Abstract

A real-time optical correlator is described that uses an ultrasonic light modulator (ULM) in conjunction with an amplitude mask or replica of the signal to achieve linear, phase-coherent detection, without need for high quality optics. When the mask is placed in a Fresnel image plane of the ULM, optimum correlation and collinear heterodyning are achieved. Correlator response has been calculated and measured as a function of mask–ULM separation for a pulse modulated cw signal and a square wave modulated fm waveform. For essentially band-limited signals, the output is a pair of symmetrically time-shifted, matched filter responses, possessing negligible quadratic phase distortion.

© 1968 Optical Society of America

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