4 August 2016 Use of a photonic lantern into an image plane fiber beam combiner
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Abstract
We investigate the use of photonic lanterns in a fibre beam-combiner. One of the problems of fibre combiners is that the single-mode fibres coupling is affected by the atmospheric seeing. This effect could be potentially mitigated using a "photonic lantern". A photonic lantern converts the multi-mode input at the focal plane of a telescope to N single mode outputs. In presence of atmospheric seeing the light of the telescope will couple with one or more of the single-mode outputs unlike the current interferometers where coupling can be sporadic in bad seeing conditions. In a stellar interferometer each telescope focal plane could be coupled with a photonic lantern. After beam combination each single-mode outputs of the lantern will interfere with all the others. N single mode outputs from each lantern will make N non independent closure phases that can be averaged. Using this method the noise on the closure phase on independent baseline triangles could in principle be reduced by the square root of N.
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Ettore Pedretti, Alan H. Greenaway, Robert R. Thomson, Paul A. Dalgarno, "Use of a photonic lantern into an image plane fiber beam combiner", Proc. SPIE 9907, Optical and Infrared Interferometry and Imaging V, 990735 (4 August 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2232542; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2232542
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