Optical propagation through a homogeneous turbulent shear flow
ABSTRACT Effects of organized turbulent structures on the propagation of an optical beam in a homogeneous shear flow have been studied. A passive-scalar field in a computed turbulent shear flow is used to represent index-of-refraction fluctuations, and phase errors induced in a coherent optical beam by turbulent fluctuations are computed. The organized vortical structures produce a scalar distribution with elongated regions of intense fluctuations which have an inclination with respect to the mean flow similar to that of the characteristic hairpin eddies. It is found that rms phase error is minimized by propagating approximately normal to the inclined vortical structures. Two-point correlations of vorticity and scalar fluctuation suggest that the regions of intense scalar fluctuation are produced primarily by the hairpin eddies.