Frontiers of Optoelectronics

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 166–173 | Cite as

Off-axis two-mirror laser communication antenna designed using differential equations

  • Chunqiu Xia
  • Xing Zhong
Research Article


In satellite laser communication technology, which is built between planets and between a planet and the Earth, the optical antenna is the key point. Thus, research on optical system design is important. The off-axis reflective system has no obscuration and hence possesses a high efficiency for energy transfer. This study proposes a novel method for designing a free-form off-axis reflective imaging system. This study also introduces differential equations that depend on Fermat’s principle and sine condition. Finally, a free-form off-axis two-mirror optical system was designed by using the differential equation method. This system includes one intermediate image plane, in which the field of view (FOV) is–5° to–4° in the y-axis and–1° to 0° in the x-axis. The modulation transfer function was greater than 0.7 at 50 lp/mm, and the efficiency of energy transmission was high. The free-form off-axis two-mirror optical system involves a wide range of application prospects in the optical antenna used in the satellite laser communication systems. Moreover, the design method that used differential equations was proven simple and effective.


optical antenna design off-axis reflective system satellite laser communication 


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This study was supported by the Youth Innovation Promotion Association, Chinese Academy of Sciences and the National Science Foundation for Young Scholars of China (Grant No. 61505203).


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Changchun Institute of Optics and Fine MechanicsChinese Academy of SciencesChangchunChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Chang Guang Satellite Technology Co. Ltd.ChangchunChina

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