Abstract

Correction by active mirror systems of image distortion due to atmospheric turbulence promises to improve the quality of ground-based astronomical observations. Although the ideal of fully correcting average-to-poor seeing to the diffraction limit of a large telescope cannot be easily realized with current technology, it has been demonstrated that partial correction of severe seeing disturbances can significantly improve image resolution. This paper describes a computer simulation of partial seeing correction by the Lockheed Active Mirror. Quantitative evaluation of the effects of partial correction on simulated wavefronts indicates that, even with a modest number of mirror actuators, one can achieve a diffraction-limited image superimposed on a background of scattered light.

© 1988 Optical Society of America

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