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Proceedings Paper

The image quality of the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT)
Author(s): Darragh E. O'Donoghue; Eli Atad-Ettedgui; Luis Balona; Bruce C. Bigelow; John A. Booth; Lucian Botha; Janus D. Brink; David A. H. Buckley; Phil Charles; Alrin Christians; J. Christopher Clemens; Lisa A. Crause; Steven M. Crawford; Geoffrey P. Evans; Hitesh Gajjar; Yas Hashimoto; Malcolm Hendricks; Alexei Kniazev; Anthony R. Koeslag; Willie P. Koorts; Herman J. Kriel; Nicola S. Loaring; Jonathan Love; Fred Marang; Douglas Metcalfe; Brennan Meyer; James O'Connor; Charl A. du Plessis; Lawrence W. Ramsey; Encarni Romero-Colmenero; Craig Sass; Johann C. Scholtz; Ramotholo Sefako; Sandisa Siyengo; Martin Still; Ockert J. Strydom; Arkadiusz Swat; Johann F. Du Toit; Petri Vaisanen; Martyn Wells; Hannah Worters
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Paper Abstract

Construction of the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) was largely completed by the end of 2005 and since then it has been in intensive commissioning. This has now almost been completed except for the telescope's image quality which shows optical aberrations, chiefly a focus gradient across the focal plane, along with astigmatism and other less significant aberrations. This paper describes the optical systems engineering investigation that has been conducted since early 2006 to diagnose the problem. A rigorous approach has been followed which has entailed breaking down the system into the major sub-systems and subjecting them to testing on an individual basis. Significant progress has been achieved with many components of the optical system shown to be operating correctly. The fault has been isolated to a major optical sub-system. We present the results obtained so far, and discuss what remains to be done.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 July 2008
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 7018, Advanced Optical and Mechanical Technologies in Telescopes and Instrumentation, 701813 (23 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.788841
Show Author Affiliations
Darragh E. O'Donoghue, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Eli Atad-Ettedgui, UK Astronomical Technology Ctr., The Royal Observatory Edinburgh (United Kingdom)
Luis Balona, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Bruce C. Bigelow, Univ. of Michigan (United States)
John A. Booth, McDonald Observatory, Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Lucian Botha, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Janus D. Brink, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
David A. H. Buckley, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Phil Charles, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Alrin Christians, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
J. Christopher Clemens, Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (United States)
Lisa A. Crause, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Steven M. Crawford, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Geoffrey P. Evans, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Hitesh Gajjar, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Yas Hashimoto, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Malcolm Hendricks, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Alexei Kniazev, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Anthony R. Koeslag, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Willie P. Koorts, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Herman J. Kriel, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Nicola S. Loaring, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Jonathan Love, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Fred Marang, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Douglas Metcalfe, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Brennan Meyer, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
James O'Connor, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Charl A. du Plessis, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Lawrence W. Ramsey, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Encarni Romero-Colmenero, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Craig Sass, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Johann C. Scholtz, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Ramotholo Sefako, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Sandisa Siyengo, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Martin Still, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Ockert J. Strydom, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Arkadiusz Swat, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Johann F. Du Toit, SunSpace (South Africa)
Petri Vaisanen, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Martyn Wells, UK Astronomical Technology Ctr., The Royal Observatory Edinburgh (United Kingdom)
Hannah Worters, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Ctr. for Astrophysics, Univ. of Central Lancashire (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7018:
Advanced Optical and Mechanical Technologies in Telescopes and Instrumentation
Eli Atad-Ettedgui; Dietrich Lemke, Editor(s)

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