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Proceedings Paper

Study of coronagraphic techniques
Author(s): Volker Tolls; Michael Aziz; Robert A. Gonsalves; Sylvain Korzennik; Antoine Labeyrie; Richard Lyon; Gary Melnick; Ruth Schlitz; Steve Somerstein; Gopal Vasudevan; Robert Woodruff
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Paper Abstract

Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) has set up a program to study coronagraphic techniques. The program consists of the development of new fabrication methods of occulter masks, characterization of the manufactured masks, and application of the masks to study speckle reduction technique. Our occulter mask fabrication development utilizes a focused ion beam system to directly shape mask profiles from absorber material. Initial milling trials show that we can shape nearly Gaussian-shaped mask profiles. Part of this development is the characterization of absorber materials, poly(methyl methacrylate) doped with light-stable chromophores. For the characterization of the masks we have built a mask scanner enabling us to scan the transmission function of occulter masks. The real mask transmission profile is retrieved applying the maximum entropy method to deconvolve the mask transmission function from the beam profile of the test laser. Finally, our test bed for studying coronagraphic techniques is nearing completion. The optical setup is currently configured as a classical coronagraph and can easily be re-configured for studying speckle reduction techniques. The development of the test bed control software is under way. This paper we will give an update of the status of the individual program elements.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 June 2006
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 6265, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation I: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter, 62653K (15 June 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.672647
Show Author Affiliations
Volker Tolls, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Michael Aziz, Harvard Univ. (United States)
Robert A. Gonsalves, Tufts Univ. (United States)
Sylvain Korzennik, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Antoine Labeyrie, Observatoire de Haute-Provence (France)
Richard Lyon, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Gary Melnick, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Ruth Schlitz, Harvard Univ. (United States)
Steve Somerstein, Lockheed-Martin Corp. (United States)
Gopal Vasudevan, Lockheed-Martin Corp. (United States)
Robert Woodruff, Lockheed-Martin Corp. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6265:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation I: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter
John C. Mather; Howard A. MacEwen; Mattheus W. M. de Graauw, Editor(s)

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