Diffraction-limited K-band imaging at the Multiple Mirror Telescope with adaptive optics

M. Lloyd-Hart, D. Colucci, D. Wittman, B. McLeod, A. Ghez, D. McCarthy, R. Dekany, R. Angel

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Low spatial frequencies of atmospheric turbulence are specially troublesome to astronomers because the phase distortions they cause have large amplitude. We have begun experiments at the Multiple Mirror Telescope (MMT) to remove these errors with tip, tilt, and piston control of pieces of the wave front defined by the telescope's six 1.8 m primary mirrors. We show long exposure images taken at the telescope with resolution as high as 0.08 arcsec under piston control, and 0.26 arcsec under tilt control, using an adaptive instrument designed to restore diffraction-limited imaging in the near infrared. We also present preliminary results from analysis of images of the pre-main sequence star T Tauri taken with tilt control of the six beams only, at three infrared wavelengths. The resolution is between 0.35 and 0.4 arcsec, higher than has previously been achieved with direct imaging. The faint red companion to T Tau is clearly revealed, and is seen to be undergoing an energetic outburst.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)338-347
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Aug 25 1993
EventActive and Adaptive Optical Components and Systems II 1993 - Albuquerque, United States
Duration: Feb 1 1993Feb 4 1993

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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