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Proceedings Paper

First light of the 6.5-m MMT adaptive optics system
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Paper Abstract

The adaptive optics system of the 6.5m MMT with its deformable secondary has seen first light on the sky in November 2002. Since then, it has logged over 30 nights at the telescope and has been used with several scientific cameras and a dedicated IR infrared camera. Results so far are extremely encouraging with Strehls of up to 20% in H-band and 98% in M limited in part by the control algorithm that is being improved. Reliability of the deformable secondary mirror (DM) has been remarkable with only one occurrence of a malfunction that required removing the secondary from its hub. In this paper, we review the milestones achieved and the performances obtained in the first year of operation. We will also address the operational constraints associated with the deformable secondary and the steps taken to relax these constraints. We show that despite its apparent complexity, an adaptive secondary AO system can be operated with modest effort from the telescope and AO staff.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 December 2003
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 5169, Astronomical Adaptive Optics Systems and Applications, (24 December 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.507687
Show Author Affiliations
Francois P. Wildi, Steward Observatory/Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Guido Brusa, Steward Observatory/Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Michael Lloyd-Hart, Steward Observatory/Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Laird Miller Close, Steward Observatory/Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Armando Riccardi, Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri/INAF (Italy)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5169:
Astronomical Adaptive Optics Systems and Applications
Robert K. Tyson; Michael Lloyd-Hart, Editor(s)

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