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Proceedings Paper

Optical verification of occulter-based high contrast imaging
Author(s): Dan Sirbu; Eric J. Cady; N. Jeremy Kasdin; Robert J. Vanderbei; Jianxiao Lu; Emmeline Kao
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Paper Abstract

An external occulter precisely flown in formation with a space telescope has been recently studied as a mission scenario for direct imaging of exoplanets. 10-10 contrast must be attained to permit imaging of the faint reflected light of an Earth-like exoplanet. Here we report on experimental verification of a scaled occulter design that maintains a constant Fresnel number to an equivalent 400 mas space mission in monochromatic light at 632 nm using a diverging beam and an outer mask to suspend the occulter mask. We report contrast in regions of the discovery zone at 4.71 × 10-10 and suppression in the pupil plane of 3.7 × 10-7.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 September 2011
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 8151, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets V, 815114 (15 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.894213
Show Author Affiliations
Dan Sirbu, Princeton Univ. (United States)
Eric J. Cady, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
N. Jeremy Kasdin, Princeton Univ. (United States)
Robert J. Vanderbei, Princeton Univ. (United States)
Jianxiao Lu, Princeton Univ. (United States)
Emmeline Kao, Princeton Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8151:
Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets V
Stuart Shaklan, Editor(s)

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