First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames

Ruslan Belikov, Eugene Pluzhnik, Michael S. Connelley, Fred C. Witteborn, Dana H. Lynch, Kerri L. Cahoy, Olivier Guyon, Thomas P. Greene, Mark E. McKelvey

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

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Direct imaging of extrasolar planets, and Earth-like planets in particular, is an exciting but difficult problem requiring a telescope imaging system with 1010 contrast at separations of 100mas and less. Furthermore, the current NASA science budget may only allow for a small 1-2m space telescope for this task, which puts strong demands on the performance of the imaging instrument. Fortunately, an efficient coronagraph called the Phase Induced Amplitude Apodization (PIAA) coronagraph has been maturing and may enable Earth-like planet imaging for such small telescopes. In this paper, we report on the latest results from a new testbed at NASA Ames focused on testing the PIAA coronagraph. This laboratory facility was built in 2008 and is designed to be flexible, operated in a highly stabilized air environment, and to complement existing efforts at NASA JPL. For our wavefront control we are focusing on using small Micro-Electro- Mechanical-System deformable mirrors (MEMS DMs), which promises to reduce the size of the beam and overall instrument, a consideration that becomes very important for small telescopes. At time of this writing, we are operating a refractive PIAA system and have achieved contrasts of about 1.2x10-7 in a dark zone from 2.0 to 4.8 λ/D (with 6.6x10 -8 in selected regions). In this paper, we present these results, describe our methods, present an analysis of current limiting factors, and solutions to overcome them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume7440
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
EventTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 4 2009Aug 5 2009

Other

OtherTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV
CountryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA
Period8/4/098/5/09

Fingerprint

Coronagraph
apodization
coronagraphs
NASA
Testbeds
Telescopes
Testbed
Telescope
Imaging
telescopes
Planets
Imaging techniques
Earth (planet)
Extrasolar planets
Extrasolar Planets
Space Telescope
Space telescopes
Deformable Mirror
Wavefronts
Micro-electro-mechanical Systems

Keywords

  • coronagraph
  • extrasolar planets
  • high contrast
  • PIAA
  • wavefront correction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Mathematics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Belikov, R., Pluzhnik, E., Connelley, M. S., Witteborn, F. C., Lynch, D. H., Cahoy, K. L., ... McKelvey, M. E. (2009). First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering (Vol. 7440). [74400J] https://doi.org/10.1117/12.826772

First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames. / Belikov, Ruslan; Pluzhnik, Eugene; Connelley, Michael S.; Witteborn, Fred C.; Lynch, Dana H.; Cahoy, Kerri L.; Guyon, Olivier; Greene, Thomas P.; McKelvey, Mark E.

Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 7440 2009. 74400J.

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

Belikov, R, Pluzhnik, E, Connelley, MS, Witteborn, FC, Lynch, DH, Cahoy, KL, Guyon, O, Greene, TP & McKelvey, ME 2009, First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames. in Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. vol. 7440, 74400J, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV, San Diego, CA, United States, 8/4/09. https://doi.org/10.1117/12.826772
Belikov R, Pluzhnik E, Connelley MS, Witteborn FC, Lynch DH, Cahoy KL et al. First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 7440. 2009. 74400J https://doi.org/10.1117/12.826772
Belikov, Ruslan ; Pluzhnik, Eugene ; Connelley, Michael S. ; Witteborn, Fred C. ; Lynch, Dana H. ; Cahoy, Kerri L. ; Guyon, Olivier ; Greene, Thomas P. ; McKelvey, Mark E. / First results on a new PIAA coronagraph testbed at NASA Ames. Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering. Vol. 7440 2009.
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