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Proceedings Paper

Status of the DKIST system for solar adaptive optics
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Paper Abstract

When the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST) achieves first light in 2019, it will deliver the highest spatial resolution images of the solar atmosphere ever recorded. Additionally, the DKIST will observe the Sun with unprecedented polarimetric sensitivity and spectral resolution, spurring a leap forward in our understanding of the physical processes occurring on the Sun.

The DKIST wavefront correction system will provide active alignment control and jitter compensation for all six of the DKIST science instruments. Five of the instruments will also be fed by a conventional adaptive optics (AO) system, which corrects for high frequency jitter and atmospheric wavefront disturbances. The AO system is built around an extended-source correlating Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor, a Physik Instrumente fast tip-tilt mirror (FTTM) and a Xinetics 1600-actuator deformable mirror (DM), which are controlled by an FPGA-based real-time system running at 1975 Hz. It is designed to achieve on-axis Strehl of 0.3 at 500 nm in median seeing (r0 = 7 cm) and Strehl of 0.6 at 630 nm in excellent seeing (r0 = 20 cm).

The DKIST wavefront correction team has completed the design phase and is well into the fabrication phase. The FTTM and DM have both been delivered to the DKIST laboratory in Boulder, CO. The real-time controller has been completed and is able to read out the camera and deliver commands to the DM with a total latency of approximately 750 μs. All optics and optomechanics, including many high-precision custom optics, mounts, and stages, are completed or nearing the end of the fabrication process and will soon undergo rigorous acceptance testing.

Before installing the wavefront correction system at the telescope, it will be assembled as a testbed in the laboratory. In the lab, performance tests beginning with component-level testing and continuing to full system testing will ensure that the wavefront correction system meets all performance requirements. Further work in the lab will focus on fine-tuning our alignment and calibration procedures so that installation and alignment on the summit will proceed as efficiently as possible.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 July 2016
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9909, Adaptive Optics Systems V, 99090Y (26 July 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2233528
Show Author Affiliations
Luke C. Johnson, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Keith Cummings, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Mark Drobilek, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Erik Johansson, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Jose Marino, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Kit Richards, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Thomas Rimmele, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Predrag Sekulic, National Solar Observatory (United States)
Friedrich Wöger, National Solar Observatory (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9909:
Adaptive Optics Systems V
Enrico Marchetti; Laird M. Close; Jean-Pierre Véran, Editor(s)

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