19 August 2009 The Gemini Planet Imager coronagraph testbed
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Abstract
The Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) is a new facility instrument to be commissioned at the 8-m Gemini South telescope in early 2011. It combines of several subsystems including a 1500 subaperture Extreme Adaptive Optics system, an Apodized Pupil Lyot Coronagraph, a near-infrared high-accuracy interferometric wavefront sensor, and an Integral Field Unit Spectrograph, which serves as the science instrument. GPI's main scientific goal is to detect and characterize relatively young (<2GYr), self luminous planets with planet-star brightness ratios of ≤ 10-7 in the near infrared. Here we present an overview of the coronagraph subsystem, which includes a pupil apodization, a hard-edged focal plane mask and a Lyot stop. We discuss designs optimization, masks fabrication and testing. We describe a near infrared testbed, which achieved broadband contrast (H-band) below 10-6 at separations > 5λ/D, without active wavefront control (no deformable mirror). We use Fresnel propagation modeling to analyze the testbed results.
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Rémi Soummer, Anand Sivaramakrishnan, Ben R. Oppenheimer, Robin Roberts, Douglas Brenner, Alexis Carlotti, Laurent Pueyo, Bruce Macintosh, Brian Bauman, Les Saddlemyer, David Palmer, Darren Erickson, Christophe Dorrer, Kris Caputa, Christian Marois, Kent Wallace, Emily Griffiths, Jacob Mey, "The Gemini Planet Imager coronagraph testbed", Proc. SPIE 7440, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV, 74400R (19 August 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.826700; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.826700
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