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Applied Optics

Applied Optics

APPLICATIONS-CENTERED RESEARCH IN OPTICS

  • Editor: James C. Wyant
  • Vol. 47, Iss. 3 — Jan. 20, 2008
  • pp: 422–430

Design and initial performance of SHARP, a polarimeter for the SHARC-II camera at the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory

H. Li, C. D. Dowell, L. Kirby, G. Novak, and J. E. Vaillancourt  »View Author Affiliations


Applied Optics, Vol. 47, Issue 3, pp. 422-430 (2008)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/AO.47.000422


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Abstract

We have developed a foreoptics module that converts the Submillimeter High Angular Resolution Camera generation II (SHARC-II) camera at the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory into a sensitive imaging polarimeter at wavelengths of 350 and 450 μ m . We refer to this module as “SHARP.” SHARP splits the incident radiation into two orthogonally polarized beams that are then reimaged onto opposite ends of the 32 × 12 pixel detector array in SHARC-II. A rotating half-wave plate is used just upstream from the polarization-splitting optics. The effect of SHARP is to convert SHARC-II into a dual-beam 12 × 12 pixel polarimeter. A novel feature of SHARP's design is the use of a crossed grid in a submillimeter polarimeter. Here we describe the detailed optical design of SHARP and present results of tests carried out during our first few observing runs. At 350 μ m , the beam size (9 arc sec), throughput (75%), and instrumental polarization ( < 1 % ) are all very close to our design goals.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.6770) Imaging systems : Telescopes
(350.1260) Other areas of optics : Astronomical optics
(350.1270) Other areas of optics : Astronomy and astrophysics

ToC Category:
Polarimetry

History
Original Manuscript: June 25, 2007
Revised Manuscript: October 29, 2007
Manuscript Accepted: October 31, 2007
Published: January 17, 2008

Citation
H. Li, C. D. Dowell, L. Kirby, G. Novak, and J. E. Vaillancourt, "Design and initial performance of SHARP, a polarimeter for the SHARC-II camera at the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory," Appl. Opt. 47, 422-430 (2008)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/abstract.cfm?URI=ao-47-3-422


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