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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Glenn D. Boreman
  • Vol. 44, Iss. 28 — Oct. 1, 2005
  • pp: 5859–5871

Imaging properties of rotating nulling interferometers

Oliver P. Lay  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 44, Issue 28, pp. 5859-5871 (2005)

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Nulling interferometers combine on-axis suppression with high angular resolution, making them ideal instruments for the direct detection of faint planets close to their parent star. The synthesized point-spread function for a rotating nulling interferometer utilizing phase chopping is shown to consist of a main peak, satellite peaks, and their associated sidelobes, and simple analytic expressions are derived for the modulation efficiency and angular resolution. Sufficient angular resolution is vital for the detection and characterization of multiple-planet systems and requires that some configurations be substantially larger than previously thought. The corresponding increase in stellar leakage has a major effect on performance and can be a deciding factor in the choice of array configuration.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.5100) Imaging systems : Phased-array imaging systems
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(350.1260) Other areas of optics : Astronomical optics

ToC Category:
Imaging Systems

Original Manuscript: February 25, 2005
Revised Manuscript: April 29, 2005
Manuscript Accepted: May 4, 2005
Published: October 1, 2005

Oliver P. Lay, "Imaging properties of rotating nulling interferometers," Appl. Opt. 44, 5859-5871 (2005)

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