BLINC: A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared

Philip M Hinz, J Roger P Angel, Nick Woolf, Bill Hoffmann, Donald W Mccarthy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A key technology in NASA's plans for a Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) is nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. This technique suppresses the overwhelming light from a star in order to study its immediate surroundings. To further develop nulling interferometry we have built the BracewelL Infrared Nulling Cryostat (BLINC). The instrument is designed to achieve high precision cancellation of an artificial source in the lab and of starlight on the telescope. Our goal is to achieve suppression of >10,000 both with a laser source and a broadband source over a 20% bandwidth. This is sufficient for ground-based observations with even short baseline interferometers since the finite diameter of the star does not allow suppression greater than that for most nearby sources. BLINC uses two parts of the MMT pupil to create an interferometer of 2.7 m diameter elements separated by 4 m. Active compensation for phase variations between the two apertures will be used to maintain the cancellation of the starlight in the presence of atmospheric turbulence. When combined with the adaptive secondary of the MMT to remove high order aberrations, BLINC will be able to achieve suppression of 10,000. This will allow detection of zodiacal dust around nearby stars as faint as 10 times the solar level and detection of companions large than 10 Jupiter masses for systems less than one billion years old. BLINC serves as a prototype for nulling with the Large Binocular Telescope which will be able to see zodiacal dust as faint as solar level and Jupiter mass or larger companions. Thus both in technological and scientific background BLINC will help begin the search for Earth-like planets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
PublisherSociety of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers
Volume4006
StatePublished - 2000
EventInterferometry in Optical Astronomy - Munich, Ger
Duration: Mar 27 2000Mar 29 2000

Other

OtherInterferometry in Optical Astronomy
CityMunich, Ger
Period3/27/003/29/00

Fingerprint

Cryostats
cryostats
Testbeds
Interferometry
interferometry
Infrared radiation
zodiacal dust
Stars
retarding
Jupiter (planet)
stars
cancellation
Planets
Telescopes
Interferometers
interferometers
Dust
telescopes
terrestrial planets
atmospheric turbulence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Hinz, P. M., Angel, J. R. P., Woolf, N., Hoffmann, B., & Mccarthy, D. W. (2000). BLINC: A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering (Vol. 4006). Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.

BLINC : A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. / Hinz, Philip M; Angel, J Roger P; Woolf, Nick; Hoffmann, Bill; Mccarthy, Donald W.

Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 4006 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, 2000.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Hinz, PM, Angel, JRP, Woolf, N, Hoffmann, B & Mccarthy, DW 2000, BLINC: A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. in Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. vol. 4006, Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, Interferometry in Optical Astronomy, Munich, Ger, 3/27/00.
Hinz PM, Angel JRP, Woolf N, Hoffmann B, Mccarthy DW. BLINC: A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 4006. Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. 2000
Hinz, Philip M ; Angel, J Roger P ; Woolf, Nick ; Hoffmann, Bill ; Mccarthy, Donald W. / BLINC : A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 4006 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, 2000.
@inproceedings{18a87f5d791d4e60a170edf7adfc9d08,
title = "BLINC: A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared",
abstract = "A key technology in NASA's plans for a Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) is nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. This technique suppresses the overwhelming light from a star in order to study its immediate surroundings. To further develop nulling interferometry we have built the BracewelL Infrared Nulling Cryostat (BLINC). The instrument is designed to achieve high precision cancellation of an artificial source in the lab and of starlight on the telescope. Our goal is to achieve suppression of >10,000 both with a laser source and a broadband source over a 20{\%} bandwidth. This is sufficient for ground-based observations with even short baseline interferometers since the finite diameter of the star does not allow suppression greater than that for most nearby sources. BLINC uses two parts of the MMT pupil to create an interferometer of 2.7 m diameter elements separated by 4 m. Active compensation for phase variations between the two apertures will be used to maintain the cancellation of the starlight in the presence of atmospheric turbulence. When combined with the adaptive secondary of the MMT to remove high order aberrations, BLINC will be able to achieve suppression of 10,000. This will allow detection of zodiacal dust around nearby stars as faint as 10 times the solar level and detection of companions large than 10 Jupiter masses for systems less than one billion years old. BLINC serves as a prototype for nulling with the Large Binocular Telescope which will be able to see zodiacal dust as faint as solar level and Jupiter mass or larger companions. Thus both in technological and scientific background BLINC will help begin the search for Earth-like planets.",
author = "Hinz, {Philip M} and Angel, {J Roger P} and Nick Woolf and Bill Hoffmann and Mccarthy, {Donald W}",
year = "2000",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "4006",
booktitle = "Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering",
publisher = "Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers",

}

TY - GEN

T1 - BLINC

T2 - A testbed for nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared

AU - Hinz, Philip M

AU - Angel, J Roger P

AU - Woolf, Nick

AU - Hoffmann, Bill

AU - Mccarthy, Donald W

PY - 2000

Y1 - 2000

N2 - A key technology in NASA's plans for a Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) is nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. This technique suppresses the overwhelming light from a star in order to study its immediate surroundings. To further develop nulling interferometry we have built the BracewelL Infrared Nulling Cryostat (BLINC). The instrument is designed to achieve high precision cancellation of an artificial source in the lab and of starlight on the telescope. Our goal is to achieve suppression of >10,000 both with a laser source and a broadband source over a 20% bandwidth. This is sufficient for ground-based observations with even short baseline interferometers since the finite diameter of the star does not allow suppression greater than that for most nearby sources. BLINC uses two parts of the MMT pupil to create an interferometer of 2.7 m diameter elements separated by 4 m. Active compensation for phase variations between the two apertures will be used to maintain the cancellation of the starlight in the presence of atmospheric turbulence. When combined with the adaptive secondary of the MMT to remove high order aberrations, BLINC will be able to achieve suppression of 10,000. This will allow detection of zodiacal dust around nearby stars as faint as 10 times the solar level and detection of companions large than 10 Jupiter masses for systems less than one billion years old. BLINC serves as a prototype for nulling with the Large Binocular Telescope which will be able to see zodiacal dust as faint as solar level and Jupiter mass or larger companions. Thus both in technological and scientific background BLINC will help begin the search for Earth-like planets.

AB - A key technology in NASA's plans for a Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) is nulling interferometry in the thermal infrared. This technique suppresses the overwhelming light from a star in order to study its immediate surroundings. To further develop nulling interferometry we have built the BracewelL Infrared Nulling Cryostat (BLINC). The instrument is designed to achieve high precision cancellation of an artificial source in the lab and of starlight on the telescope. Our goal is to achieve suppression of >10,000 both with a laser source and a broadband source over a 20% bandwidth. This is sufficient for ground-based observations with even short baseline interferometers since the finite diameter of the star does not allow suppression greater than that for most nearby sources. BLINC uses two parts of the MMT pupil to create an interferometer of 2.7 m diameter elements separated by 4 m. Active compensation for phase variations between the two apertures will be used to maintain the cancellation of the starlight in the presence of atmospheric turbulence. When combined with the adaptive secondary of the MMT to remove high order aberrations, BLINC will be able to achieve suppression of 10,000. This will allow detection of zodiacal dust around nearby stars as faint as 10 times the solar level and detection of companions large than 10 Jupiter masses for systems less than one billion years old. BLINC serves as a prototype for nulling with the Large Binocular Telescope which will be able to see zodiacal dust as faint as solar level and Jupiter mass or larger companions. Thus both in technological and scientific background BLINC will help begin the search for Earth-like planets.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0033713889&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0033713889&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Conference contribution

AN - SCOPUS:0033713889

VL - 4006

BT - Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering

PB - Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers

ER -