Abstract

Adaptive optics (AO) systems take sampled measurements of the wave-front phase. Because in the general case the spatial-frequency content of the phase aberration is not band limited, aliasing will occur. This aliasing will cause increased residual error and increased scattered light in the point-spread function (PSF). The spatially filtered wave-front sensor (SFWFS) mitigates this phenomenon by using a field stop at a focal plane before the wave-front sensor. This stop acts as a low-pass filter on the phase, significantly reducing the high-spatial-frequency content phase seen by the wave-front sensor at moderate to high Strehl ratios. We study the properties and performance of the SFWFS for open- and closed-loop correction of atmospheric turbulence, segmented-primary-mirror errors, and sensing with broadband light. In closed loop the filter reduces high-spatial-frequency phase power by a factor of 103 to 108. In a full AO-system simulation, this translates to a reduction by up to 625 times in the residual error power due to aliasing over a specific spatial frequency range. The final PSF (generated with apodization of the pupil) has up to a 100 times reduction in intensity out to λ/2d.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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