Diffraction-limited upgrade to ARGOS, the LBT's ground-layer adaptive optics system

Michael Hart, Lorenzo Busoni, Oil Durney, Simone Esposito, Wolfgang Gässler, Victor Gasho, Sebastian Rabien, Matt Rademacher

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

6 Scopus citations


The Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) is now operating with the first of two permanently installed adaptive secondary mirrors, and the first of two complementary near-IR instruments called LUCIFER is operational as well. The ARGOS laser-guided ground-layer adaptive optics (GLAO) system, described elsewhere at this conference1, will build on this foundation to deliver the highest resolution over the 4 arc min wide-field imaging and multi-object spectroscopic modes of LUCIFER. In this paper, we describe a planned upgrade to ARGOS which will supplement the Rayleigh-based GLAO system with sodium laser guide stars (LGS) to fulfill the telescope's diffraction-limited potential. In its narrow-field mode of 30 arc sec, LUCIFER will deliver imaging at the Nyquist limit of the individual 8.4 m apertures down to J band and long-slit spectroscopy with resolution up to 40,000. In addition, the LBT Interferometer2 (LBTI) will cophase the two apertures, offering imaging at the diffraction limit of the 22.8 m baseline at wavelengths from 1.2 to 20 μm. In the first phase of the upgrade, a 10 W sodium LGS will be added to each half of the LBT, using the same launch telescopes mounted behind the two secondary mirrors as the Rayleigh LGS. The upgrade will rely on other components of the ARGOS infrastructure such as acquisition and guiding, and fast tip-tilt cameras. New wavefront sensors will be added to LUCIFER and LBTI. In the upgrade's second phase, the sodium and Rayleigh LGS will be used together in a hybrid tomographic sensing system. This configuration will offer the advantage that a single tip-tilt star will continue to be sufficient even for MCAO operation3, which is planned with LBT's LINC-NIRVANA instrument4'5.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdaptive Optics Systems II
EditionPART 1
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventAdaptive Optics Systems II - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Jun 27 2010Jul 2 2010

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
NumberPART 1
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherAdaptive Optics Systems II
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • Adaptive optics
  • Laser guide stars
  • Telescopes

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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