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Proceedings Paper

Design and results of the fast timing photo-polarimeter OPTIMA
Author(s): Gottfried Kanbach; Stefan Kellner; Fritz Z. Schrey; Helmut Steinle; Christian Straubmeier; Henk C. Spruit
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Paper Abstract

A high-speed photometer, "OPTIMA" short for Optical Pulsar Timing Analyzer, has been designed as a sensitive, portable detector to observe optical pulsars and other highly variable sources. The detector contains eight fiber fed avalanche photodiode single photon counters, a GPS timing receiver, a CCD camera for target acquisition and a computerized control unit. The central fibers are configured as a hexagonal bundle around the target fiber, while one fiber is located at a distance of ~1' as a monitor for the night sky background. Recently a rotating polarization filter and a 4-color prism spectrograph have been added to the system as optional equipment. Since January 1999 OPTIMA has been used on different telescopes to measure detailed lightcurves and polarization of the Crab Pulsar, in a search for optical emission from the Geminga pulsar, and for the timing of cataclysmic variables and X-ray transients.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 March 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4841, Instrument Design and Performance for Optical/Infrared Ground-based Telescopes, (7 March 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.460323
Show Author Affiliations
Gottfried Kanbach, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Stefan Kellner, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Fritz Z. Schrey, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Helmut Steinle, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Christian Straubmeier, Univ. zu Koeln (Germany)
Henk C. Spruit, Max-Planck-Institut fur Astrophysik (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4841:
Instrument Design and Performance for Optical/Infrared Ground-based Telescopes
Masanori Iye; Alan F. M. Moorwood, Editor(s)

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