Adaptive optics systems and control algorithms can be tested in the laboratory with controlled disturbances. We have a micromachined deformable mirror that we use as a programmable aberration generator. We present a method of programming the actuator amplitudes so that the wave front reflecting from the surface will simulate atmospheric turbulence. We present experimental results that show that we can simulate the Kolmogorov spatial spectrum within the constraints of the useful region of the deformable mirror.
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