4 August 2016 Fundamental gain in high-contrast imaging with the large binocular telescope interferometer
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Abstract
Numerical simulations for the Large Binocular Telescope Interferometer have shown a fundamental gain in contrast when using two 8m adaptive optics telescopes instead of one, assuming a high Strehl and a cophasing mode. The global gain is improved by a factor 2 in contrast by using the long exposures and by a factor of 10 in contrast by using the short exposures. Indeed, fringes are still present in the short exposure, contrary to the long exposure where the fringes are blurred. Thus, there is some gain in grouping some short exposures with high gain G. This makes the LBTI well suitable for the Angular Differential Imaging technique. A planet will be alternatively located in the dark fringes (G ≈ 10 to 100) and/or in the dark rings (G ≈ 4 to 20). A rotation of 15° is sufficient to pass through at least one gain zone. The LBTI can provide in the visible wavelengths not only high angular resolution (≈ 6:5mas at 750nm) and high sensitivity (by a factor 4), but also a gain in contrast (by a factor 10 to 100) compared to the stand-alone adaptive optics used on each LBT aperture.
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Fabien Patru, Simone Esposito, Alfio Puglisi, Armando Riccardi, Enrico Pinna, Carmelo Arcidiacono, John Hill, Philip Hinz, "Fundamental gain in high-contrast imaging with the large binocular telescope interferometer", Proc. SPIE 9907, Optical and Infrared Interferometry and Imaging V, 99071S (4 August 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2232061; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2232061
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