Energy loss is a main problem of liquid crystal adaptive optics systems (LC AOSs). It is caused by the polarization dependence and narrow spectral range. The polarization dependence has been avoided by Love and Mu et al. [Appl. Opt. 32, 2222 (1993); Appl. Opt. 47, 4297 (2008)]. In this paper, a novel method was proposed to extend the spectral range of LC AOSs using multiple liquid crystal wavefront correctors (LCWFCs) to improve the energy utilization. Firstly, the chromatism of an LCWFC was measured and analyzed. The calculated results indicate that one LCWFC is only suitable to perform adaptive correction for a narrow waveband; therefore, multiple LCWFCs must be used to achieve a broadband correction. Secondly, based on open-loop control, a novel optical layout consisting of three LCWFCs was proposed to extend the spectral range of LC AOSs and thus achieve correction in the whole waveband of 520–810 nm. Thirdly, a broadband correction experiment was conducted and near diffraction-limited resolution was achieved in the waveband of 520–690 nm. Finally, a 500 m horizontal turbulence correction experiment was performed in the waveband of 520–690 nm. With adaptive correction, the resolution of the optical system was improved significantly and the image of the single fiber was clearly resolved. Furthermore, compared with a sub-waveband system, the system energy was improved. The energy of the whole waveband is equal to the sum of all the sub-wavebands. The experiment results validated our method and indicate that the chromatism in a broad waveband of LC AOSs can be eliminated. And then, the system energy can be improved greatly using the novel method.
© 2010 OSAFull Article | PDF Article