Baranec, Christoph

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Prof. Christoph Baranec


Institute for Astronomy
Senior Member

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Area of Expertise: Adaptive Optics, Optical Engineering, Physical Optics, Exoplanets
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Summary
Christoph Baranec is an astronomer (B.S., Caltech, '01) and optical scientist (Ph. D., U. Arizona, '07) specializing in adaptive optics systems, components and techniques. Currently an assistant astronomer at the University of Hawai'i's Institute for Astronomy, he is bringing his expertise with adaptive optics to the telescopes of Mauna Kea. He previously led an international collaboration to build the world's first fully automated laser adaptive optics system, Robo-AO (http://robo-ao.org), and is currently using it to take high-resolution images of all the candidate exoplanet host stars identified by NASA’s Kepler mission. He was additionally on the development team for the world's first purpose built visible-light extreme adaptive optics system, PALM-3000 at Palomar Observatory, which was recently used to take simultaneous spectra of four extrasolar planets. He is additionally involved in upgrading the PALM-3000 system with a laser guide star to greatly expand the number of targets available for high-contrast imaging.
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