Betelgeuse scope: Single-mode-fibers-assisted optical interferometer design for dedicated stellar activity monitoring

Narsireddy Anugu, Katie M. Morzinski, Josh Eisner, Ewan Douglas, Dan Marrone, Steve Ertel, Sebastiaan Haffert, Oscar Montoya, Jordan Stone, Stefan Kraus, John Monnier, Jean Baptiste Lebouquin, Jean Philippe Berger, Julien Woillez, Miguel Montargès

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Betelgeuse has gone through a sudden shift in its brightness and dimmed mysteriously. This is likely caused by a hot blob of plasma ejected from Betelgeuse and then cooled to obscuring dust. If true, it is a remarkable opportunity to directly witness the formation of dust around a red supergiant star. Today’s optical telescope facilities are not optimized for time-evolution monitoring of the Betelgeuse surface, so in this work, we propose a low-cost optical interferometer. The facility will consist of 12 × 4 inch optical telescopes mounted on the surface of a large radio dish for interferometric imaging; polarization-maintaining single-mode fibers will carry the coherent beams from the individual optical telescopes to an all-in-one beam combiner. A fast steering mirror assisted fiber injection system guides the flux into fibers. A metrology system senses vibration-induced piston errors in optical fibers, and these errors are corrected using fast-steering delay lines. We will present the design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalUnknown Journal
StatePublished - Oct 8 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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