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Proceedings Paper

The ZIMPOL high-contrast imaging polarimeter for SPHERE: design, manufacturing, and testing
Author(s): Ronald Roelfsema; Hans Martin Schmid; Johannes Pragt; Daniel Gisler; Rens Waters; Andreas Bazzon; Andrea Baruffolo; Jean-Luc Beuzit; Anthony Boccaletti; Julien Charton; Claudio Cumani; Kjetil Dohlen; Mark Downing; Eddy Elswijk; Markus Feldt; Charlotte Groothuis; Menno de Haan; Hiddo Hanenburg; Norbert Hubin; Franco Joos; Markus Kasper; Christoph Keller; Jan Kragt; Jean-Louis Lizon; David Mouillet; Aleksej Pavlov; Florence Rigal; Sylvain Rochat; Bernardo Salasnich; Peter Steiner; Christian Thalmann; Lars Venema; François Wildi
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Paper Abstract

ZIMPOL is the high contrast imaging polarimeter subsystem of the ESO SPHERE instrument. ZIMPOL is dedicated to detect the very faint reflected and hence polarized visible light from extrasolar planets. ZIMPOL is located behind an extreme AO system (SAXO) and a stellar coronagraph. SPHERE is foreseen to have first light at the VLT at the end of 2011. ZIMPOL is currently in the manufacturing, integration and testing phase. We describe the optical, polarimetric, mechanical, thermal and electronic design as well as the design trade offs. Specifically emphasized is the optical quality of the key performance component: the Ferro-electric Liquid Crystal polarization modulator (FLC). Furthermore, we describe the ZIMPOL test setup and the first test results on the achieved polarimetric sensitivity and accuracy. These results will give first indications for the expected overall high contrast system performance. SPHERE is an instrument designed and built by a consortium consisting of LAOG, MPIA, LAM, LESIA, Fizeau, INAF, Observatoire de Genève, ETH, NOVA, ONERA and ASTRON in collaboration with ESO.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 July 2010
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 7735, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy III, 77354B (20 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.857045
Show Author Affiliations
Ronald Roelfsema, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Hans Martin Schmid, ETH Zürich (Switzerland)
Johannes Pragt, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Daniel Gisler, ETH Zürich (Switzerland)
Rens Waters, Astronomical Institute Anton Pannekoek (Netherlands)
Andreas Bazzon, ETH Zürich (Switzerland)
Andrea Baruffolo, INAF, Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova (Italy)
Jean-Luc Beuzit, Lab. d'Astrophysique de l'Observatoire de Grenoble (France)
Anthony Boccaletti, LESIA, Observatoire de Paris-Meudon (France)
Julien Charton, Lab. d'Astrophysique de l'Observatoire de Grenoble (France)
Claudio Cumani, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Kjetil Dohlen, Lab. d'Astrophysique de Marseille, CNRS, Univ. de Provence (France)
Mark Downing, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Eddy Elswijk, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Markus Feldt, Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie (Germany)
Charlotte Groothuis, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Menno de Haan, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Hiddo Hanenburg, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Norbert Hubin, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Franco Joos, ETH Zürich (Switzerland)
Markus Kasper, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Christoph Keller, Sterrenkundig Instituut Utrecht (Netherlands)
Jan Kragt, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Jean-Louis Lizon, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
David Mouillet, Lab. d'Astrophysique de l'Observatoire de Grenoble (France)
Aleksej Pavlov, Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie (Germany)
Florence Rigal, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
Sylvain Rochat, Lab. d'Astrophysique de l'Observatoire de Grenoble (France)
Bernardo Salasnich, INAF, Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova (Italy)
Peter Steiner, ETH Zürich (Switzerland)
Christian Thalmann, ETH Zürich (Germany)
Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie (Germany)
Lars Venema, NOVA-ASTRON (Netherlands)
François Wildi, Observatoire Astronomique de l'Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7735:
Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy III
Ian S. McLean; Suzanne K. Ramsay; Hideki Takami, Editor(s)

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