High-frequency wavefront structure and its effects on the detection of faint companions using adaptive optics

Maud P. Langlois, David G. Sandler, Patrick T. Ryan, Donald W. McCarthy

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This paper looks at the detection limits using the new adaptive optics system on the 3.5m SOR telescope, reported by P. Ryan et al. at this conference. We discuss recent advances in our understating of the nature of high frequency wavefront structure. We analyze the various sources of high- frequency wavefront error, arising from residual adaptive optics errors, and other sources of scattered light. We characterize the AO system efficiency in the K band in terms of profile, noise level and noise time correlation. A sharp edge coronograph was used and it improved the performance as much as needed to detect brown dwarfs. Finally we give the exposure time required to detect such companions using the actual AO associated with the coronographic device, and we also point out what needs to be improved on the AO system as well as on the coronographic device in order to reach the level required for detecting exoplanets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-200
Number of pages12
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1998
EventAdaptive Optical System Technologies - Kona, HI, United States
Duration: Mar 23 1998Mar 23 1998


  • Adaptive optics
  • Companions
  • Coronograph
  • PSF
  • Scattered light

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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