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Proceedings Paper

Improved correlation determination for intensity interferometers
Author(s): Patrick J. McNicholl; Phan D. Dao
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Paper Abstract

To image astronomical objects, the Hanbury Brown Twiss (HBT) technique involves measuring intensity correlation for an array of telescopes. The correlation of the intensity fluctuations is a measure of the magnitude of the coherence and can be used to retrieve the intensity distribution of the source using the Van Cittert-Zernike theorem. For low spectral irradiance sources, coincidence counting using modern techniques can drastically reduce data storage/processing requirements as well as allowing for optimization of the effective SNR bandwidth. In counting Intensity Interferometry (II), count fluctuations are measured instead of intensity fluctuations as with an analog II. Those are the two II techniques currently reported in the literature. Since the successful width measurements of bright stars by HBT in the 70's, advances in detectors promise opportunities to apply II to dimmer non-point source objects. To improve SNRs, we propose a new data processing technique for measuring correlation in the low light regime that ensures maximum bandwidth allowed by the reproducibility of photon pulses.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 May 2011
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 8033, Advanced Photon Counting Techniques V, 803313 (13 May 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.883405
Show Author Affiliations
Patrick J. McNicholl, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Phan D. Dao, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8033:
Advanced Photon Counting Techniques V
Mark A. Itzler; Joe C. Campbell, Editor(s)

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