Status Report

Artificial guide stars for adaptive optics using unmanned aerial vehicles

By SpaceRef Editor
March 27, 2018
Filed under , ,

Alastair Basden, Anthony M Brown, Paula Chadwick, Paul Clark, Richard Massey
(Submitted on 23 Mar 2018)

Astronomical adaptive optics systems are used to increase effective telescope resolution. However, they cannot be used to observe the whole sky since one or more natural guide stars of sufficient brightness must be found within the telescope field of view for the AO system to work. Even when laser guide stars are used, natural guide stars are still required to provide a constant position reference. Here, we introduce a technique to overcome this problem by using rotary unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a platform from which to produce artificial guide stars. We describe the concept, which relies on the UAV being able to measure its precise relative position. We investigate the adaptive optics performance improvements that can be achieved, which in the cases presented here can improve the Strehl ratio by a factor of at least 2 for a 8~m class telescope. We also discuss improvements to this technique, which is relevant to both astronomical and solar adaptive optics systems.

Comments:    Accepted for publication in MNRAS
Subjects:    Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM)
Cite as:    arXiv:1803.08945 [astro-ph.IM] (or arXiv:1803.08945v1 [astro-ph.IM] for this version)
Submission history
From: Alastair Basden Dr [view email]
[v1] Fri, 23 Mar 2018 19:05:47 GMT (1299kb)

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