Abstract

Multi-object adaptive optics (MOAO) is a solution developed to perform a correction by adaptive optics (AO) in a science large field of view. As in many wide-field AO schemes, a tomographic reconstruction of the turbulence volume is required in order to compute the MOAO corrections to be applied in the dedicated directions of the observed very faint targets. The specificity of MOAO is the open-loop control of the deformable mirrors by a number of wavefront sensors (WFSs) that are coupled to bright guide stars in different directions. MOAO calls for new procedures both for the cross registration of all the channels and for the computation of the tomographic reconstructor. We propose a new approach, called “Learn and Apply (L&A)”, that allows us to retrieve the tomographic reconstructor using the on-sky wavefront measurements from an MOAO instrument. This method is also used to calibrate the registrations between the off-axis wavefront sensors and the deformable mirrors placed in the science optical paths. We propose a procedure linking the WFSs in the different directions and measuring directly on-sky the required covariance matrices needed for the reconstructor. We present the theoretical expressions of the turbulence spatial covariance of wavefront slopes allowing one to derive any turbulent covariance matrix between two wavefront sensors. Finally, we discuss the convergence issue on the measured covariance matrices, we propose the fitting of the data based on the theoretical slope covariance using a reduced number of turbulence parameters, and we present the computation of a fully modeled reconstructor.

© 2010 Optical Society of America

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