Demonstration of multi-star wavefront control using SCExAO

Eduardo Bendek, Dan Sirbu, Ruslan Belikov, Julien Lozi, Olivier Guyon, Eugene Pluzhnik, Thayne Currie

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


The science promised by high-contrast imaging missions will result in great leaps in our understanding of exoplanetary and the detection and spectral characterization of Earth-like planets in the habitable zone. However, none of these missions can image multi-star systems with current technology except when the leak and glare of the companion star(s) is negligible or small enough to be removed by post-processing. Therefore, many systems with multiple stars (or optical multiples) are often excluded from target lists of such missions. Our solution to binary star suppression is a wavefront control algorithm called Multi-Star Wavefront Control (MSWC). In general, any region of interest where we wish to detect planets contains a mix of speckles from both stars, which are mutually incoherent. When MSWC is used It is possible to null speckles from both stars if the region of interest is appropriately chosen, and non-redundant modes of the Deformable Mirror are used. Feasibility of MSWC was demonstrated in computer simulations and at the Ames Coronagraph Experiment Experiment laboratory. In this paper, we report the demonstration of MSWC using the Subaru Coronagraph Extreme Adaptive Optics (SCExAO) as part of our technology development effort. Our goal is to show that MSWC can achieve an order of magnitude better contrast on binary stars than conventional (i.e., single-star) techniques on binaries. Demonstrating this technique on SCExAO will validate MSWC on a real system (with a calibration source). Thus, proving that the technique can be applied on deployed instrumentation without major modifications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IX
EditorsStuart B. Shaklan
ISBN (Electronic)9781510629271
StatePublished - 2019
EventTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IX 2019 - San Diego, United States
Duration: Aug 12 2019Aug 15 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


ConferenceTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IX 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • Coronagraphs
  • Deformable Mirror
  • Exoplanet Imaging
  • Wavefront control

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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