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Proceedings Paper

ELT instrumentation for seeing-limited and AO-corrected observations: a comparison
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Paper Abstract

The next generation of large ground-based optical and infrared telescopes will provide new challenges for designers of astronomical instrumentation. The varied science cases for these extremely large telescopes (ELTs) require a large range of angular resolutions, from near diffraction-limited performance via correction of atmospheric turbulence using adaptive optics (AO), to seeing-limited observations. Moreover, the scientific output of the telescopes must also be optimized with the consideration that, with current technology, AO is relatively ineffective at visible wavelengths, and that atmospheric conditions will often preclude high-performance AO. This paper explores some of the issues that arise when designing ELT instrumentation that operates across a range of angular-resolutions and wavelengths. We show that instruments designed for seeing-limited or seeing-enhanced observations have particular challenges in terms of size and mass, while diffraction-limited instruments are not as straightforward as might be imagined.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 April 2008
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 6986, Extremely Large Telescopes: Which Wavelengths? Retirement Symposium for Arne Ardeberg, 69860K (22 April 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.801279
Show Author Affiliations
Colin Cunningham, UK Astronomy Technology Ctr. (United Kingdom)
Chris Evans, UK Astronomy Technology Ctr. (United Kingdom)
Guy Monnet, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Miska Le Louarn, European Southern Observatory (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6986:
Extremely Large Telescopes: Which Wavelengths? Retirement Symposium for Arne Ardeberg
Torben E. Andersen, Editor(s)

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