12 October 2004 High-contrast imaging testbed for the Terrestrial Planet Finder coronagraph
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Abstract
The Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) mission is planning to launch a visible coronagraphic space telescope in 2014. To achieve TPF science goals, the coronagraph must have extreme levels of wavefront correction (less than 1 Å rms over controllable spatial frequencies) and stability to get the necessary suppression of diffracted starlight (~1E-10 contrast at an angular separation ~4 lambda/D). TPF Coronagraph’s primary platform for experimentation is the High Contrast Imaging Testbed, which will provide laboratory validation of key technologies as well as demonstration of a flight-traceable approach to implementation. Precision wavefront control in the testbed is provided by a high actuator density deformable mirror. Diffracted light control is achieved through use of occulting or apodizing masks and stops. Contrast measurements will establish the technical feasibility of TPF requirements, while model and error budget validation will demonstrate implementation viability. This paper describes the current testbed design, development approach, and recent experimental results.
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Andrew E. Lowman, Andrew E. Lowman, John T. Trauger, John T. Trauger, Brian Gordon, Brian Gordon, Joseph Jacob Green, Joseph Jacob Green, Dwight Moody, Dwight Moody, Albert F. Niessner, Albert F. Niessner, Fang Shi, Fang Shi, } "High-contrast imaging testbed for the Terrestrial Planet Finder coronagraph", Proc. SPIE 5487, Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Space Telescopes, (12 October 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.547710; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.547710
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