This paper proposes a theoretical study to characterize the transmission of optical code division multiple access (CDMA) systems deploying polarization shift keying (PolSK) over a free space optical (FSO) link under the impact of atmospheric turbulence. In our analysis, a novel transceiver architecture for atmospheric OCDMA FSO systems based on polarization modulation with direct detection is proposed and discussed. A detailed analytical model for PolSK-OCDMA systems over a turbulent FSO link is provided. Further, we derive a closed-form bit error ratio (BER) and outage probability expressions, taking into account the multiple-access interference (MAI), optical noise and the atmospheric turbulence effect on the FSO link modeled by the Gamma-Gamma distribution. Finally, the results of this study show the most significant parameters that degrade the transmission performance of the PolSK-OCDMA signal over FSO links and indicate that the proposed approach offers improved bit error ratio (BER) performances compared to the on-off-keying (OOK) modulation scheme in the presence of turbulence.
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