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Proceedings Paper

ExoPlanet Optics: conceptual design processes for stealth telescopes
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Paper Abstract

In this paper we examine several contrast-degrading static signature sources present in current terrestrial exoplanet Lyot Coronagraph/Telescope optical systems. These are: - Unnecessary optical surfaces, which increase cost, absorption, scatter, wavefront control and alignment issues. A suggested solution is to make every effort to investigate innovative solutions to reduce the number of optical surfaces during the early design phase. Consider free-form optics. - Diffraction from secondary support systems and classical hexagon segmented apertures, which masks the low IWA terrestrial exoplanets. A suggested mitigation is to investigate curved secondary support systems and a pinwheel architecture for the deployable primary aperture. - Polarization Fresnel and form birefringence aberrations, which distort the system PSF, introduce absorption, scatter and wavefront control issues. Mitigation is to reduce all ray-angles of incidence to a minimum, investigate zero-loss polarization compensation wavefront technology, and investigate metal thin film deposition processes required to minimize form birefringence in large-area high-reflectivity coatings. - Small-angle specular or resolved angle scattered light, which places a narrow halo of incoherent light around the base of the PSF. There is no requirement on mirror smooth-surface scatter. Investigate the physical source of the small angle scatter and develop mirror polishing and thin film deposition processes to minimize scatter.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 September 2019
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 11115, UV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts IX, 111150H (9 September 2019);
Show Author Affiliations
J. B. Breckinridge, Caltech (United States)
James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences (United States)
J. E. Harvey, Photon Engineering LLC (United States)
R. Irvin, Photon Engineering LLC (United States)
R. Chipman, James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences (United States)
M. Kupinski, James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences (United States)
J. Davis, James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences (United States)
D-W. Kim, James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences (United States)
E. Douglas, The Univ. of Arizona (United States)
C. F. Lillie, Lillie Consulting, LLC (United States)
T. Hull, The Univ. of New Mexico (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11115:
UV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts IX
Allison A. Barto; James B. Breckinridge; H. Philip Stahl, Editor(s)

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