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Proceedings Paper

Demonstration of multi-star wavefront control for WFIRST, Habex, and LUVOIR
Author(s): Dan Sirbu; Ruslan Belikov; Eduardo Bendek; Chris Henze; Eugene Pluzhnik
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Paper Abstract

Coronagraphic instruments will enable direct imaging of dim planetary companions around nearby stars. The majority of nearby FGK stars are located in multi-star systems, including the Alpha Centauri stars, which may represent the best quality targets available for spectroscopic characterization due to their proximity and brightness. However, a binary system exhibits additional leakage from the off-axis companion star that may be brighter than the target exoplanet. Multi-Star Wavefront Control (MSWC) is a wavefront-control technique that allows simultaneous suppression of starlight of both stars in a binary system. MSWC would thus enable direct imaging of circumstellar planets in binary star systems such as Alpha Centauri. MSWC is compatible with a wide suite of planned coronagraphic instruments for future space missions. As part of the technology demonstration efforts for MSWC, the first milestone results are presented here demonstrating (via computer simulations), high-contrast imaging capabilities of multi-star systems for several instruments including: [1] the upcoming WFIRST and its CGI demonstrator, [2] the HABitable Worlds EXplorer (Habex) mission concept, [3] the segmented Large UV/Optical/IR (LUVOIR) mission concept, and [4] a small-aperture Alpha Centauri direct-imager mission concept. For each of these missions, a baseline coronagraph option planned for the mission will be adopted and instrument baseline performance will be compared for single-star wavefront control.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 September 2019
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 11117, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IX, 1111719 (9 September 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2529622
Show Author Affiliations
Dan Sirbu, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Bay Area Environmental Research Institute (United States)
Ruslan Belikov, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Eduardo Bendek, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Chris Henze, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Eugene Pluzhnik, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Bay Area Environmental Research Institute (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11117:
Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IX
Stuart B. Shaklan, Editor(s)

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