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Proceedings Paper

Design of a white-light interferometric measuring system for co-phasing the primary mirror segments of the next generation of ground-based telescope
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Paper Abstract

With the increase of telescope size, the manufacture of monolithic primaries becomes increasingly difficult. Instead, the use of segmented mirrors, where many individual mirrors (the segments) work together to provide good image quality and an aperture equivalent to that of a large monolithic mirror, is considered a more appropriate strategy. But, with the introduction of large telescope mirror comprised of many individual segments, the problem of insuring a smooth continuous mirror surface (co-phased mirrors) becomes critical. One of the main problems arising in the co-phasing of the segmented mirrors telescope is the problem of measurements of the vertical displacements between the individual segments (piston errors). Because of such mirrors to exhibit diffraction-limited performance, a phasing process is required in order to guarantee that the segments have to be positioned with an accuracy of a fraction of a wavelength of the incoming light.The measurements become especially complicated when the piston error is in order of wavelength fractions. To meet the performance capabilities, a novel method for phasing the segmented mirrors optical system is described. The phasing method is based on a high-aperture Michelson interferometer. The use of an interferometric technique allows the measurement of segment misalignment during daytime with high accuracy, which is a major design guideline. The innovation introduced in the optical design of the interferometer is the simultaneous use of both monochromatic and white-light sources that allows the system to measure the piston error with an uncertainty of 6nm in 50µm range. The description about the expected monochromatic and white-light illumination interferograms and the feasibility of the phasing method are presented here.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 November 2007
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 6721, 3rd International Symposium on Advanced Optical Manufacturing and Testing Technologies: Large Mirrors and Telescopes, 67210D (21 November 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.782713
Show Author Affiliations
Helun Song, Institute of Optics and Electronics (China)
Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Sciences (China)
Hao Xian, Institute of Optics and Electronics (China)
Wenhan Jiang, Institute of Optics and Electronics (China)
Changhui Rao, Institute of Optics and Electronics (China)
Shengqian Wang, Institute of Optics and Electronics (China)
Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Sciences (China)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6721:
3rd International Symposium on Advanced Optical Manufacturing and Testing Technologies: Large Mirrors and Telescopes

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