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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: James C. Wyant
  • Vol. 46, Iss. 21 — Jul. 20, 2007
  • pp: 4754–4762

Method of estimating time scales of atmospheric piston and its application at Dome C (Antarctica)

A. Kellerer, M. Sarazin, T. Butterley, and R. Wilson  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 46, Issue 21, pp. 4754-4762 (2007)

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Temporal fluctuations of the atmospheric piston are critical for interferometers as they determine their sensitivity. We characterize an instrumental setup, termed the piston scope, that aims at measuring the atmospheric time constant, τ 0 , through the image motion in the focal plane of a Fizeau interferometer. High-resolution piston scope measurements have been obtained at the observatory of Paranal, Chile in April 2006. The derived atmospheric parameters are shown to be consistent with data from the astronomical site monitor, provided that the atmospheric turbulence is displaced along a single direction. The piston scope measurements of lower temporal and spatial resolution were recorded for what is believed to be the first time in February 2005 at the Antarctic site of Dome C. Their reanalysis in terms of the new data calibration sharpens the conclusions of a first qualitative examination [Appl. Opt. 45, 5709 (2006)].

© 2007 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.0010) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric and oceanic optics
(120.0120) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology

ToC Category:
Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

Original Manuscript: November 7, 2006
Revised Manuscript: February 27, 2007
Manuscript Accepted: March 2, 2007
Published: July 6, 2007

A. Kellerer, M. Sarazin, T. Butterley, and R. Wilson, "Method of estimating time scales of atmospheric piston and its application at Dome C (Antarctica)," Appl. Opt. 46, 4754-4762 (2007)

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  1. A. Kellerer and A. Tokovinin, "Atmospheric coherence time in interferometry: definition and measurement," Astron. Astrophys. 461, 775-781 (2007). [CrossRef]
  2. A. Kellerer, M. Sarazin, V. Coudé Du Foresto, K. Agabi, E. Aristidi, and T. Sadibekova, "A method of estimating time scales of atmospheric piston and its application at Dome C (Antarctica)," Appl. Opt. 45, 5709-5715 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
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  7. European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, http://www.ecmwf.int/.
  8. J. Lawrence, M. Ashley, A. Tokovinin, and T. Travouillon, "Exceptional astronomical seeing conditions above Dome C in Antarctica," Nature 431, 278-281 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. A. Tokovinin, National Optical Astronomy Observatory: MASS presentation, http://www.ctio.noao.edu/∼atokovin/profiler/(2006).

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