Effects of wavefront sampling speed on the performance of adaptive astronomical telescopes

Timothy Joseph Kane, Chester S. Gardner, Laird A. Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Adaptive imaging systems have been developed to compensate for distortions introduced by atmospheric turbulence. Their performance is limited by the wavefront sampling rate which is constrained by the wavefront sensor processing time. This paper explores the degradation of system performance caused by limitations in the wavefront sampling rate. Errors introduced by finite image observation times are also examined. For bright images, a very short observation time per sampling period is shown to yield high system resolution. For the case of very faint images, continuous observation results in the best signal-to-noise ratio. Adaptively correcting a 4-m telescope is shown to improve the detection threshold by nearly three visual magnitudes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)214-221
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Optics
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 10 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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