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21 February 2003 VIDA (VLTI imaging with a densified array): a densified pupil combiner proposed for snapshot imaging with the VLTI
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Only in the recent years did it become realized that multi-aperture interferometric arrays could provide direct snapshot images and coronagraphic images in a non-Fizeau mode. Whereas homothetic mapping of entrance pupil to exit pupil is useless when the aperture is higly diluted, a "densified-pupil" or "hypertelescope" imaging mode can concentrate most light into a high-resolution Airy peak. In addition to the luminosity gain, there is a contrast gain particularly valuable for stellar coronagraphy and exoplanets finding. The current VLTI is able to combine light from two telescopes coherently. In subsequent phases, a combiner is planned for applying closure phase with up to eight telescopes (UT and AT). The small number of apertures currently considered at the VLTI, does not take full advantage of hypertelescope imaging, but still performs significantly better than other observing modes (+3.8mag gain in comparison with Fizeau mode). We propose some possible optical scheme for a densified-pupil combiner for the VLTI. Beyond its science value, the proposed instrument can serve as a precursor for many-element post-VLTI hypertelescopes.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Olivier Lardiere, Antoine Labeyrie, Denis Mourard, Pierre Riaud, Luc Arnold, Julien Dejonghe, and Sophie Gillet "VIDA (VLTI imaging with a densified array): a densified pupil combiner proposed for snapshot imaging with the VLTI", Proc. SPIE 4838, Interferometry for Optical Astronomy II, (21 February 2003);


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