Compact adaptive optics for demonstration and basic research
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Compact Adaptive Optics for Demonstration and Basic Research. Current needy groups: 1. Tour groups – basic principles/AO in action 2. Incoming CfAO researchers with little background in AO 3. Students in AO class/short courses/summer programs – possible hands-on projects

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Compact adaptive optics for demonstration and basic research l.jpg

Compact Adaptive Optics for Demonstration and Basic Research

Current needy groups:

1. Tour groups – basic principles/AO in action

2. Incoming CfAO researchers with little background in AO

3. Students in AO class/short courses/summer programs – possible hands-on projects

4. Research that requires only the bare, inexpensive necessities

5. Who else?

Tools available to the CfAO:

1. Vision systems (Eric Steinbring) – measure wavefront of eye

2. Tip/tilt correction system on 10” telescope (bad performance)

3. Less accessible systems at Livermore, UCSC Optics shops, and Rochester

4. What else? Where?


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AO Demonstrator – Key concepts

Inexpensive – (< $20k)

Compact and easily deployable

Cater to wide range of user experience and competence levels

Quick and dirty operation possible

Visible results, if necessary

Interactive (inquiry, possibly?)

Robust – operable under changing conditions and optical alignments

Modular – software can be changed easily, optics can be traded out


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AO Demonstrator – Current Status

An AO Demonstrator system is being constructed in the Laboratory for Adaptive Optics (LAO) in Thimann

Currently residing on a 2’ x 2’ optical breadboard – can be placed on a cart

Parts are from image-sharpening Intellite system ($15k) – Deformable mirror, desktop computer, voltage drivers, and camera

System has been converted to Shack-Hartmann with purchased components (lenslet array, lenses, input laser, optical mounts, etc.)

Currently writing graphical user interface for Shack-Hartmann system


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DM

Laser

AO Demonstrator – Optical Layout

Beamsplitter

Lenlet Array

Camera

High voltage

drivers

Camera

Computer


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Levels of Interaction

Simple/facilitated – for tour groups. Abberate beam with glass or turbulence and observe corrected results.

Complex – for students. Change optical alignment and look for differences in observables like Strehl, bandwidth, etc. Compare Shack-Hartmann to Image sharpening.

Complete – for researchers or student projects. Change source code (Visual C++) or add different reconstructors besides pseudo-inverted influence matrices.


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Questions

I’m looking for suggestions about the graphical user interface:

1. What do tour groups want to see?

2. What types of projects are students looking for? What timescales?

3. What else is necessary?

Who else would be interested?

- Don Wiberg & Bing Xu are looking at changing the reconstructor and measuring Strehl

- Possible utility for supporting other LAO work (improving laser quality, quick & dirty tests)

How far from the CfAO can it travel?