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Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Editor: Stephen A. Burns
  • Vol. 24, Iss. 4 — Apr. 1, 2007
  • pp: 1042–1052

Optimum synthetic-aperture imaging of extended astronomical objects

Casper van der Avoort, Silvania F. Pereira, Joseph J. M. Braat, and Jan-Willem den Herder  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 24, Issue 4, pp. 1042-1052 (2007)

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In optical aperture-synthesis imaging of stellar objects, different beam combination strategies are used and proposed. Coaxial Michelson interferometers are very common and a homothetic multiaxial interferometer is recently realized in the Large Binocular Telescope. Laboratory experiments have demonstrated the working principles of two new approaches: densified pupil imaging and wide field-of-view (FOV) coaxial imaging using a staircase-shaped mirror. We develop a common mathematical formulation for direct comparison of the resolution and noise sensitivity of these four telescope configurations for combining beams from multiple apertures for interferometric synthetic aperture, wide-FOV imaging. Singular value decomposition techniques are used to compare the techniques and observe their distinct signal-to-noise ratio behaviors. We conclude that for a certain chosen stellar object, clear differences in performance of the imagers are identifiable.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.1650) Imaging systems : Coherence imaging
(110.4980) Imaging systems : Partial coherence in imaging
(110.5100) Imaging systems : Phased-array imaging systems
(110.6770) Imaging systems : Telescopes
(350.1260) Other areas of optics : Astronomical optics
(350.6090) Other areas of optics : Space optics

ToC Category:
Imaging Systems

Original Manuscript: April 12, 2006
Revised Manuscript: August 22, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: October 6, 2006
Published: March 14, 2007

Casper van der Avoort, Silvania F. Pereira, Joseph J. M. Braat, and Jan-Willem den Herder, "Optimum synthetic-aperture imaging of extended astronomical objects," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 24, 1042-1052 (2007)

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