A novel simultaneous differential imager for the direct imaging of giant planets

R. Lenzen, Lair Close, W. Brandner, B. Biller, M. Hartung

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


The Adaptive Optics System NACO at the VLT has been equipped with a Simultaneous Differential Imager (SDI) designed to provide direct imaging of giant extra-solar planets. Exploiting the fact that all cool (Teff < 1200K) extrasolar giant planets have strong CH4 (methane) absorption beyond 1.62 μm in the H band NIR atmospheric window, diffraction limited narrow-band images centred on this absorption edge are obtained with NACO simultaneously to reduce the speckle-noise floor and increase the sensitivity for Jupiter-like planets around nearby young stars. We present the technical realization of this device and first results obtained during the commissioning run.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)970-977
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Issue numberPART 2
StatePublished - 2004
EventGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: Jun 21 2004Jun 25 2004


  • Adaptive-Optics
  • Extra-solar planets
  • NACO
  • VLT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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