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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 41, Iss. 1 — Jan. 1, 2002
  • pp: 11–20

Adaptive optics with four laser guide stars: correction of the cone effect in large telescopes

Elise Viard, Miska Le Louarn, and Norbert Hubin  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 41, Issue 1, pp. 11-20 (2002)

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We study the performance of an adaptive optics (AO) system with four laser guide stars (LGSs) and a natural guide star (NGS). The residual cone effect with four LGSs is obtained by a numerical simulation. This method allows the adaptive optics system to be extended toward the visible part of the spectrum without tomographic reconstruction of three-dimensional atmospheric perturbations, resolving the cone effect in the visible. Diffraction-limited images are obtained with 17-arc ms precision in median atmospheric conditions at wavelengths longer than 600 nm. The gain achievable with such a system operated on an existing AO system is studied. For comparison, performance in terms of achievable Strehl ratio is also computed for a reasonable system composed of a 40 × 40 Shack–Hartmann wave-front sensor optimized for the I band. Typical errors of a NGS wave front are computed by use of analytical formulas. With the NGS errors and the cone effect, the Strehl ratio can reach 0.45 at 1.25 µm under good-seeing conditions with the Nasmyth Adaptive Optics System (NAOS; a 14 × 14 subpupil wave-front sensor) at the Very Large Telescope and 0.8 with a 40 × 40 Shack–Hartmann wave-front sensor.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1330) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric turbulence
(010.3310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Laser beam transmission
(110.4280) Imaging systems : Noise in imaging systems
(120.5050) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Phase measurement

Original Manuscript: February 7, 2001
Revised Manuscript: July 25, 2001
Published: January 1, 2002

Elise Viard, Miska Le Louarn, and Norbert Hubin, "Adaptive optics with four laser guide stars: correction of the cone effect in large telescopes," Appl. Opt. 41, 11-20 (2002)

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