)-based pulse-position modulation (PPM) free-space optical (FSO) communication system is investigated considering the aperture averaging effect. The approximate ABER expression is theoretically derived in terms of M and exponentiated Weibull (EW) distributions under weak-to-strong turbulent atmosphere conditions with a binary PPM (BPPM) scheme. Union-bound and Hermite polynomials are then considered to estimate the performance of M-ary PPM FSO systems. The system performance is analyzed with the aperture sizes, turbulence strengths, receiver temperatures, and average photon counts taken into account. The results show that an optimal average APD gain, which is affected by receiver temperature, can be chosen to minimize the ABER value. And the impact of aperture averaging on the system performance over M distribution is not so apparent as that over EW distribution for different temperatures, turbulent strengths, and average photon counts. In addition, the present APD-based system can offer better ABER performance than that of a P-i-N-based PPM system over both EW and M fading channels at 300 and 500 K. This work is beneficial to the FSO system design.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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