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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. 25, Iss. 3 — Mar. 1, 2008
  • pp: 631–642

Signal-to-noise ratio of phase sensing telescope interferometers

François Hénault  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 25, Issue 3, pp. 631-642 (2008)

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The paper described is the third part of a trilogy dealing with the principles, performance, and limitations of what the author named “telescope–interferometers” (TIs). The basic idea consists in transforming one telescope into a wavefront error (WFE) sensing device. This can be achieved in two different ways, namely, off-axis and phase-shifting TIs. In both cases the point-spread function measured in the focal plane of the telescope carries information about the transmitted WFE, which is retrieved by fast and simple algorithms suitable to an adaptive optics (AO) regime. The uncertainties of both types of TIs are evaluated in terms of noise and systematic errors. Numerical models are developed to establish the dependence of driving parameters such as useful spectral range, angular size of the observed star, or detector noise on the total WFE measurement error. The latter is found particularly sensitive to photon noise, which rapidly governs the achieved accuracy for telescope diameters higher than 10 m . A few practical examples are studied, showing that the TI method is applicable to AO systems for telescope diameters ranging from 10 to 50 m , depending on seeing conditions and magnitude of the observed stars. Also discussed is the case of a space-borne coronagraph, where the TI technique provides high sampling of the input WFE map.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.7350) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Wave-front sensing
(070.2580) Fourier optics and signal processing : Paraxial wave optics
(100.5070) Image processing : Phase retrieval
(110.5100) Imaging systems : Phased-array imaging systems
(110.6770) Imaging systems : Telescopes

ToC Category:
Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

Original Manuscript: July 26, 2007
Revised Manuscript: November 20, 2007
Manuscript Accepted: January 7, 2008
Published: February 11, 2008

François Hénault, "Signal-to-noise ratio of phase sensing telescope interferometers," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 25, 631-642 (2008)

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