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Proceedings Paper

Astronomical constraints of laser-beacon adaptive optics systems I: the tracking problem
Author(s): Edward J. Kibblewhite; Mark Richard Chun
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Paper Abstract

We present an analysis of the tracking error for a laser guide star adaptive optics system with a quadrant detector using the astronomical science target as the reference source. A simple formula relating the tracking error to the SNR and the image profile in the detector plane allows the tracking error for any object and system point spread function to be computed. These calculations show that many types of faint (20 magnitude) science target objects can be used to track provided a high Strehl is achieved at 2.3 micron. This eliminates the need for an off-axis guide star. As an example of a resolved target source, we calculate the tracking error for the spiral galaxy M31 placed at distances out to 100 Mpc. For a given target object spectral energy distribution, an optimal wavelength is obtained from a signal-to-noise calculation. For a given tracking wavelength, the limiting flux is determined by the adaptive optics system's Strehl ratio at the tracking wavelength.

Paper Details

Date Published: 31 May 1994
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 2201, Adaptive Optics in Astronomy, (31 May 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.176060
Show Author Affiliations
Edward J. Kibblewhite, Univ. of Chicago (United States)
Mark Richard Chun, Univ. of Chicago (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2201:
Adaptive Optics in Astronomy
Mark A. Ealey; Fritz Merkle, Editor(s)

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