19 July 2010 The Vector Vortex Coronagraph: sensitivity to central obscuration, low-order aberrations, chromaticism, and polarization
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Abstract
The Vector Vortex Coronagraph is a phase-based coronagraph, one of the most efficient in terms of inner working angle, throughput, discovery space, contrast, and simplicity. Using liquid-crystal polymer technology, this new coronagraph has recently been the subject of lab demonstrations in the near-infrared, visible and was also used on sky at the Palomar observatory in the H and K bands (1.65 and 2.2 μm, respectively) to image the brown dwarf companion to HR 7672, and the three extra-solar planets around HR 8799. However, despite these recent successes, the Vector Vortex Coronagraph is, as are most coronagraphs, sensitive to the central obscuration and secondary support structures, low-order aberrations (tip-tilt, focus, etc), bandwidth (chromaticism), and polarization when image-plane wavefront sensing is performed. Here, we consider in detail these sensitivities as a function of the topological charge of the vortex and design features inherent to the manufacturing technology, and show that in practice all of them can be mitigated to meet specific needs.
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Dimitri Mawet, Laurent Pueyo, Dwight Moody, John Krist, Eugene Serabyn, "The Vector Vortex Coronagraph: sensitivity to central obscuration, low-order aberrations, chromaticism, and polarization", Proc. SPIE 7739, Modern Technologies in Space- and Ground-based Telescopes and Instrumentation, 773914 (19 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.858240; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.858240
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