Tech Briefs

Towed Subsurface Optical Communications Buoy

The innovation allows critical, high-bandwidth submarine communications at speed and depth. This reported innovation is a subsurface optical communications buoy, with active neutral buoyancy and streamlined flow surface veins for depth control. This novel subsurface positioning for the towed communications buoy enables substantial reduction in waterabsorption and increased optical transmission by eliminating the intervening water absorption and dispersion, as well as by reducing or eliminating the beam spread and the pulse spreading that is associated with submarine-launched optical beams.

This work was done by Robert C. Stirbl and William H. Farr of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . NPO-47737