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7 February 2003 Numerical versus optical layer oriented: a comparison in terms of SNR
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Multiconjugate adaptive optics employing several deformable mirrors conjugated at different altitudes has been proposed in order to extend the size of the corrected field of view [FOV] with respect to the size of the corrected FOV given by a classical adaptive optics system. A three dimensional measurement of the turbulent volume is needed in order to collect the information to command the several deformable mirrors. Given a set of guide stars in the field of view, this can be done both using tomography, in which several wavefront sensors are used, each of them coupled to one of the guide stars, or layer oriented techniques, in which wavefront sensors are coupled to a given layer in the atmosphere, and collect light from the whole set of guide stars. We will call this type of measurements optical layer oriented. This type of measurements can be also obtained combining in a numerical way, tomographic measurements. This hybrid approach is called numerical layer oriented. In order to compare their performance, we present an analytical study of the signal to noise ratio [SNR] in the measurements for the two techniques. Optical layer oriented is shown to be more efficient in the range of faint flux and large number of guide stars, while low detector noise will allow numerical layer oriented schemes to be more efficient in terms of SNR.
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Dolores Bello, Jean-Marc Conan, Gerard Rousset, Massimiliano Tordi, Roberto Ragazzoni, Elise Vernet-Viard, Markus E. Kasper, and Stefan Hippler "Numerical versus optical layer oriented: a comparison in terms of SNR", Proc. SPIE 4839, Adaptive Optical System Technologies II, (7 February 2003);

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