OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 17, Iss. 19 — Oct. 1, 1978
  • pp: 3117–3124

Astronomical monochromatic imaging as applied to the Io sodium cloud

Frank J. Murcray and Richard Goody  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 17, Issue 19, pp. 3117-3124 (1978)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (1344 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



We compare four types of instruments for recording monochromatic astronomical images: filters; slitless spectrographs; multislit spectrographs; and interferometers. Each of these instruments has been used on the sodium emission cloud of Io, with varying degrees of success. Multislit spectrographs and interferometers encode the signal, and it can be extracted with a noise level close to that for photon statistics. This is not normally the case for filters and slitless spectrographs. On balance, we find that a Mach-Zehnder interferometer provides the best system for imaging faint monochromatic signals on a brighter continuum background.

© 1978 Optical Society of America

Original Manuscript: February 22, 1978
Published: October 1, 1978

Frank J. Murcray and Richard Goody, "Astronomical monochromatic imaging as applied to the Io sodium cloud," Appl. Opt. 17, 3117-3124 (1978)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. R. A. Brown, Y. L. Yung. “Io, Its Atmosphere and Optical Emissions,” in Jupiter, T. Gehrels, Ed. (U. Arizona Press, Tucson, 1976), p. 1102.
  2. H. D. Babcock, Astrophys. J. 57, 209 (1923). [CrossRef]
  3. J. Bricard, A. Kastler, Ann. Geophys. 6, 286 (1950).
  4. H. C. Van de Hulst, “Scattering in the Atmospheres of the Earth and Planets,” in The Atmospheres of the Earth and Planets, G. P. Kuiper, Ed. (U. Chicago Press, Chicago, 1952), p 49.
  5. Telescope defects and plate scale vary between telescopes. When we wish to be specific, we refer to the 1.55-m Agassiz telescope of Harvard College Observatory, with the Cassegrain focus (f/20) changed by a lens to f/9.6 and a plate scale of 13 sec of arc/mm.
  6. D. L. Matson, B. A. Goldberg, T. V. Johnson, R. W. Carlson, “Images of Io’s Sodium Cloud,” submitted to Science (1978). [CrossRef]
  7. R. Goody, J. Apt, Planet. Space Sci. 25, 603 (1977). [CrossRef]
  8. G. Münch, J. T. Bergstralh, Publ. Astron. Soc. Pac. 89, 232 (1977). [CrossRef]
  9. F. J. Murcray, R. M. Goody, “Pictures of the Io Sodium Cloud,” submitted to Astrophys. J. (1978). [CrossRef]
  10. A. M. Title, Appl. Opt. 15, 2871 (1976). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. H. K. Palmer, Lick Obs. Bull. 2, 46 (1902).
  12. Units for D arc sec of arc/Å, and it depends upon both on the telescope and the spectrograph. D′, measured in mm/Å, depends only on the spectrograph design. If ρ is the telescope plate scale in sec of arc/mm, then D = ρD′.
  13. O. C. Wilson, G. Münch, E. M. Glather, M. F. Coffeen, Astrophys. J. Suppl. Ser. 4, 199 (1959). [CrossRef]
  14. It is only partly coincidence that the dispersion is close to the limit given by Eq. (6). The optimum design of a spectrograph for stellar observations matches seeing (1–2 sec of arc) and limiting spectral resolution (~0.05 Å). The coincidence arises because the Na D-lines have widths close to the limiting resolution.
  15. L. Mertz, Appl. Opt. 16, 812 (1977). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.


Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3
Fig. 4 Fig. 5

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited