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Proceedings Paper

Site testing for visible astronomy
Author(s): Jean Vernin
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Paper Abstract

Here we describe the general guidelines for astronomical site testing in the visible range. We recall the main parameters which drives and orientates a site characterization among other parameters of less importance. One needs to select a site from which the stars are visible as much time as possible, with the best transparency and allowing the best angular resolution. We recall that, in order to appear, the optical turbulence requires a medium where simultaneously a vertical gradient of the refractive index and a vertical gradient of the horizontal wind speed are present. If one of these conditions is not fulfilled, no optical turbulence will disturb the light propagation. Few exemples are detailed, and few clues are given to orient the choice of a site throughout the infinite possibilities in the world. A special thank is given to A. Ardeberg for his major contribution in telescope environment leading to minimize dome and mirror seeing, which has been implemented in the Nordic Optical Telescope and then inspired the next generation of very large telescopes.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 April 2008
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 6986, Extremely Large Telescopes: Which Wavelengths? Retirement Symposium for Arne Ardeberg, 69860E (22 April 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.801267
Show Author Affiliations
Jean Vernin, Univ. de Nice-Sophia Antipolis (France)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6986:
Extremely Large Telescopes: Which Wavelengths? Retirement Symposium for Arne Ardeberg

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