## Abstract

A scheme to optimally design a beam combiner is discussed for any predetermined fixed geometry nulling interferometer aimed at detection and characterization of exoplanets with multiple telescopes or a single telescope (aperture masking).We show that considerably higher order nulls can be achieved with 1D (one-dimensional) interferometer geometries than possible with 2D (two-dimensional) geometries with the same number of apertures. Any 1D interferometer with N apertures can achieve a 2{eth}N 1{Thorn}-order null, while the order of the deepest null for a random 2D aperture geometry interferometer is the order of the Nth term in the Taylor expansion of e^{i(x2+y2)} around x = 0, y = 0 (2nd order null for N = 2; 3; 4th order null for N = 4; 5; 6).We also show that an optimal beam combiner for nulling interferometry relies on only 0 or π phase shifts. Examples of nulling interferometer designs are shown to illustrate these findings.

Original language | English (US) |
---|---|

Pages (from-to) | 951-965 |

Number of pages | 15 |

Journal | Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific |

Volume | 125 |

Issue number | 930 |

DOIs | |

State | Published - Aug 2013 |

## ASJC Scopus subject areas

- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science