The JWST/NIRCam coronagraph: Mask design and fabrication

John E. Krist, Kunjithapatham Balasubramanian, Charles A. Beichman, Pierre M. Echternach, Joseph J. Green, Kurt M. Liewer, Richard E. Muller, Eugene Serabyn, Stuart B. Shaklan, John T. Trauger, Daniel W. Wilson, Scott D. Horner, Yalan Mao, Stephen F. Somerstein, Gopal Vasudevan, Douglas M. Kelly, Marcia J. Rieke

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

11 Scopus citations


The NIRCam instrument on the James Webb Space Telescope will provide coronagraphic imaging from λ =1-5 μm of high contrast sources such as extrasolar planets and circumstellar disks. A Lyot coronagraph with a variety of circular and wedge-shaped occulting masks and matching Lyot pupil stops will be implemented. The occulters approximate grayscale transmission profiles using halftone binary patterns comprising wavelength-sized metal dots on anti-reflection coated sapphire substrates. The mask patterns are being created in the Micro Devices Laboratory at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory using electron beam lithography. Samples of these occulters have been successfully evaluated in a coronagraphic testbed. In a separate process, the complex apertures that form the Lyot stops will be deposited onto optical wedges. The NIRCam coronagraph flight components are expected to be completed this year.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV
StatePublished - 2009
EventTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 4 2009Aug 5 2009

Publication series

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


OtherTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets IV
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • JWST
  • James Webb Space Telescope
  • NIRCam
  • coronagraph

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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